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Walt Whitman to John Burroughs, 1 August [1876]


I send a copy of L of G​ . (same address as this card)—Please let me know (by postal card will do) if it reaches you safely. Much the same with me—feel middling fair. Your letter rec'd​ .2 Folks well—

W. W.  loc.01180.001_large.jpg

The naturalist John Burroughs (1837–1921) met Whitman on the streets of Washington, D.C., in 1864. After returning to Brooklyn in 1864, Whitman commenced what was to become a decades-long correspondence with Burroughs. Burroughs was magnetically drawn to Whitman. However, the correspondence between the two men is, as Burroughs acknowledged, curiously "matter-of-fact." Burroughs would write several books involving or devoted to Whitman's work: Notes on Walt Whitman, as Poet and Person (1867), Birds and Poets (1877), Whitman, A Study (1896), and Accepting the Universe (1924). For more on Whitman's relationship with Burroughs, see Carmine Sarracino, "Burroughs, John [1837–1921] and Ursula [1836–1917]," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998).


  • 1. This postal card is addressed: John Burroughs | Esopus-on-Hudson | New York. It is postmarked: CAMDEN | AUG | 1 | N.J. [back]
  • 2. It is uncertain which letter Whitman is referring to here. [back]
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