Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Jessie Louisa Whitman, 24 December 1888

Date: December 24, 1888

Whitman Archive ID: wcu.00008

Source: Hunter Library at Western Carolina University. 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: Cristin Noonan, Brandon James O'Neil, and Stephanie Blalock

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328 Mickle st—Camden1
Dec: 24 '88—

The beautiful handkerchiefs came all right—best love to you Dear J—& thanks—I am better now & sit up most of the day—had some mutton-broth, toast & an oyster for my breakfast—We are going to have fine weather for Christmas—I rec'd a letter from Miss Harbinson2 ack'g the book—My printing is all done & satisfactory—

Love to Jeff3
Walt Whitman

Jessie Louisa Whitman (1863–1957) was the second and youngest daughter of Whitman's brother Thomas Jefferson "Jeff" Whitman (1833–1890) and Jeff's wife Martha Mitchell Whitman (1836–1873).


1. This postal card is addressed: Miss Jessie Louisa Whitman | 2437 2d Carondelet Avenue | St Louis | Missouri. It is postmarked: ST. [illegible] MO. | DEC | 26 | 7AM | 1888 | R; CAMDEN, N.J. | DEC24 | 8AM | 88. There is a partial, but illegible postmark on the recto of the postal card. [back]

2. As yet we have no information about this person. [back]

3. Thomas Jefferson Whitman (1833–1890), known as "Jeff," was Walt Whitman's favorite brother. As a civil engineer, Jeff eventually became Superintendent of Water Works in St. Louis and a nationally recognized figure. For more on Jeff, see Randall Waldron, "Whitman, Thomas Jefferson (1833–1890)," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998). [back]


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