Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Herbert Gilchrist, 25 December [1878]

Date: December 25, 1878

Whitman Archive ID: upa.00186

Source: Walt Whitman Collection, 1842–1957, Rare Book & Manuscript Library, University of Pennsylvania. Transcribed from digital images or a microfilm reproduction of the original item. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Notes for this letter were derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller, 6 vols. (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), and supplemented, updated, or created by Whitman Archive staff as appropriate.

Contributors to digital file: Alicia Bones, Grace Thomas, Anthony Dreesen, Kevin McMullen, and Nicole Gray

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Camden New Jersey1
Dec 25—p m

Yours of day before yesterday rec'd—I am well as usual, & bustling about—Sister and brother well—Bitter cold & gusty gales here for two days2—I don't go out so much—Went over Sunday morning to foot of Arch St. Phila. to breakfast on a steamer—bountiful breakfast—jolly democratic three hours3—I have written to Miss Jenny G.—I sent John Burroughs your Brooklyn address—he & wife are away spending Christmas holidays—I shall send him your present address—havn't seen E's4 portrait yet—I am writing this up in my room—Sun shines out as I finish


Merry Christmas to you & all


1. This post card bears the address: Herbert Gilchrist | 315 West 19th Street | New York City. It is postmarked: Philadelphia | (?) | 25 | (?) | Pa. [back]

2. In his Commonplace Book, Whitman mentioned that the "cold spell" lasted from December 24 to 29 (Charles E. Feinberg Collection of the Papers of Walt Whitman, 1839–1919, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.). [back]

3. Whitman had Sunday breakfast (December 22) with John L. Wilson, the purser of the "Whildin" steamboat. Upon his return Whitman sent Wilson a photograph and a copy of Memoranda During the War (Whitman's Commonplace Book). [back]

4. Probably Wyatt Eaton (see the letter from Whitman to Herbert Gilchrist of May 10, 1878), who did a crayon drawing of William Cullen Bryant for Scribner's Monthly (Whitman's Commonplace Book). [back]


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