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Peter Eckler to Walt Whitman, 22 April 1865

W. Whitman

[illegible] sir

On page 31 verse 2 line 3 of Drum Taps the word "recalls" is spelled "recals." According to Webster & Worcester it is wrong but before taking the responsibility of altering it, I wait for your decision. Please let me know as soon as possible. The other corrections and alterations [illegible] I enclose a proof of 'O Pioneers!'" & I think is improved

I enclose a bill showing the balance[illegible]ount. If I receive [illegible] printing done by Saturday,[illegible] you can transmit me the cost and I will deliver the texts to your binder.

Your Respectfully, P. Eckler

To cover stereotyping & [illegible] $114.60
Two taking extra paperwork 2.00
Cover & stereotyping & pages 3.00
Alteration of plates 1.00
One box for plates 1.00
3 Reams paper 63.00
7 " 8.25
Cr[edit] by cash 138.00
Sent $20 April 26  
$20 May 2  
leaving (May 2 '65.) $14.85 due  


  • 1. On April 1, 1865, Whitman signed a contract with Peter Eckler to stereotype 500 copies of Drum-Taps for $254.00: "The workmanship is to be first class in every respect & to be completed, & the printed sheets delivered within one month from this date." The contract called for "one hundred & twenty pages," but since the book contained only 72 pages, Eckler submitted the enclosed bill for $192.85, of which $138.00 had been paid. According to Whitman's notations on the statement, he paid $20.00 on April 26 and again on May 2. Whitman sent another letter on May 3 in answer to Eckler's request of May 1 that the balance be paid. On May 4, Eckler issued a receipt for $34.85, and included a receipt from Coridon A. Alvord, printer, for the stereotype plates, which he had placed in his vault. On April 26, Eckler had informed Whitman that the book was "now to press" and would "be ready for the Binders next Monday morning." For details on the printing history and organization of Drum-Taps see Ted Genoways, "The Disorder of Drum-Taps," Walt Whitman Quarterly Review 24 (Fall 2006/Winter 2007), 98–116. [back]
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