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Edward C. Stewart to Walt Whitman, 25 February [1870]

 loc.01903.001.jpg Dear Friend Walt:

Yours of the twelfth just rec'd​ was very glad to hear from you.

There is some mistake about Peters​ letters I have received four or five from him, no fear of your "photo" not reaching here, wish you had have sent it I would like very much to have yours also Peters​ if you have a double one of yourself & Peters​ I would like to have that if not why stir Pete up and make him send me his you send yours also,

Yes you may [damage] you & I down in your log [illegible] two good friends (Even if one old & one young as you say).

I supposed by Petes​ letters that he was as gay as usual, but guess the boy is coming to his senses and thinking about settling down in life and is going to benefit by the numerous opportunities which he has, How does he & the widow pull together now, I suppose Ile​ find you & Pete in the same box when I return to Washington.

I suppose there is gay times at Met'n​ & Canturbury​ halls, Moses but I wish I was there with you old Covies for a while, never mind Ile​ be back very soon now, think Ile​ stay here till  loc.01903.002.jpg August or September then will come home for a month at least if not to stay there altogether Ive​ got a grand chance here with some young Lady whose Pa happens to have some spare cash think he would settle up pretty lively should I take one of his Daughters. He is the American Consul for this place so you see there's no knowing how it may turn out, I am having quite a nice time among the Elite of this place Ive​ just joined the Sons & Sisters of Temperance "British Lodge" & am making fine progress, Rode the cussed Goat last night & feel quite stiff over it, [damage] I wish you could have heard me speechifying for them you know Everyone has to do that who joins. They wanted me to give them a recitation but twas no go unless they would take that familiar old piece of Peters​ (Something about the man who could not get his chimney up high Enough to keep his neighbors Thomas cats from putting out his fire) Ha Ha, That would have been fine but the girls up this way are very modest so I got off quite an Elaborate address in which I expressed my Phellow Phelinx to the best of my abilities & wished the cause of  loc.01903.003.jpg Temperance Everlasting progress & Said I supposed that in the course of a few more years I hoped there would be no such thing as Intemperance, (was interrupted with "hear" "hear" and any amount of cheering & in the midst of the cheering I brought my speech to a mighty sudden close & sat down the hero of the Evening. Hows that for a Lager beer imbiber Eh, guess it makes you open your Eyes somewhat. I am still improving in health getting more blooming Every Day people who saw me on my way here & who have been here within last month did not recognize the pale youth who passed them last summer. Ime​ as strong as a buck Eat as much hash & porridge as usual.

Ime​ going to surprise you all when I do come home none of you will know it Just to see if you will recognize the Boy who left Washington some time ago Ive​ got over my home sickness & am I suppose as hard  loc.01903.004.jpg hearted as the rest of humanity when theyve​ left home for the first time determined to enjoy themselves to their utmost but for all that there's no place like home as the song goes.

I received several challenges from several young Ladies here, through some very flattering valentines with Something like this inscription on them. "A hand" with "If you can get will you accept" quite a nice thing but as it came from wrong quarter why I didn't accept.

So Ile​ beg you to Excuse this writing which is done in a very big hurry as I have made an Engagement to go out Driving in Sleigh with "Her" & the time is Drawing near a head So Ile​ close sending you & Peter much Love.

PS Tell Pete Ile​ answer his as soon as rec'd​ .

Snowing here now

Adeau​ Yours Muchly Ed C Stewart  loc.01903.005.jpg "Continuation" Eleven Oclock P.M.

Well Walt Ive​ just returned from that ride I mentioned I was away about twenty miles on the Blue Mountains of Cape Breton had gay time, Saw any amount of Indians of Mickmac Tribe. I've promised that young Lady to show her your picture so you will not Disappoint me. Today I received two papers from Pete I suppose. "Sunday Chron" & Balto Sun.

No more at present Yours Infernally (as old man "Weller," says in Pickwick Ned
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