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The Solitary Singer: A Critical Biography of Walt Whitman

Allen, Gay Wilson. The Solitary Singer: A Critical Biography of Walt Whitman. New York: MacMillan, 1955.

Authoritative biography of Walt Whitman that includes many details about the Pfaff's years.

People Mentioned in this Work

Aldrich, Thomas [pages:229,231]

Aldrich is listed as one of Pfaff's "literary customers" who sat at the large, reserved table against the establishment's far wall. Allen mentions that Aldrich "later went to Boston and became 'respectable'" (229). Allen continues that Aldrich and Stoddard were most likely as "respectable" Howells, "and doubtless none of them were as wicked as they tried to appear" (231).

Arnold, George [pages:229,230,270,494]

Arnold is listed as a "satirical poet" who was one of Pfaff's "literary customers" who sat at the large, reserved table at the establishment's far wall (229). Of the gathered temperments, Allen notes that "Arnold, especially, was quarrlesome, but nearly everyone argued freely and sometimes violently" (230). Allen later notes that Whitman was "no match for the mercurial Fitz-James O'Brien, satirical George Arnold, or perhaps even his sardonic friend Henry Clapp" (270).

Beach, Juliette [pages:243,260-262,263,340,341,342,420,565(n50)]

Beach was one of the several people to whom Henry Clapp sent a review copy of Leaves of Grass, thinking that Mrs. Beach "would do Whitman 'great justice in the Saturday Press'" (243). The return letter Clapp received was not what he expected; it was not signed by Mrs. Beach, but Clapp thought it was from her and printed it as hers in the June 2, 1860, edition of the Saturday Press. Acording to Allen, "The reviewer began by saying that he had read only a few of the poems, but apparently he could instinctively sniff out the most offensive passages" (260). Allen quotes some of the original Beach review, which concludes with the reviewer's advice to Whitman to commit suicide, but not to do it by ordinary means, "because some full man, to whom life has become a greivous burden, may at a later day be compelled to choose between death by the same means and a hateful life, and with the pride of noble manhood turn shuddering to live on, rather than admit so much of oneness as would be implied by going to death as did Walt Whitman" (261). Clapp commented in an editorial that the review that "It always gives us pleasure to print every variety of opinion upon such subjects" (260). The next week, a correction was printed by the Saturday Press, indicating that the paper had received a letter from Juliette H. Beach claiming that the review had not been hers; the review copy had been intercepted by her husband, who had written his own response to the book, which had been submitted to the Saturday Press. The paper had been rushed to press without looking further into the matter. Two weeks later, a review signed by "A Woman" appeared in the Saturday Press. This review argued against the points made in the mistaken Beach review, and may have been Juliette Beach's real review of Whitman's work (261).

Allen also writes that the Beach family dissention over Whitman may have been something more than simply a disagreement over poetry. Allen cites Ellen O'Connor's account that Whitman wrote "Out of the Rolling Ocean" for a "certain lady" whose husband was angred by the correspondence between Whitman and his wife. Allen also cites Clara Barrus' claim that "Miss Juliette Beach" was the woman he wrote this poem for and that "She wrote many beautiful letters to Walt which J.B. [John Burroughs] tried in vain to get her consent to publish" (262). Allen maintains that these may not have been love letters, but that they were most likely encouraged by Whitman for unspecified reasons. "We do not know whether the atraction was physical or mainly appreciative any sympathetic, but it appears that the review copy sent to Mrs. Beach did cause a quarrel between her and her husband, and there may have been an emotional sequel" (262). "Out of the Rolling Ocean" was later published in Drum-Taps (340). Beach is thought to have been one of the two female contributors to the Saturday Press in the summer of 1860, who like Mrs. Gilchrist later, defended the "sanity" and "purity" of Whitman's conversational poems (420).

Allen also mentions that Beach was one of several women who may have known him mainly through his poetry but who found him equally attractive as some women who knew him personally (263). Allen mentions that it is unclear as to whether or not Beach visited Whitman in Washington and that she may have believed herself to be in love with Whitman (341).

Benton, Myron [pages:309]

Benton was a friend and correspondent of John Burroughs. Allen reports that Burroughs wrote Benton several times in 1864 with his impressions of Whitman. Burroughs also asked Benton to arrange a lecture for Whitman in Poughkeepsie similar to those arranged in Washington. Acccording to Allen, nothing came of this request (309).

