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1. Horace Traubel (1858–1919), son of a Quaker mother and German Jew-ish immigrant father, produced With Walt Whitman in Camden, the most im-portant biography of Whitman's later years. Compliments to Whitman's mother proliferate throughout the poet's conversations with Traubel, who visited him almost daily during the last four years of his life. Whitman's revisionary personal history took a decisive turn in 1867, however, when he described himself not only as “Well-begotten” but as “rais'd by a perfect mother.” See “Starting from Paumanok,” LG 1867, in “Leaves of Grass”: A Textual Variorum of the Printed Poems, ed. Sculley Bradley, Harold W. Blodgett, Arthur Golden, and William White, 3 vols. (New York: New York University Press, 1980), 2:273. [BACK]

2. On Traubel as “the last of the young men with whom the poet developed a strong emotional attachment,” see Gary Schmidgall, Walt Whitman: A Gay Life (New York: Dutton, 1997), p. 226. [BACK]

3. See Quentin Anderson, “Whitman's New Man,” in Walt Whitman's Au-tograph Revision of the Analysis of “Leaves of Grass” (For Dr. R. M. Bucke's Walt Whitman), ed. Stephen Railton (New York: New York University Press, 1974), p. 29. [BACK]

4. The notebooks had other purposes as well. For an analysis of their various functions that concentrates mainly on the late 1870s and 1880s, see DBN 1:xi-xix. [BACK]

5. On the Van Velsors and war, see also Whitman's notebook entry for Au-gust 11, 1864: “Mother was telling me at dinner to-day, how glad she was when peace was declared, after the war of 1812 &c. She said her father told them he hoped they never would be compelled to see the horrors of war, as he had seen them in the Revolution. Mother's brothers were in the army at Brooklyn in 1812. She told me that her father came down to visit them and bring them some things, and she came with him. The camp must have been somewhere in the neighborhood of what is now Washington Park” (NUPM 2:523–24). [BACK]

6. For example, “In dress she was rather Quakerish” (NUPM 1:6); “the last of Quaker training” (NUPM 1:31); “my grandmother Amy's sweet old face in its Quaker cap” (SD 694); “Amy Williams, of the Friends' or Quakers' denomi-nation” (SD 694); “The maternal one (Amy Williams before marriage) was a Friend, or Quakeress, of sweet, sensible character, housewifely proclivities, and deeply intuitive and spiritual” (SD 695).


In 1867, Whitman attributed the stirring battle narrative in Section 35 of “Song of Myself” to “my grandmother's father the sailor,” though in 1855 he had asked, “Did you read in the seabooks of the oldfashioned frigate-fight?” This yarn-telling great-grandfather is described by the editors of the Norton Critical Edition of Leaves of Grass as Amy Williams Van Velsor's father, Cap-tain John Williams, assumed to have served under John Paul Jones when the Bon-homme Richard defeated the Serapis. Whitman does not mention this “fact” in any of his prose genealogies, which is curious given his hunger for any scrap of ancestral glory. And Quakers, of course, were not supposed to participate in mil-itary engagements. [BACK]

7. This passage is introduced by a countertype “who sprang in crimson youth from the white froth and the water-blue.” Probably this exotic figure is Aphrodite, the ancient mother-goddess of the eastern Mediterranean. [BACK]

8. In ferreting out evidence of physical and moral corruption in “Faces,” Whitman looks back to William Cullen Bryant's emblematic catalogue tech-nique in “The Crowded Street” (1843). He also mobilizes a furious energy that anticipates the psychological, sexual, and spiritual dislocation of T. S. Eliot's The Waste Land. On “Faces” as a city poem, and on its historical and literary sources, see Christopher Beach, The Politics of Distinction: Whitman and the Discourses of Nineteenth-Century America (Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1996), pp. 111, 128, 130, 133–40, 142–43, 147, 154, 184. [BACK]

