Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Charles W. Eldridge to Walt Whitman, 15 October 1873

Date: October 15, 1873

Whitman Archive ID: uva.00464

Source: Papers of Walt Whitman (MSS 3829), Clifton Waller Barrett Library of American Literature, Albert H. Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia. 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.

Contributors to digital file: Alex Kinnaman, Jonathan Y. Cheng, Elizabeth Lorang, Nima Najafi Kianfar, and Nicole Gray

page image
image 1
page image
image 2

Oct 15, 1873

Dear Walt:

Your letter came to hand yesterday with the key of the trunk enclosed. In accordance with your request I met Peter Doyle at Milburn's after office and we proceeded to your room and made up the package as you directed, and Peter took it to the Adams Express office.

The contents are, Gray suit, coat, vest & one pair of pants. Black overcoat. Black felt hat. Pair of Buckskin gloves.

You should receive them in good order to-day, as they were strongly enveloped & plainly directed.

Let me know if you get them all right. I return the key enclosed herewith. Let me know how you are as often as you can. You had but one pair of gray pants, at least that was all there was in that trunk.

Affectionately Yours,

Charles W. Eldridge (1837–1903) was one half of the Boston-based abolitionist publishing firm Thayer and Eldridge, who issued the 1860 edition of Leaves of Grass. In December 1862, on his way to find his injured brother George in Fredericksburg, Virginia, Whitman stopped in Washington and encountered Eldridge, who had become a clerk in the office of the army paymaster, Major Lyman Hapgood. Eldridge helped Whitman gain employment in Hapgood's office. For more on Whitman's relationship with Thayer and Eldridge, see David Breckenridge Donlon, "Thayer, William Wilde (1829–1896) and Charles W. Eldridge (1837–1903)," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998).


1. Whitman crossed this letter out and wrote several lines of poetry on the back. [back]


Published Works | In Whitman's Hand | Life & Letters | Commentary | Resources | Pictures & Sound

Support the Archive | About the Archive

Distributed under a Creative Commons License. Matt Cohen, Ed Folsom, & Kenneth M. Price, editors.