Booth, Edwin [pages:522]

Edwin Booth was one of the thirty-two contributors who contributed ten dollars apiece to purchase a horse and buggy for Whitman in 1884-1885. The request was made in response to Whitman's worsening lameness in the winter of 1884-1885, and his inability to get around without transportation. Most, but not all, of the contributors were personal friends of Whitman (522).

Brisbane, Albert [pages:130,229,370]

Allen writes that while Whitman was not particularly influenced by Fourierism, his "democratic idealism" would significantly resemble Brisbane's "social optimism" both in language and ideas (130). Brisbane and Whitman met one winter in Washington at the O'Connors'; the two seem to have spoken often, but Elridge wrote that "Walt never yielded an inch of ground to him" (370).

Clapp worked closely with both Brisbane and Greeley to "popularize the doctrines of Fourier and socialism" before editing the Saturday Press (229).

Brougham, John [pages:494]

Brougham is mentioned by Whitman as one of the departed company who used to frequent Pfaff's (494).

Source: Whitman - CW 5:21

Burroughs, John [pages:262, 267, 273, 280, 299-301, 309, 315, 334-335, 363, 374-375, 384, 388, 391-392, 398, 422, 435, 445, 446, 451, 452, 454, 455, 471, 475, 482, 483, 484-]

Allen writes that Burroughs became an "intimate friend" of Whitman in 1863. Burroughs estimated that the sales of the 1860 edition of Leaves of Grass were between 4,000 and 5,000 copies (267). Allen calls Whitman's friendship with Burroughs "one of the truly major friendships in Whitman's life" (299). Burroughs had been reading Leaves of Grass for about two or three years and made at least one unsuccessful attempt to meet Whitman in New York. Burroughs did not meet Whitman until October 1863, in Washington, after Burroughs left his job as a schoolteacher. The two men became friends immediately, and Burroughs began to join the group that gathered at the O'Connor home (299-301).

In the fall of 1862, Burroughs wrote to a friend that Whitman was dining at Pfaff's (273). Clapp also told Burroughs during the fall of 1862 that "Whitman managed to exist on his earnings of six or seven dollar 'per week writing for the papers'" (280).

Clara Barrus claimed that Burroughs attempted to get Juliette Beach to publish the letters she wrote to Whitman (262).

Allen mentions that Burroughs was among some of Whitman's friends who questioned the accuracy of Horace Traubel's records (531).

Extra page #s: 516, 531-532, 537, 541, 571(n63), 576(n48), 594(n153), 584(n147).

Church, William [pages:388,389,394]

William C. Church and his brother Francis were the owners of the Galaxy magazine, started in New York in the spring of 1866. The magazine was intended to be a competitor to the Atlantic Monthly in Boston and Lippincot's Magazine in Philadelphia (388).

Clapp, George [pages:243-244]

George Clapp was said to have personally delivered a letter from Henry Clapp to Whitman in Boston on May 12. George was going to Boston and was able to deliver to Whitman Henry's letter that dealt mainly with the financial problems of the Saturday Press, but also assured Whitman of his success and detailed the plans for publicizing Leaves of Grass (243-244).

Clapp, Henry [pages:229-31,242-244,260,261,269,270,273,280,494]

Allen writes that Whitman began frequenting Pfaff's at some point after Clapp, who had recently founded the Saturday Press made Pfaff's his "informal club and gathered around him a coterie of writers and wits reputed to be very sophisticated, irreverent, and 'Bohemian'" (229). Allen mentions that at this time, the term "Bohemian" was not a common American terms and had been imported from Paris with by Clapp and others, who returned from visits abroad "with contempt for its [America's] puritanism and a mania for shocking it" (229). Allen describes Clapp during this time as follows: "Clapp was a former New Englander who had been a sailor, had educated himself to be a freethinker and skeptic, had aquired a varied experience in journalism, had worked for a while with Horace Greeley and Albert Brisbane in trying to popularize the doctrines of Fourier and socialism, and was not attempting to edit a smart and sprightly literary and critical journal, which did manage to achieve considerable prestige but could seldom pay its contributors" (229).

