Life & Letters


About this Item

Title: Walt Whitman to William J. Linton, 4 October 1872

Date: October 4, 1872

Whitman Archive ID: yal.00401

Source: Yale Collection of American Literature, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. The transcription presented here is derived from Walt Whitman, The Correspondence, ed. Edwin Haviland Miller (New York: New York University Press, 1961–1977), 2:186. 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, Zachary King, and Eric Conrad

October 4, 1872.

My dear Linton:1

How do you get on with the picture?

The time is approaching when I shall want to use it.

I am back here at work at my desk, for the fall & coming winter.

I have not heard from you for some months.

Yours as always,
Walt Whitman

Solicitor's Office Treasury
Washington, D. C.


1. Linton (1812–1897), British-born wood engraver, came to the U.S. in 1866 and settled near New Haven, Conn. He illustrated the works of Whittier, Longfellow, Bryant, and others, wrote the History of Wood-Engraving in America (1882), and edited Poetry of America, 1776–1876 (London, 1878), in which appeared eight of Walt Whitman's poems as well as his picture. According to his Threescore and Ten Years, 1820 to 1890—Recollections (1894), 216–217, Linton met with Walt Whitman in Washington and later visited him in Camden (which Whitman reported in his November 9, 1873 letter to Peter Doyle): "I liked the man much, a fine-natured, good-hearted, big fellow, . . . a true poet who could not write poetry, much of wilfulness accounting for his neglect of form." [back]


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