Catalogs of Manuscripts at Individual Repositories

Catalog of a Walt Whitman Literary Manuscript in the John Hay Papers, John Hay Library, Brown University

Original records created by the Special Collections Division of Brown University Library; revised and expanded by the Walt Whitman Archive and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries. Encoded Archival Description completed with the assistance of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Title: Walt Whitman Literary Manuscript in the John Hay Papers, John Hay Library, Brown University

Collection Number: Ms.Hay

Creator:  Whitman, Walt, 1819-1892

Repository:  John Hay Library Special Collections

This catalog was created from records created by the staff of Brown University Library, and obtained by the Walt Whitman Archive. The original papers and catalogue records are held at John Hay Library, Brown University.

Scope and Content: 
The John Hay collection documents the life of John Milton Hay (1838-1905), Brown Class of 1858, and consists of two major components: A collection of approximately 2000 books and Hay's personal papers, comprising over 9,100 items. These include correspondence, diaries, manuscript poems, galley proofs, and personal letterpress copy books. Only the Walt Whitman poetry manuscript is described in this catalog.

Biographical Information:
For additional biographical information, see "Walt Whitman," by Ed Folsom and Kenneth M. Price, and the chronology of Whitman's Life.

Whitman, Walt, 1819-1892;  Whitman, Walt, 1819-1892--Manuscripts; Poets, American--19th century

Whitman Archive Title: O Captain! my Captain!
Whitman Archive ID: brn.00001
Series: Series 2. Correspondence
Repository Title: Whitman, Walt to Hay, John
Date: March 9, 1887
Genre: poetry
Physical Description: 1 leaf, handwritten
View images: 1
Content: A signed, dated, handwritten copy of "O Captain! My Captain!," which was published first in 1865. The manuscript was recopied by Whitman, without changes from the version published in 1881, at the request of John Hay, who wrote Whitman in 1887 to request an autograph copy of the poem. The manuscript is stored with a cover letter from Whitman to Hay, which requests payment of $22. A letter from Hay to Whitman dated March 12, 1887, acknowledges receipt of the manuscript and sends a check for thirty dollars in payment. An image of the manuscript's verso is currently unavailable.

Restrictions on Original Materials: Please consult with repository.

Preferred Citation:  To identify this catalog as a source, see the Archive's "Conditions of Use" page.

Repository Contact Information:

Brown University Library
John Hay Library
20 Prospect Street / Box A
Providence, RI 02912


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Distributed under a Creative Commons License. Matt Cohen, Ed Folsom, & Kenneth M. Price, editors.