Allen briefly discusses Howells' interactions with Clapp during his first and only visit to the Saturday Press offices and Pfaff's (230-231). Allen responds to Howells' criticisms of Clapp by writing: "Clapp must have had more character and ability than Howells thought. In Whitman's later opinion he had 'abilities way out of the common,' which in a different environment and with financial resources, 'might have loomed up as a central influence' on American literature. Howells might have been partly right in thinking that Clapp had taken Whitman up because he was so obnoxious to respectable society, and Whitman's gratitude may have led him to exaggerate Clapp's importance. But the editor of the Saturday Press, along with Ada Clare, Ned Wilkins, and several others, did render a service to the history of American literature by giving Whitman companionship and encouragement when he greatly needed them. In his old age Whitman told Traubel that his 'own history could be written with Henry left out.' Since no complete file of the Saturday Press has survived, it is not possible to trace every detail of Henry Clapp's editorial support of Whitman, bt it seems not to have developed unitl late in 1859" (231).

Allen mentions that there is proof Clapp received advance, unfinished copies of the Boston publication of the third edition of Leaves of Grass. Allen also discusses Clapp's strategy for publicizing the book, including his role in sending review copies to several important persons, including Mrs. Juliette H. Beach. During this time period, Clapp appears to have been preoccupied with keeping the Saturday Press in business and managing its financial difficulties. He was able to get a letter to Whitman in Boston via his brother George which discussed mainly his concerns about the stability of the paper, but also assured Whitman of his success and pledged to help him advance his book (242-244).

Allen feels that Clapp was most likely the author of a long article on Leaves of Grass that appeared in the Saturday Press on May 19, 1860. The article began: "We announce a great Philosopher - perhaps a great Poet - in every way an original man." The critic also admitted, however, that the book had passages "which should never have been published at all." The critic also claimed, though, that the poems showed "the philosophic mind, deeply seeking, reasoning, feeling its way toward a clear knowledge of the system of the universe" and celebrated the "felicity of style" in phrases such as "bare-bosomed Night," "slumbering and liquid trees," and "Earth of the vitreous pour of the full moon, just tinged with blue!" (260). When the negative review attributed to Juliette Beach appeared in the paper, Clapp included the editorial comment that "It gives us pleasure to print every variety of opinion upon such subjects." The next week, he ran a correction after Mrs. Beach wrote the paper to explain that her husband had intercepted her copy of the book and had submitted his own review for publication. Mrs. Beach's own review most likely ran two weeks later, signed by "A Woman" (261).

Allen notes that Whitman was "no match for the mercurial Fitz-James O'Brien, satirical George Arnold, or perhaps even his sardonic friend Henry Clapp" (270).

In the fall of 1862, after the Saturday Press had dissolved, Clapp, Ada Clare, and several other Bohemians were writing and working at the Leader (273).

Clare, Ada [pages:229,231,262,263, 273,494]

Ada Clare (born Jane McElheney) was the cousin of the "distinguished" Southern poet Paul Hamilton Hayne. She came to New York from South Carolina in 1855, at the age of 23. She was mostly known for her "wit, good look, and newspaper poems, in which she paraded her private life." Clare was unsuccessful at her attempts at acting. Allen mentions that Clare "supposedly" died of rabies in 1874 and was friends with Whitman, who defended her character after her death (229). Whitman also spoke of Clare and the "other girls" as his "sturdiest defenders, upholders" (263).

Allen writes that Clare's return from Paris gave a "powerful stimulus" to the "noteriety" of Pfaff's and the Saturday Press. Allen claims Clare's trip was for the purpose of giving birth to her illegitimate son. Upon her return, Clare began writing a weekly column for the Saturday Press and assumed the title of "Queen of Bohemia" (229). Allen also mentions that after the dissolution of the Saturday Press Clare, Clapp, and many others from the Bohemian group were writing regularly for the Leader in the fall of 1862 (273).

Ada Clare, Ned Wilkins, Henry Clapp, and others are mentioned by Allen as "[rendering] a service to the history of American literature by giving Whitman companionship and encouragement when he greatly needed them" (231). Allen mentions that Ada Clare and Adah Menken became "great friends," which may have "influenced" Menken's "hero-worship" of Whitman (262).

Curtis, George [pages:361-362]

Allen reprints a September 30, 1865, letter from Curtis to Willaim O'Connor that responds to O'Connor's request for "advice and aid" in seeking a publisher for a draft of his essay The Good Gray Poet. Curtis was the editor of Harper's and wrote to O'Connor:

"The task you undertake is not easy, as you know. The public sympathy will be the Secretary for removing a man who will be considered an obscene author and a free lover. But your hearty vindication of free letters will not be less welcome to all liberal men.