9. Whitman was vague about his maternal aunts and uncles, and it is unclear how many ways the estate was likely to have been divided, assuming that some-thing remained after his step-grandmother's death. Cornelius Van Velsor may have wanted some of his estate to go to Amy's children, but he had a son, Alonzo, by his second wife. Given Alonzo's comparative youth, there may have been noth-ing left over for the others. [BACK]

10. Bronson Alcott, The Journals of Bronson Alcott, ed. Odell Shepard (Bos-ton: Little, Brown, 1938), p. 289. [BACK]

11. John Burroughs in a letter to his wife, June 1868, as quoted in Clara Barrus,Whitman and Burroughs: Comrades (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1931), p. 57. [BACK]

12. Louisa Whitman, quoted in Mattie: The Letters of Martha Mitchell Whit-man, ed. Randall H. Waldron (New York: New York University Press, 1977), pp. 19–20. [BACK]

13. Louisa Whitman, from the Trent Collection, William R. Perkins Library, Duke University. Except as otherwise indicated, Louisa Van Velsor Whitman's letters are paraphrased or quoted from this source. [BACK]

14. See Carroll Smith-Rosenberg, “The Female World of Love and Ritual: Relations Between Women in Nineteenth-Century America,” Signs 1 (autumn 1975), 1–29. [BACK]

15. Josephine Barkeloo, quoted in Dear Brother Walt: The Letters of Thomas Jefferson Whitman, ed. Dennis Berthold and Kenneth Price (Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 1984), p. 149 n. [BACK]

16. Louisa Whitman, quoted in Bliss Perry, Walt Whitman (Boston: Hough-ton Mifflin, 1906), p. 19. [BACK]

17. See Sandra Tomc, “An Idle Industry: Nathaniel Parker Willis and the

Workings of Literary Leisure,” American Quarterly 49, no. 4 (December 1997): 780–805. [BACK]

18. On Walter Senior's body, see Whitman, quoted in Barrus, p. 281. [BACK]

19. On Jesse's intelligence, see Katherine Molinoff,Some Notes on Whitman's Family (Brooklyn: Comet Press, 1941), p. 19. Walt never discussed Jesse with Traubel or, so far as we can tell, with any of his friends. [BACK]

20. Jeff also believed that Jesse had contracted syphilis from her. See Dear Brother Walt, pp. 85, 86. On Jesse's injuries, see Civil War Letters of George Washington Whitman, ed. Jerome M. Loving (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1975), pp. 9–10. [BACK]

21. See the Record of the Kings County Lunatic Asylum, quoted in Gay Wil-son Allen, The Solitary Singer: A Critical Biography of Walt Whitman (1955; re-print, New York: New York University Press, 1967), p. 318. [BACK]

22. See the letter written by Fred Vaughan after his visit on April 29, 1860, in Calamus Lovers: Walt Whitman's Working Class Camerados, ed. Charley Shively (San Francisco: Gay Sunshine Press, 1987), p. 87. Vaughan provides a careful accounting of the whereabouts of all family members then living at home. Jesse is not among them. [BACK]

23. The extent of Edward's retardation is puzzling. Family letters show that as an adult he attended church by himself every night, successfully ran errands, and transmitted messages. Louisa Whitman quotes his comments in her letters to Walt and they are almost always apt. On at least one occasion, she provides a long account of a disturbing situation based on Ed's reporting and it is per-fectly coherent, even graphic. (He had met an escapee from the asylum where Jesse was being detained who claimed that “it was too damned bad to keep him there.” Mrs. Whitman became alarmed that Jesse might try to escape as well. See the letter of April 7, 1869, in Allen, Solitary Singer, pp. 407–8. The escapee was Henry Rome, who was related to the printers of the first edition of Leaves of Grass.) [BACK]

