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Walt Whitman to Talcott Williams, 13 October 1884

My dear Williams

I should like the little Presidential canvass poem1 to go in the paper of Sunday Oct 26—I think that time would be opportune—Send me word (by note) if that suits you—& if so I will send it two or three days beforehand.

As I am writing to you I enclose the rec't for the Red Jacket bit2

Walt Whitman

Talcott Williams (1849–1928) was associated with the New York Sun and World as well as the Springfield Republican before he became the editor of the Philadelphia Press in 1879. His newspaper vigorously defended Whitman in news articles and editorials after the Boston censorship of 1882. For more information about Williams, see Philip W. Leon, "Williams, Talcott (1849–1928)," Walt Whitman: An Encyclopedia, ed. J.R. LeMaster and Donald D. Kummings (New York: Garland Publishing, 1998).


  • 1. "If I Should Need to Name, O Western World" (later "Election Day, November, 1884") appeared in the Philadelphia Press on October 26. Whitman received $10 for the poem (Whitman's Commonplace Book). The manuscript, with instructions to the printer for putting it in type, is in the Charles E. Feinberg Collection (Library of Congress, Washington D.C.). [back]
  • 2. "Red Jacket (from Aloft)." [back]
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