"Personally I do not know Whitman and while his Leaves of Grass impressed me less than it impressed many better men than I, I have never heard anything of him but what was noble nor believed anything byt what was honorable.

"That a man should be expelled from office and held up to public contumely, because of an honest book which no candid mind can truly regard as hurtful to public morality, is an offense which demands exposure and censure."

According to Allen, "Curtis offered to do what he could 'to redress the wrong' that O'Connor had undertaken to right" (361-362).

de Gurowski, Adam [pages:370]

Allen mentions that Gurowski's funeral in May 1866, attracted a lot of attention in Washington. Allen writes that Whitman was "well aquainted" with the count and quotes Whitman on Gurowski: "a strange old man, a great lord in his own country, Poland, owner 30,000 serfs & great estates -- an exile for conspiracy against the government -- he knew everything & growled & found fault with everybody -- but was always very curteous to me & spoke very highly of me in his book, his Diary printed last winter..." (370).

Emerson, Ralph [pages:52-53, 62, 81, 83, 121, 126, 128-129, 130, 132, 135, 136, 141, 151, 152, 153-156, 169, 170, 172, 173-174, 176-177, 178, 179-180, 184, 188, 206, 207, 2]

Allen writes that a series of lectures Emerson gave on March 7, 1842, in New York, included a lecture on "The Poetry of the Times" and it was reported in the Aurora that Emerson mentioned a piece that was "one of the richest and most beautiful compositions, both for its matter and style, we have heard anywhere, at any time." Allen feels that the Emerson's lecture was most likely commented upon by Whitman, as he later mentioned having heard Emerson lecture in New York at this time (52-53).

Allen mentions Emerson's acquisition of a first edition of Leaves of Grass (151). Allen reprints a section of Emerson's letter that expreses his congratulations to Whitman about Leaves of Grass and that also "greets" him "at the beginning of a great career" (152). Allen also engages in a discussion of what Emerson would have found admirable in Whitman's writing and the stylistic and thematic similarities between the two writers' works. Allen also addresses the significant differences between the two writers (153-156). On October 10, 1855, Whitman allowed Charles Dana to reprint Emerson's letter of endorsement of Leaves of Grass in the Tribune without Emerson's permission. This action was taken as a mildly rude affront by Emerson (173-174).

Allen claims that Emerson likely visited Brooklyn at least once, but Allen feels that the majority of Emerson's visits with Whitman took place in New York. Allen writes that Emerson once wrote of taking Whitman to dinner at a fancy New York hotel and then being escorted by Whitman to "a noisy fire-engine society." Allen claims that if Emerson was not shocked, he was annoyed by their destination. While there is no conclusive proof of where they went, Allen suggests that Whitman might have brought Emerson to Pfaff's (206).

In 1860, Emerson's Boston publishers contacted Whitman and proposed publishing an edition of his poems. Whitman arrived in Boston a month later. Allen claims that Whitman's meeting with Emerson on this visit was "apparently Whitman's first important experience in Boston" and during this conversation, Emerson attempted to peruade Whitman not to publish "Children of Adam." Emerson most likely read the poems in manuscript form and felt that their publication would be a bad idea for several reasons, mainly because they might damage the book's financial success. The two men debated the point for about two hours, and when Whitman refused to yeild, the two men went to dinner. Emerson introduced Whitman at the Boston Athenaeum, the famous library, and got him reading privileges on March 17, 1860. During this period, Whitman was almost invited to Emerson's, Thoreau's, and Alcott's Concord homes, but their wives and sisters objected to the idea (236-238).

Whitman mentioned reading Emerson and Italian opera as the "two greatest influences on his mind and poetry" in May, 1860 (242).

Extra page #s: 291, 311, 341, 347, 359, 405, 428, 442, 461-462, 483, 491, 502, 541, 562(n24), 567(n103), 586(n47)

Eyre, Ellen [pages:278-280, 571(n60).]