24. See the two letters in Faint Clews & Indirections: Manuscripts of Walt Whitman and His Family, ed. Clarence Gohdes and Rollo G. Silver (Durham, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1949), pp. 184–90. This volume reprints sixteen of her letters to Walt, along with a selection of letters written by other family members: the sisters, cheerful Mary Elizabeth Whitman Van Nostrand and dis-turbed Hannah Whitman Heyde; the vicious brother-in-law Charles Heyde; and the faithful George—these last written during his service in the Civil War. Walt saved approximately one hundred and seventy of his mother's letters. [BACK]

25. See her letter of November 14, 1865, in Faint Clews, p. 192. [BACK]

26. See Horace L. Traubel, “Notes from Conversations with George W. Whit-man, 1893: Mostly in His Own Words,” in In Re Walt Whitman, ed. Horace L. Traubel, Richard Maurice Bucke, and Thomas Harned (Philadelphia: David McKay, 1893), pp. 35–36.

In a paper presented at the 1984 Modern Language Association Convention in Washington, D.C., “Out of Her Cradle: Walt and Louisa Van Velsor Whitman,” Kenneth M. Price further explains,

Louisa's letters show … that she strongly supported Walt's work. … She kept up with reviews of his poetry and commented on one written by Henry James [“a long one with

flourishes”]. … She expressed concern over whether Walt would succeed in placing his essay “Democracy” in The Galaxy. She read much of the early criticism on her son, expressing a preference for William Douglas O'Connor's The Good Gray Poet over John Burroughs's Notes on Walt Whitman, as Poet and Person. She concluded, however, that Anne Gilchrist's essay “A Woman's Estimate of Walt Whitman” was the best piece written on her son because Gilchrist understood Walt “better than ever any one did before as if she could see right through you.” Unquestionably, Louisa offered the poet important emotional support and demonstrated a sustained and genuine interest in Walt's literary endeavors.

Price cogently points out that critics who emphasize Louisa's illiteracy are wide of the mark. See, for example, Larzer Ziff, in Literary Democracy: The Declaration of Cultural Independence in America (New York: Viking, 1981), p. 33:

Whitman's mother was his gentle sustenance throughout his young manhood, but she was illiterate, and Whitman's love for her, even adoration of her, could not be communicated to her in his poems. If he would have addressed anybody in a lyric it would have been she, as say Wordsworth addressed Dorothy, but this outlet was closed by her inability to read, although he could, of course, recite his verses to her. To this circumstance must in some small part be attributed the public as opposed to the lyric nature of his verse.

At the other extreme, Michael Moon explains that Whitman “remained a loyal partisan of the romances for which he had shared a passion with his mother in his boyhood—books like Scott's Ivanhoe, Cooper's The Wept of Wishton-Wish, and George Sand's Consuelo.” See “Disseminating Whitman,” South Atlantic Quarterly 88, no. 1 (winter 1989), 262. A happy fantasy, but untrue, in that Louisa Whitman is not known to have read any novels during Whitman's boyhood, let alone to have read them with him. In later life she was an avid newspaper reader who was especially interested in politics. [BACK]

27. Richard Maurice Bucke, Walt Whitman (Philadelphia: David McKay, 1883), p. 15. [BACK]

28. David S. Reynolds notes that the house, which had been built in 1810, “was on a tract of sixty acres that Walter Whitman at first leased and then bought at sheriff's sale … on April 21, 1821, three years before taking the family to Brooklyn.” See Walt Whitman's America: A Cultural Biography (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1995), p. 25. [BACK]

29. See Berthold and Price,Dear Brother Walt, p. 28. [BACK]

30. Louisa Whitman, November 1863, from the Trent Collection. [BACK]

31. For a discussion of Whitman Senior as tavernkeeper, see chapter 4. [BACK]

32. Louisa Whitman's letters quoted in this paragraph are in the Trent Collection. [BACK]

33. Alternatively, Kenneth M. Price observes, “It is possible that Louisa consciously echoed Walt's language, but the artless way she worked the phrase into her letter suggests that she was not trying to allude to her son's poem. Instead this was probably one of her pet locutions that Walt weaves into his verse.” Price, “Out of Her Cradle,” p. 6. Louisa's letter is dated June 20, 1867, and is in the Trent Collection; further citations in this paragraph are from the same letter. [BACK]

