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Walt Whitman to Talcott Williams, 12 October 1884

 col.00012.001_large.jpg My dear Williams

After I sent your note in answer yesterday—& reading yours again—I have perpetrated this—do I understand you are to have a long varied Blaine melange like in sections—the Presidential canvas business, of course? If so you might find a spot in the course of it all, where this screed may come in1

—If that don't suit you, or is not practicable (though I hope it will be, as I should like it just as well) print it by itself, like the little piece of Friday last.2

—I will call about 10. this evening to see proof.


Talcott Williams (1849–1928) was associated with the New York Sun and World as well as the Springfield Republican before he became the editor of the Philadelphia Press in 1879. His newspaper vigorously defended Whitman in news articles and editorials after the Boston censorship of 1882. For more information about Williams, see Philip W. Leon, "Williams, Talcott (1849–1928)," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998).


  • 1. "If I Should Need to Name, O Western World" (later "Election Day, November, 1884") appeared in the Philadelphia Press on October 26. Whitman received $10 for the poem (Whitman's Commonplace Book). The manuscript, with instructions to the printer for putting it in type, is in the Charles E. Feinberg Collection (Library of Congress, Washington D.C.). [back]
  • 2. "Red Jacket (from Aloft)." [back]
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