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James M. Green to Walt Whitman, 22 April 1876

 loc.02118.001_large.jpg Mr. Walt Whitman. Dear Sir,

The Belles Lettres Society of Dickinson College2 request me to extend to you an invitation to act as poet before the Literary societies on the evening of June 27th. This being the centennial year3 and expecting a large number of visitors, we are desirous of making the exercises of special interest and therefore extend to you this invitation hoping it will be convenient for you to accept.

Yours truly, J. M. Green.  loc.02118.002_large.jpg  loc.02118.003_large.jpg  loc.02118.004_large.jpg  loc.02118.005_large.jpg Invitation from Dickinson College Carlisle Pa. for June 27 '76 JM Green  loc.02118.006_large.jpg

James Monroe Green (b. 1851), a native of New Jersey, entered Dickinson College but left before graduation to accept a position at a Long Branch high school as a principal. He later became President of the National Educational Association and the principal of state schools in Trenton. For more information, see "Green, James, Monroe," The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography (New York: James T. White & Company, 1906), 13:516.


  • 1. This letter is addressed: Mr. Walt Whitman | Camden, | New Jersey. It is postmarked: Washington | AP 24 | [illegible]. [back]
  • 2. The Belles Lettres Literary Society (est. 1786) is the oldest student organization at Dickinson College and one of the oldest literary societies in the country. Belles Lettres is the parent organization of Dickinson's literary magazine, The Dickinson Review. [back]
  • 3. In 1876, the National Centennial commemorated the 100th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. The Centennial was marked by celebrations across the United States, not the least of which was the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, which ran from May to November 1876 with approximately 10 million visitors in a seven-month period. [back]
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