34. There are many directions in which this topic could be pursued. For example, we might turn to Donald Grant Mitchell's Reveries of a Bachelor (1850) and other classics of the sentimental genre that Ann Douglas brilliantly

recanonized (in spite of herself) in The Feminization of American Culture (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1977). Or we might consider the figure of the flaneur in nineteenth-century urban literature, as reflected in the Knickerbocker school of New York journalism with which Whitman was intimately familiar, and as discussed by Dana Brand in The Spectator and the City in Nineteenth-Century American Literature (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1991). Brand describes the bachelor as an “urban spectator detached from ordinary social, familial, or economic obligations” (p. 28). Or we might want to look further at tropes of pastoral lounging in Romantic poetry, as described by Willard Spiegelman in Majestic Indolence: English Romantic Poetry and the Work of Art (New York: Oxford University Press, 1995). Spiegelman's discussion of Keats's addiction to a “wise passivity,” in chapter 4, is especially valuable. Or to the extent that Whitman's loafer is mainly a symbol of sexual freedom, we should consult Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Epistemology of the Closet (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1990), pp. 188–212. Sedgwick theorizes the relationship between the urban bachelor figure in the Victorian context and the larger topos of male homosexual panic. For further thoughts on the bachelor as deviant, see Vincent J. Bertolini, “Fireside Chastity: The Erotics of Sentimental Bachelorhood in the 1850s,” American Literature 63, no. 4 (December 1996): 707–37. Bertolini argues that “the bachelor represented the transgressive triple threat of masturbation, whoremongering, and that nameless horror—homosexual sex” (708). As my text is intended to demonstrate, Whitman's loaferish bachelor persona is also shaped by a very specific psychological and domestic environment. [BACK]

35. Louisa Whitman, August 19, 1868, from the Trent Collection. Louisa was referring to the dog of the Brown family, who occupied the lower part of her house. She disliked them. [BACK]

36. On Walter Senior as a “natural mechanic,” see Jeff Whitman's obituary, quoted in Dear Brother Walt, p. 189. The obituary was based on information supplied by Walt. [BACK]

37. Whitman, “Elias Hicks,” in November Boughs, in Walt Whitman: Complete Poetry and Collected Prose, ed. Justin Kaplan (New York: Literary Classics of the United States, 1982), p. 1232. In speaking to Traubel, Whitman suggested that it was his mother rather than his father who first introduced him to Hicks's teachings, but many of the original Long Island Whitmans had been Quakers, and Hicks (1748–1830) had been a friend of Whitman's paternal grandfather. As a young man on Long Island, Walt Whitman considered converting to Quakerism, and in his last years, he kept a large bust of Hicks in his room in Camden. See Perry, Walt Whitman, p. 257.

For an analysis of Hicksite Quakerism, see Robert W. Doherty, The Hicksite Separation: A Sociological Analysis of Religious Schism in Early Nineteenth Century America (New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 1967). Do-herty notes that “in an age which witnessed the decline in status of people who performed physical labor and at the same time saw the development of economic specialization under the merchant capitalist,” Hicks's rural-based opposition to “Orthodox” leaders who were “wealthy, refined, urban-dwelling businessmen” was powerful indeed (pp. 42, 27). In Philadelphia, for example, forty percent of Hicks's followers were artisans, as was Walter Senior, who would have been part

of the “natural” constituency for Hicks's antiurbanism. For the life of Hicks, who died several months after Whitman may have heard him preach, see Bliss Forbush, Elias Hicks: Quaker Liberal (New York: Columbia University Press, 1956). The term “liberal” is, however, misleading, in that Hicks mainly opposed changes in traditional modes of behavior and belief. [BACK]

