Catalogs of Manuscripts at Individual Repositories

Catalog of the Walt Whitman Poetry Manuscripts in the Walt Whitman Collection, The Library of Congress

Original finding aid completed by the Library of Congress; revised and expanded by The Walt Whitman Archive and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries. Encoded Archival Description completed with the assistance of the Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, the University of Nebraska Research Council, the Institute for Museum and Library Services, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Title: Walt Whitman Poetry Manuscripts in the Walt Whitman Collection, The Library of Congress

MS Number: N/A

Creator:  Whitman, Walt, 1819-1892

Repository:  Manuscripts Division, The Library of Congress

This catalog was created, in part, from digital images of the original manuscripts obtained by The Walt Whitman Archive. The original papers and finding aid are held at the Library of Congress.

Scope and Content: 
The Walt Whitman Collection holds several items including drafts of poems and essays, letters to and from members of Whitman's family, and commentary on contemporary American poets. For this catalog, only those objects deemed literary manuscripts have been described at the item-level.

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: Death of Gen. Grant
Whitman Archive ID: loc.00089
Date: ca. 1888
Genre: poetry
Physical Description: 1 leaf, handwritten
View images: 1 | 2
Content: A draft of the poem "Death of General Grant." The poem was first published in Harper's Weekly Magazine on May 16, 1885 under the title "As One by One Withdraw the Lofty Actors." It was later reprinted as "Grant" in the Critic on August 15, 1885. It finally appeared, in an altered form and under the title "Death of General Grant," in "Sands at Seventy" (first a part of November Boughs [1888] and then as an annex to the 1889 reprinting of Leaves of Grass). Since this manuscript is titled "Death of Gen. Grant" and does not contain the poem's second verse (which Whitman cut from the "Sands at Seventy" version) it is likely that this copy was written in or around 1888, despite the note (in another hand) placing the date at 1885.

Whitman Archive Title: Interpolation Sounds
Whitman Archive ID: loc.00090
Date: ca. 1888
Genre: poetry
Physical Description: 1 leaf, 28 x 21.5 cm, handwritten
View images: 1 | 2
Content: An early draft of the poem "Interpolation Sounds," first published in the New York Herald on August 12, 1888 under the title "Over and Through the Burial Chant." It was publised with the revised title in Good-Bye My Fancy (1891).

Whitman Archive Title: o the bleeding drops of red
Whitman Archive ID: loc.00091
Date: 1888
Genre: poetry
Physical Description: 1 leaf, handwritten, printed
View images: 1 | 2
Content: Handwritten notes and corrections on a printed copy of the poem "O Captain! My Captain!" Although the poem was first published in the Saturday Press on November 4, 1865 and later included in Sequel to Drum-Taps (1865-66), the corrections on this particular copy were made in early 1888, when the poem was reprinted in the Riverside Literature Series, Number 32 (January 1888). On the verso is a note from Whitman to the publishers of the Riverside Literature Series concerning corrections to be made to their printed version of the poem.

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:

The Library of Congress, Manuscripts Division
Room LM101, James Madison Building
101 Independence Ave., S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20540-4680


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