Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to Charles W. Eldridge, 8 October 1864

Date: October 8, 1864

Whitman Archive ID: yal.00095

Source: Yale University . The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 1:242-243. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Contributors to digital file: Elizabeth Lorang, Kathryn Kruger, Vanessa Steinroetter, and Alyssa Olson

Portland av near Myrtle | Brooklyn
Oct 8 '641

Dear friend,

Your letters from Washington have all reached me, with the others enclosed. The last from you was dated Sept 27. You did not mention William in it—I should always like to hear about him & from him. Is Nelly in Boston? If so say I sent my best love, not forgetting little Jennie. The last letter I received from Nelly was from Little Compton Aug 18—I have written subsequently & directed there, which I suppose she received—I have not heard from her since—

I am pretty well, perhaps not so unconsciously hearty as before my sickness—We are deprest in spirits home here about my brother George, (2d div 9th Corps)—if not killed, he is a prisoner—he was in the engagement of Sept 30 on the extreme left.31

My book is not yet being printed. I still wish to stereotype it myself. I could easily still put it in the hands of a proper publisher then, & make better terms with him.

If you write to William I wish you to enclose him this letter—I wish him to receive again my faithful friendship—while breath & sense remain I cannot forget what he has been to me—I love him dearly—

The weather here is fine of late—to-day a little blowy—The political meetings in New York & Brooklyn are immense—I go to them as to shows, fireworks, cannon, clusters of gaslights, countless torches, banners & mottos, 15, 20, 50,000 people—Per contra I occasionally go riding off in the country, in quiet lanes, or a sail on the water, & many times to the sea shore at Coney Island—

All the signs are that Grant is going to strike forthwith, perhaps risk all—One feels solemn who sees what depends. The military success, though first-class of war, is the least that depends—

Good bye, dearest comrade, write me whenever you can—if I make any move I shall let you know—



1. The envelope for this letter bears the address: Charles W Eldridge | care J F Eldridge & Co | 31 School street | Boston | Massachusetts. It is postmarked: New York | Oct | 8. [back]


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