Allen writes that in the spring of 1862, "when Whitman was roaming the Bowery and writing 'feature' articles for the Leader" he may have had an affair with a woman who is identified only as "Ellen Eyre." This name comes from the signature of an apparent love letter Whitman received at Pfaff's on Tuesday, March 25, 1862. Traubel showed this letter to several friends after Whitman's death and copies were made from the original. Allen reprints a version of the letter (whose authenticity he cannot confirm) on p.279. Allen also mentions that whatever did occur between Whitman and this woman had ended by the middle of the summer of 1862. Allen also notes that Whitman's notebooks mention that he confided the affair to a stage driver named Frank Sweeney on July 8, 1862. Allen mentions that what Whitman means when he says he told Sweeney the "whole story" is ambiguous, but mentions that the term "whole story" "implies something that happened in the past, and a history that Walt Whitman himself regarded as in some way remarkable. If he ever told it to anyone besides Frank Sweeney, that person evidently talk as little as Frank did" (278-280).

Allen maintains that the author of the letter is unidentified, and cites others who claimed to have seen copies of the letter. J.H. Johnston mentions having seen a photograph of an actress who was "one of Walt's sweethearts." Allen maintains, however, that there is no evidence that makes it clear that "Ellen Eyre" was an actress, but there is no evidence that she was not (571 n.60).

The Fred Gray Association [pages:316]

Allen quotes a letter from September 11, 1864, from Whitman to William O'Connor about his trip to New York. In this letter, he writes of his "amusements" that "last night I was with some of my friends of Fred Gray association, till late wandering the east side of the city first in the lager beer saloons & then elsewhere" (316).

Gayler, Charles [pages:208,242]

Allen spells Gayler's name here as "Gaylor." According to Allen, Whitman got his job as an editor at the Brooklyn Daily Times because his political attitudes were in line with the paper and because Gaylor had been fired for refusing to "read proof on the job printing." Allen speculates that Gaylor may have been feeling "independent" in the spring of 1857, having had two plays produced in New York in 1856 and 1857. Also, his duties at the Times may have increased at this time, with George C. Bennett, the owner of the Times, looking to expand (208).

In April, 1860, a comic magazine named Momus debuted, edited by Gaylor. Allen writes that "it contained some verse in which Leaves of Grass was called 'pestilent...rotten and foul' and the author the 'dirtiest beast of the age.'" Allen feels this was a "grudge attack" prompted by Whitman's succession of Gaylor at the Times. According to Allen, Gaylor lived near the Whitmans on Myrtle Avenue and never forgave Walt for replacing him at the Times (242).

Gray, John Frederick [pages:273,316,571(n82)]

According to Allen, Whitman is recorded as dining at Pfaff's in September, 1862, with Fred Gray, who had recently fought in the battle at Antietam (273).

Allen quotes a letter from September 11, 1864, from Whitman to William O'Connor about his trip to New York. In this letter, he writes of his "amusements" that "last night I was with some of my friends of Fred Gray association, till late wandering the east side of the city first in the lager beer saloons & then elsewhere" (316).

In a note, Allen mentions a letter from Whitman to Nat (Bloom) and Fred Gray dated March 19, 1863 (571 n82).

Greeley, Horace [pages:73,120,169,177,212,229,389,427,433]

Whitman shared Greeley's opinion that the Crystal Palace Exhibition was "a thing to be seen once in a lifetime" (120).

According to Brooklyn journalist Charles Skinner, in 1858, compared with Whitman's dress (or affected costume), "Even Horace Greeley, who affected a rustic make-up was more conventional in his costume" (212).

Clapp worked for a while with Greeley and Brisbane to try to "popularize the doctrines of Fourier and socialism" (229).

Howells, William [pages:230-231,301,359-60,365,401,491]

Allen discusses Howells' trip from Ohio to New York in 1860, specifically, his visit to the Saturday Press offices and Pfaff's. Howells had contributed to the paper and was visit New York after being well-received in New England. Howells was not received well in New York, and later recalled meeting Clapp and Whitman at the offices and at the saloon (230-231).

Allen grants that Howells was most likely partially right to think that "Clapp had taken Whitman up because he was so obnoxious to respectable society" (231).

Leland, Charles [pages:506-508, 560 (n140)]

Leland was a Philadelphia writer who translated Heine, wrote a book on gypsies, and helped start an Industrial Art School in Philadelphia in 1881. He was a member of a circle of under-appreciated writers in Philadelphia who befriended Whitman in the 1870s (506). Allen mentions that Whitman read Leland's translation of Heine's Pictures of Travel in 1856 and notes some influence on Whitman's "Out of the Cradle Endlessly Rocking." Whitman also seems to have "admired" Leland for his "easy association with 'Bohemians and bummers'" (507-508).

Mallen, Edward [pages:494]

Mallen, possibly referred to here as "Mullin" may be one of the departed Pfaffians Whitman writes about toasting with Pfaff during his 1881 visit (494).