38. Hicks, quoted in November Boughs, p. 1226. [BACK]

39. “Elias Hicks,” in November Boughs, p. 1233. At the time of Hicks's speech in the ballroom at Morrison's Hotel in Brooklyn Heights in November 1829, Louisa was nine months pregnant and was about to give birth several days later. [BACK]

40. For a genealogy of the Whitman family, see Allen, Solitary Singer, p. 595. Walter Whitman Senior was born on July 14, 1789 (Bastille Day), and Jesse Whitman died in February 1803. [BACK]

41. M. Wynn Thomas, The Lunar Light of Whitman's Poetry (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1987), pp. 28–29. The internal quote is Sean Wilentz, Chants Democratic: New York City and the Rise of the American Working Class, 1788–1850 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1984), p. 55. For further analysis of the expanding market as it pressured the urban artisan class in antebellum America, see Charles Sellers,The Market Revolution in Jacksonian America: 1815–1846 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1991), and Stuart M. Blumin, The Emergence of the Middle Class: Social Experience in the American City, 1760–1900 (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1989). Thomas's perspective, however, overstates the solidity of class boundaries in Jacksonian America and in Walter Senior's life. Because class boundaries were unstable, Walter Senior's various occupations (as farmer, craftsman, and small entrepreneur) were important in defining his social status. For Walter Senior as small entrepreneur, see chapter 4. On masculinity as constructed by professional competence, see E. Anthony Rotundo, American Manhood: Transformations in Masculinity from the Revolution to the Modern Era (New York: Basic Books, 1993), chapter 8, “Work and Identity.” And for a sensitive analysis of the poet's anomalous class position, see David Leverenz, Manhood and the American Renaissance (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1989), passim. He suggests that Whitman's public voice combines “an artisan's insouciance with entrepreneurial brag” (p. 106). [BACK]

42. Betsy Erkkila probably overstates the case for Whitman's father as a reader in Whitman the Political Poet (New York: Oxford University Press, 1989), when she asserts that “copies of the major freethinking texts—Volney's The Ruins (1791), Paine's The Age of Reason (1791), and Wright's A Few Days in Athens (1822)—were cherished books in the Whitman household” (p. 15). Whitman does not claim that his father was a reader of anything except the Free Enquirer (WWWC 2:205), and his statement “Books were scarce” aptly applies not only to the home of his paternal grandparents but also to the home in which he was raised. Erkkila makes a compelling case, however, for Walt Whitman's responsiveness to Volney's critique of religious orthodoxy as “a primary source of human oppression” (p. 113). [BACK]

43. According to Clara Barrus, “Burroughs once told me that he understood Walt's father had at one time been addicted to alcohol, and that Walt thought

this habit might have been responsible for Ed's condition. He [Burroughs] instanced a line in ‘Faces’ as referring to this—‘I knew [of] the agents that emptied and broke my brother.’” See Barrus, Whitman and Burroughs, p. 254. [BACK]

44. The relationship between Whitman's formal schooling and his youthful work needs to be further explored. Intuitively, I agree with the analysis offered by Floyd Stovall, in The Foreground of “Leaves of Grass” (Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 1974), pp. 23–24. Stovall speculates that Whitman continued to attend school intermittently after he began working for the Clarkes and that “this and his first jobs in newspaper offices in 1831 and 1832 occupied all his time throughout the year. There were two or three school terms during the year, each usually lasting only three or four months. It seems probable that Whitman continued to attend school in Brooklyn for a few months each year until the summer of 1833, when his family moved back to the country.” Stovall further suggests, following Bucke's lead in Walt Whitman, that Whitman attended the (Union Hall) Academy in Jamaica. [BACK]

