In Whitman's Hand

Letters Written for Soldiers

About this Item

Title: Albion F. Hubbard to Austin Rice, 12 June 1863

Date: June 12, 1863

Whitman Archive ID: prc.00118

Source: Private Collection. Transcribed from digital images or a microfilm reproduction of the original item. For a description of the editorial rationale behind our treatment of the correspondence, see our statement of editorial policy.

Contributors to digital file: Ashlyn Stewart and Kevin McMullen



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Washington
Friday evening June 12th 18631

Dear friend,

As I have a favorable opportunity, by means of a visitor to the hospital, who is now sitting by the side of my bed, I write you again, making the second time this week, to let you know that I am tolerably comofortable, have good care & medical attendance, & hope to be up before long—have been up & moving around the ward both this forenoon & afternooon—though I move around pretty slow, as I am weak yet—A member of the Massachusetts Relief Society has called upon me & given me a few trifles———

Dear friend, I wish you would say to Mrs Rice I send her my best love & respects—I send my love to Horace, also to Charles & Mrs Clare—I would like so much to see the face of a friend,—I wish you would write me a good long letter, some of you my dear friends, as a letter from home is very acceptable in hospital———

My diarrhea is still somewhat troublesome, yet I feel in pretty good spirits—I send you an envelope with my address on—Keep a copy of it—& this one you please put a stamp on & write to me—Please give my love to the friends in the village & tell them I should like to hear from them, & give them my direction here in hospital—Good bye for the present


Albion F Hubbard2

written by Walt Whitman, a friend.


Notes:

1. The envelope accompanying this letter is addressed to Mr. Austin Rice, Conway, Massachusetts. It is postmarked Washington D.C., June 11, 1863. [back]

2. Whitman wrote about Albion F. Hubbard in his notebooks from this period. Hubbard likely received a good education as he worked on the farm of Austin Rice, who had also been a teacher and a justice of the peace. Hubbard was described as 5' 7.25" tall with a dark complexion, hazel eyes, and brown hair. He died from diarrhea at just nineteen years old. Military documents show that Hubbard's body was embalmed and returned home for burial. He rests at the Pine Grove Cemetery in Conway, Massachusetts, near the final resting place of his birth parents, Horace and Mary Gunn Hubbard (Kenneth M. Price and Jacqueline M. Budell, "Writen by Walt Whitman, a friend," Prologue Magazine 42, no. 2 [Summer 2016]: 36–45). [back]


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