Source: Whitman - CW 5:21

Menken, Adah [pages:229-230,262,431]

Menken began visiting Pfaff's early in 1860 (229-230). Menken was introduced to the literary circle around the time Whitman was in Boston. According to Allen, Menken was so moved by Whitman's third edition of Leaves of Grass that "she tried to become a disciple and adopt some traits of his verisification" (262). Allen feels that her friendship with Clare was influential in her "hero-worship of Whitman" (262).

Menken had been married twice by the time she joined the Pfaff's circle. Her most recent marriage had been to prize fighter John Heenan, who deserted her in the spring of 1860 when he went to England to fight the British champion. Henry Newell, editor f the New York Sunday Mercury, "had been attracted by this vivacious woman" and began printing her poetry in early 1860. Newell disliked Whitman's work, but Menken was able to convince him to print her "highly eulogistic" review of Leaves of Grass June 3, 1860. According to Allen: "Like the anonymous reviewer in the Saturday Press, she regarded Whitman as a great philosopher, 'centuries ahead of his contemporaries...He hears the Divine voice calling him to caution mankind against this or that evil; and weilds his pen, exerts his energies, for the cause of liberty and humanity!'" (262).

Allen also notes that Menken may have "influenced Swinburne to see in Whitman a prophet of the new social order" when Swinburne was working on some of his European social and political propaganda (431).

Newell, Robert [pages:262]

Newell was the editor of the New York Sunday Mercury. Attracted by the "vivacious" Menken, he began publishing her poetry in early 1860. According to Allen, Newell "strongly disliked Whitman's poems, but Adah Menken charmed him into printing her highly eulogistic review of the new Leaves of Grass on June 3" (262).

O'Brien, Fitz-James [pages:229,270,494]

Allen refers to him as one of Pfaff's "literary customers," and "a clever short-story writer" (229). According to Allen, in terms of debate at Pfaff's, "He was no match for the mercurial Fitz-James O'Brien, satirical George Arnold, or perhaps even his sardonic friend Henry Clapp" (270).

Osgood, James [pages:492,496-500,501,509,590(n185)]

Osgood was one of the most prominent American publishers; Whitman's friend O'Reilly in Boston got Osgood interested in Leaves of Grass, which his firm published in 1881. Allen quotes a letter from Osgood to Whitman where Osgood says, "I am sorry that I was absent from Boston during your visit: I should have been glad to renew the acquaintance I had with you in the old Pfaff days" (492).

Source: Whitman - CW 8:276

The "Osgood edition" of Leaves of Grass is copyrighted 1881, but dated 1881-1882 on the title page and was a compact, 382 page octavo book bound in gold cloth "with title and design on the backstrip, showing a butterfly resting on the forefinger of a hand, stamped in gold." At Whitman's request, the margins were trimmed close to make the book small enough to fit into a pocket. According to Allen, "It was still rather large for most pockets, but it was a plain, neatly printed, servicable, compact volume" (496). During the planning for this edition, Whitman wrote to Osgood that "The book has not hitherto been really published at all" (501).

Pfaff, Charles [pages:228-229,494]

Pfaff is described by Allen as a "German-Swiss" who, by 1854, had bulit a clientele of "writers, artists, and would-be Bohemians" at his restuarant. The restaurant was in a basement in the 1850s, with Pfaff tending bar and the dining room extending beneath the sidewalk and pavement of Broadway. According to Allen, the bar became famous for its wine and liquors, and Pfaff was regarded "by many of his admirers as the best judge of wine in New York, and his good food at reasonable prices became equally famous" (228). Allen continues, "Furthermore, the 'Bohemians' who gathered there created an atmposphere and acquired a somewhat scandalous reputation that attracted the curious, so that this was one of the busiest, noisiest, and most-sought-out by visitors to the city of any restaurant in New York (228-229).

In August 1881, Whitman visited New York and decided to breakfast at Pfaff's restaurant on Twenty-fourth Street. Pfaff was glad to see Whitman, and the two reminisced after "first opening a big fat bottle of the best wine in the cellar" over the "old times of 1859 and 1860 and the jovial suppers at that other Pfaff's on Broadway near Bleecker Street" (494).

Poe, Edgar [pages:44,54,65,71,80-81,342,468,542,552(n20)]

The American Review (later the American Whig Review) was famous in 1845 because of the publication of Poe's "The Raven" in the February edition (65).