45. Allen, Solitary Singer, p. 17. [BACK]

46. On apprenticeship as an exclusively male institution, “a system of education and job training by which important practical information was passed from one generation to the next,” “a mechanism by which youths could model themselves on socially approved adults,” “an institution devised to insure proper moral development through the master's fatherly responsibility for the behavior of his apprentice,” and “a means of social control imposed upon potentially disruptive male adolescents,” see W. J. Rorabaugh, The Craft Apprentice: From Franklin to the Machine Age in America (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986), pp. vii-viii and passim. Rorabaugh notes that “although printing at-tracted boys who had some fascination for the written word, such apprentices came from the same sorts of backgrounds as other apprentices and entered a craft that stood socially and economically on a par with or only modestly above other crafts.” [BACK]

47. Possibly some of these moves were due to his father's restlessness. And some of them reflected bad luck. See Whitman's wistful and angry comments in NUPM 1:10–11. In Walt Whitman's America, Reynolds suggests that “the restlessness and unhappiness Whitman associated with his childhood had less to do with a uniformly hostile relationship with his father than with his unstable po-sition in a changing economic and social order. … Previous biographers have described a ‘buy, build, and sell’ pattern in Walter Whitman's business dealings, suggesting that through speculation he at least kept his head above water. Real estate records show that the picture was not that rosy.” See this richly contex-tualized discussion on pp. 24–25 and passim. So far as I know, however, no in-formed biographer has suggested that Whitman's relationship with his father was uniformly hostile. [BACK]

48. Whitman, quoted in Charles I. Glicksberg, Walt Whitman and the Civil War (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1933), pp. 53–54. [BACK]

49. This was probably the period during which there were “stormy scenes” with his father who, “when aroused,” was “capable of memorable vehemence.” See “Introduction,” in Complete Writings of Walt Whitman, ed. Richard Mau-rice Bucke, Thomas B. Harned, and Horace L. Traubel, 10 vols. (New York:

G. P. Putnam, 1902), 1:xvi. But Whitman resisted Walter Senior's attempts to get him to help with the farm work, and was teaching in Norwich beginning in June. Apparently the Whitmans moved to Babylon, further out on the Island, in the summer of 1836 where they remained until May 1840. See UPP 2:87. Whit-man was teaching “west of Babylon” during the winter of 1836–37. His living arrangements during this time are not clear. For a helpful map of Long Island geography and of Whitman's whereabouts during these unsettled years, see Al-len, Solitary Singer, p. 27.

The family's economic fortunes had probably improved by 1836, however, when Walter Senior sold land that he had inherited from his mother and his brother for $2,250, which was the equivalent of three or four years’ salary for the average carpenter at that time. See Joseph Jay Rubin, The Historic Whitman (University Park: Penn State University Press, 1973), pp. 32–33, and Reynolds, Walt Whitman's America, p. 55. There are discrepancies between these two accounts, but both Rubin and Reynolds agree that land played a role in Walter Se-nior's fortunes. Reynolds further notes that he had been able to hold onto the sixty acres he purchased in 1821 and to add to them, so that in 1836 he sold more than a hundred acres to the farmer Richard Colyer, whose wife, Hannah, was the daughter of Walter's sister Sarah. These inheritances, purchases, and sales are relevant in assessing the class identification of Walter Senior, which was more complicated than descriptions of him as a dissatisfied artisan might suggest. [BACK]

50. Emory Holloway suggests that “Archie's unusually confiding attitude toward his mother parallels Whitman's affection for his ‘perfect mother’” (UPP 1:232 n). But the story contains a good mother (the victim-confidante) and a bad mother (the repulsive spinster who teaches him the meaning of hard work). These figures are united in that Archie's mother fears that he won't “‘excel.’” “Ah, for how many the morose habit which Archie rooted out from his nature,” Whitman concludes, “becomes by long usage and indulgence rooted in, and spreads its bitterness over their existence, and darkens the peace of their families, and carries them through the spring and early summer of life with no inhale-ment of sweets, and no plucking of flowers!” (EPF 330). The “ancient, bony, yellow-faced maiden … who seem[s] to be on good terms with everybody” but whose driving ambition shrivels “all other passions,” is probably a displaced version of Louisa herself. Although Archie is a passive-aggressive hero who feels “this [clever] old maid's doings as a rebuke—a sharp-pointed moral to himself and his infirmity of purpose,” his sympathy, and Whitman's, for “the small payment which is given to female labor” is genuine. Nevertheless, hostility that might have been directed toward the father's fecklessness is projected onto the bad, hard-driving mother, of whom it was said that she had been “handsome” in her youth. [BACK]

