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Peter Eckler to Walt Whitman, 26 April 1865

 loc.00880.001.jpg Mr. Whitman

Your book is now to proofs & will be ready for the Binder next Monday morning. As there was nothing done yesterday & the day before on account of the funeral, my waiting for your reply did not retard the book much. Alvords foreman promises to do a good job & I hope he will [illegible] I sent you record of [illegible] page Mr Belts [illegible] Send you a copy as soon as published & another copy to Congressional Library of Washington. What will complete your copyright—His office is in Beckman 01—in Johnston's Old Theater.

Respectfully P. Eckler


  • 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 on April 22 a 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. (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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