Whitman submitted a short essay on "Art-Music and Heart-Music" to the Broadway Journal in 1845. Poe was editing the paper, and printed the essay with an editorial endorsement. Whitman most likely called on Poe shortly after and wrote: "[Poe was] very cordial, in a quiet way...I have a distinct and pleasing remembrance of his looks, voice, manner, and matter; very kindly and human, but subdued, perhaps a little jaded" (71). Allen reprint's Poe's comments in note 20, p.552.

Whitman attended the public reburial of Poe's remains in Baltimore in 1876. Whitman was invited to sit on the platform at the event, but declined the offer to speak, as was reported in the November 16 Washington Star (the account was most likely written by Whitman himself). "Here he was reported to have said in an informal interview that he had long had a distaste for Poe's writings, in which he missed the sunlight, fresh air, and health, but he had recently come to appreciate Poe's special place in literary history" (468).

Raymond, Henry [pages:302,376,381]

Raymond wrote in the New York Times that the rioters of July 13 and 14, 1863 were "not the people" as was reported in the World and the Tribune but "for the most part...the vilest elements of the city," which was to become the view of later historians (302).

On Decemeber 2, 1866, Raymond gave O'Connor four columns on the Sunday editorial page of the Times to review the new Leaves of Grass and discuss Whitman and included his own half-column endorsement of O'Connor's article, "though he still felt that the book was too indecent to be circulated freely." O'Connor's article was so persuasive and well-written that Raymond considered him for an editorial position at the Times (376).

Roosa, Daniel [pages:267-69,290]

He was one of Whitman's friends from the time when the poet visited the sick at New York Hospital during the 1850s. Roosa visited Pfaff's once but was unaware that it was Bohemian hang-out or that Whitman was even a writer. The time of day that Roosa and other doctors visited Pfaff's was not popular among the writers, so the group of doctors never met the Saturday Press crowd. Roosa was most likely unaware that Whitman was associated with Clapp or the other members of that circle. Roosa's impression of Whitman was that he "had no intimate acquaintance with the literary New Yorkers of that time" and he "was not generally considered a literary man" in 1860. Allen argues that while Roosa was underinformed, the general impression he gives of Whitman is correct (267-269).

Ruggles, Edward [pages:323,324,380]

This might refer to Dr. Edward Ruggles, a friend of the Whitman family who was an "eccentric physician and painter in Brooklyn." Jeff Whitman proposed to Whitman to work with Ruggles and John Swinton to aid in obtaining a prisoner release for George Whitman (323).

Dr. Ruggles died in 1867, and was a friend of the Whitman family.

Allen claims that "He sounds very much in some ways like Walt Whitman himself" (380).

The Saturday Press [pages:229-232,242,243-244,260-264,269,273,367,420,471]

Allen describes the Saturday Press as "a smart and sprightly literary and critical journal, which did manage to achieve considerable prestige but could seldom pay its contributors" (229). Allen claims that a complete file of the Saturday Press does not exist and it is therefore not possible to trace the full trajectory of Clapp's editorial support of Leaves of Grass (231).

Allen mentions that while Clapp coordinated reviews, advertisements, and publicity for Leaves of Grass in 1860, he also seems to have been preoccupied with the paper's increasingly precarious financial situation and wrote to Whitman about his worries while also assuring him of the success of the new Leaves of Grass (243-244).

The January 20, 1866, Saturday Press published a review of Drum Taps on the same day Stoddard's negative review in the Round Table appeared. The reviewer called Whitman "much over-praised" and "greatly underrated," and admitted "It is impossible to sympathize heartily with the greatest thoughts that have found utterance in literature, and not to admire him." Allen writes, though, that "each bit of praise was fairly well cancelled by a demurrer: 'What is called his sanity, his tenacious grasp on realities is, after all, the monomania of a man whom a great thought has robbed of his self-possession...His songs, though beautiful and inspiring, smack too strongly of the earth. His suggestions are sometimes vast, but himself is chaotic and fragmentary.' The invocation to death in the elegy contained the 'essence of poetry.' But, 'He shuts himself from hearty sympathy on all sides'" (367).

Stanley, (Henry) [pages:494]

Stanley is one of the departed Pfaffians Whitman writes about toasting with Pfaff during his 1881 visit (494).