51. This was the period, as Whitman recalled in an 1887 article, in which he was legally exonerated for thrashing a neighbor's boy who interfered with his fishing. He triumphed in court, speaking in his own defense. See Justin Kaplan, Walt Whitman: A Life (New York: Simon and Schuster, 1980), pp. 84, 135, and Reynolds, Walt Whitman's America, pp. 58–59. [BACK]

52. Whitman, quoted in Grace Gilchrist, “Chats with Walt Whitman,” Temple Bar Magazine 113 (February 1898): 208. [BACK]


53. Herbert Bergman and William White, “Walt Whitman's Lost ‘Sun-Down Papers,’ Nos. 1–3,” American Book Collector 20 (January 1970): 18–19. [BACK]

54. “Sun-Down Papers,” in UPP 1:37. [BACK]

55. Katherine Molinoff, An Unpublished Whitman Manuscript: The Record of the Smithtown Debating Society, 1837–38 (Brooklyn: Comet Press, 1941). [BACK]

56. There have been a number of interesting studies of Whitman and William Cullen Bryant. In Whitman and Tradition: The Poet in His Century, Kenneth M. Price notes that “Our Future Lot” echoes lines and phrases from “Thanatopsis” (pp. 56–57), as it surely does. On McDonald Clarke, see Reynolds, Walt Whitman's America, pp. 88–90. The so-called “Mad Poet of Broadway” died in a New York City prison on March 5, 1842; Whitman memorialized him in the Aurora several days later. In “The Death and Burial of McDonald Clarke. A Parody” (EPF 25–26), Whitman imitates the form of Charles Wolfe's “The Burial of Sir John Moore at Corunna” (1817). (Wolfe was an Anglo-Irish curate; Sir John Moore was a military leader in the British campaign against Napoleon.) Thomas L. Brasher notes, “Whitman's parody is identical in meter, and in the form and number of stanzas, with Wolfe's poem. Whitman borrowed verbatim one line from Wolfe, which appears as the second line of his fourth stanza. For the rest he was content with a general parallel of Wolfe's ideas” (EPF 25 n). Whitman seized the occasion of Clarke's death to condemn the hypocrisy and hardheartedness of the reading public. [BACK]

57. Orvetta Hall Brenton, in UPP 1:xxxiii-iv n. 1. [BACK]

58. James J. Brenton, in Rubin, The Historic Whitman, pp. 223, 244. [BACK]

59. As Carroll Smith-Rosenberg notes in “Davy Crockett as Trickster,” in Disorderly Conduct: Visions of Gender in Victorian America (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1985), “The nation extolled ambition, change, and individualism at the same time that it continued to praise the family and traditional social order” (p. 99). “Tomb Blossoms” slyly exemplifies this conflict. “Men of cities!” a trick-sterish Whitman writes, “what is there in all your boasted pleasure—your fashions, parties, balls, and theatres, compared to the simplest of the delights we country folk enjoy?” (EPF 88). [BACK]

60. Ellen Moers, Literary Women (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1976). [BACK]

61. Whitman, as quoted in Arthur Golden, “Nine Early Whitman Letters, 1840–1841,” American Literature 58, no. 3 (October 1986): 347–48. [BACK]

62. Whitman, in Golden, “Nine Early Letters,” 349–50. Mosher is un-identified. [BACK]

63. Whitman, in Golden, “Nine Early Letters,” 351–52. [BACK]

64. Henry James, in CH, p. 260. James's review of Calamus, ed. R. M. Bucke (Boston: Laurens Maynard, 1897), appeared as an “American Letter” in Litera-ture on April 16, 1898. [BACK]