Source: Whitman - CW 5:21

Stedman, Edmund [pages:229,479,490,534,594n153]

Stedman is listed as one of the "literary customers" at Pfaff's (229). Allen writes that in 1877, Stedman visited Whitman in June, in Jersey City, when George W. Waters was painting his portrait.

Stedman is listed among the "active and honorary" pallbearers at Whitman's funeral (594 n.153).

Stoddard, Richard [pages:229,231,367,570n26]

Stoddard is listed as one of the "literary customers" at Pfaff's (229). Stoddard and Aldrich are mentioned as those among the Pfaff's company who were most likely as "respectable" as Howells (231).

When Stoddard criticized The Good Gray Poet in the Round Table on January 20, 1866, the critque was "flippant, satirical, and abusive both of the poet and his defender" (367).

Allen makes a mention of an unititled article by Henry Stoddard in "World of Letters," The Mail and Express (New York), June 20, 1898, p.30 (570n26).

Sweeney, Frank [pages:279-280]

Sweeney is described in Whitman's notebooks as "5th Ave. Brown face, large features, black moustache, (is the one I told the whole story about Ellen Eyre)-talks very little" (279). Allen feels that Whitman made a smart decision in confiding to Sweeney about Ellen Eyre, as he never revealed any details or her identity to anyone (280).

Swinton, John [pages:204,229,290,323,324-325,326,336,400,427,482]

Swinton dined with Alcott, Thoreau, and Whitman in Brooklyn in 1856. Allen describes Swinton as "a colorful person, a Scotchman, educated in Canada and trained there as a printer, who had recently returned from Kansas, where he had managed a free-soil newspaper despite the violent opposition of the pro-slavery mobs" (204). Allen also lists Swinton as one of the "literary customers" at Pfaff's (229).

Swinton was managing editor of the Times in 1862, and helped Whitman with his articles about Brooklyn soldiers and their conditions by printing, paying for the articles, and contributing his own money (290). Swinton, with Dr. Ruggles, also assisted Jeff Whitman in helping to bring about George Whitman's release. Swinton was one of the first New York editors to "blow" for Grant, and Jeff thought he might have some influence (323). Jeff urged Walt Whitman to appeal to Gen. Grant through Swinton (324). A letter from Swinton, to Grant, forwarded by Whitman, led to a prisoner exchange on February 13, 1865 (326).

Taylor, Bayard [pages:378,433,463,471,472,477]

Allen mentions that Taylor visited with Whitman around the winter holidays in 1867 (378). In 1871, Taylor, "recently a friend of Whitman" wrote a parody of Whitman that appeared in the Tribune:

"Who was it that sang of the procreant urge, recounted sextillions of subjects?
Who but myself, the Kosmos, yawping abroad, concerned not at all about either the effect or the answer" (433).

This, and other parodies were written in response to Whitman's attempt to substitute for Greeley at the National Industrial Exhibition (433). After this satire, Whitman "detested" Taylor and was disappointed when Taylor was asked to deliver a poem at the Centennial Celebration in Philadelpia (463).

Twain, Mark [pages:96,182,390,522,525]

Twain was one of several parties who contributed ten dollars to purchase a horse and buggy for Whitman in the winter of 1884-1885 to help him get around in light of his worsening lameness (522). Twain was also one of the notable attendees at Whitman's Lincoln lecture at Madison Square Garden in the spring of 1887 (525).

Whitman, Walt [pages:228 and passim]

Allen's book traces Whitman's life and career. Allen discusses in detail Whitman's associations at Pfaff's and his publications and support for Leaves of Grass in the Saturday Press.

Wilkins, Edward (Ned) [pages:231,494]

Ada Clare, Ned Wilkins, Henry Clapp, and others are mentioned by Allen as "[rendering] a service to the history of American literature by giving Whitman companionship and encouragement when he greatly needed them" (231).

Willis, Nathaniel [pages:65,177]

In October 1844, Whitman wrote for Willis and George Pope Morris' New Mirror for two or three weeks (65). Willis, brother of Fanny Fern (Sarah Payson Willis Parton) is described by Allen as "a well-known critic and third-rate poet" (177).

Winter, William [pages:229]

Winter, a "sentimental poet and later dramatic critic" is listed as one of the "literary customers" at Pfaff's (229).

Wood, Frank [pages:494]

Wood is mentioned by Whitman as one of the departed company who used to frequent Pfaff's (494).

Source: Whitman - CW 5:21