65. Golden, “Nine Early Letters,” 352–53 n. 22. Golden adds that “this would not have been an early expression of the ‘Calamus’ sentiment on Whit-man's part.” For a related contemporary context, see “Youth and Male Inti-macy,” in Rotundo, American Manhood, pp. 56–91. He describes “intimate attachments that verged on romance” (p. 75) and suggests that “most young men enjoyed at least one strong friendship” (p. 76). Rotundo further argues that these “romantic friendships of male youth closely resembled the intense bonds

between women first portrayed by Carroll Smith-Rosenberg in her landmark article, ‘The Female World of Love and Ritual,’” but that “the intimate ties between young men of the nineteenth century differed from those described by Smith-Rosenberg in at least one fundamental way. Among males, romantic friendship was largely a product of a distinct phase in the life cycle—youth” (p. 76). See also Donald Yacovone, “Abolitionists and the ‘Language of Frater-nal Love,’” in Meanings for Manhood: Constructions of Masculinity in Vic-torian America, ed. Mark C. Carnes and Clyde Griffen (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1990), pp. 85–95. Yacovone argues, “The freedom with which many abolitionists expressed their love and devotion, and the open ritualistic nature of their relationships, calls for a reconsideration of the commonplace view that Victorian men were emotionally inexpressive and hypermasculine” (p. 85). He further contends that although antebellum Americans accepted no single definition of manhood, “They displayed a variety of phases or types of masculinity which sometimes blurred gender distinctions in ways that would disturb contemporary Americans. This modern reaction to intimate male friendships underscores the profound changes which have occurred in the culture's perception of masculinity. To a surprising degree, mid-nineteenth-century social attitudes permitted great liberty in personal relations, largely untainted by ho-mophobia” (p. 86). Thus, whereas Rotundo emphasizes life cycle effects, Yaco-vone purports to have identified a more lasting pattern of socially unproblem-atic male-male intimacy. Whitman's confidential relationship with Leech does, however, appear to be restricted to youth. [BACK]

66. Whitman, in Golden, “Nine Early Letters,” 353. [BACK]

67. This association surfaces again in the tenth “Sun-Down Paper,” pub-lished a year later. Whitman describes a pleasure party on the South Bay during which he observed, “One of us, a married man, had come from home without his breakfast; whereupon an inquiry was instituted that resulted in bringing out the astounding fact that every married man in the company was in the like predicament. An evil-disposed character among us was ungallant enough to say that the fact was a fair commentary on matrimonial comfort.” Ungallant or not, Whitman's observation stuck. Married men get no breakfast. See UPP 1:48–51. [BACK]

68. His business correspondence was more extensive. The 1857 letter to the Philadelphia abolitionist Sarah Tyndale combines business and pleasure; see Corr 1:42–43. [BACK]

69. Leech's drafts are in the Feinberg Collection of the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. [BACK]

70. For more on Leech's political and temperance activities, and for a fascinating reading of him as an educated and religious person, see Jerome Loving, Walt Whitman: The Song of Himself (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999), pp. 71–72, 41–42. The Whitman quotation is from “Sun-Down Paper,” no. 5, in UPP 1:33. The essay was published in Brenton's Long Island Democrat on April 28, 1840. [BACK]

71. On drinking as a male prerogative and on temperance as an attack on masculine culture, see Mary Ann Clawson, Constructing Brotherhood: Class, Gender, and Fraternalism (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1989), chapter 5, “Social Fraternalism and the Artisanal Ideal,” pp. 145–177. Much of what

Clawson observes about emerging bourgeois sociability is relevant to my discussion of temperance fiction in the next chapter. [BACK]

72. Whitman, in Golden, “Nine Early Letters,” 355–56. [BACK]

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