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Relationships of Burroughs, John

To explore the relationships between the various bohemian writers and artists who frequented Pfaff's bar, select a person or group, and then select a relationship type. This section of the site is currently under construction; new content is being added on a regular basis.

Displaying 1 - 14 of 14

Beach, Juliette H. (1829-1900)

Burroughs tried in vain to get Beach to consent to publish the letters between Whitman and herself.

Clare, Ada (1836-1874)

Parry quotes Burroughs's 1862 description of Ada Clare: "She is really beautiful, not a characterless beauty, but a singular, unique beauty" (18). Parry also cites evidence of Burroughs firing back at Clare, "this caustic woman" who "ought to be sentenced to forty years' silence: 'My heart bleeds for Abbey!'" for her reviews of H.A. Abbey's book of poems, May Dreams (29).


Clapp, Henry Jr. (1814-1875)

Burroughs worked with Clapp at the Saturday Press. Clapp also introduced Burroughs to Whitman, as he knew both men through the Saturday Press, which is also how Burroughs took notice of Whitman's work.

Clare, Ada (1836-1874)


Benton, Myron Beecher (1834-1902)

Benton was a friend and correspondent of Burroughs'. Burroughs wrote Benton several times with his impressions of Whitman.

Benton and John Burroughs were friends and members of Ada Clare's coterie.

Whitman, Walt (1819-1892)

Allen writes that Burroughs became an "intimate friend" of Whitman in 1863 (267). Allen calls Whitman's friendship with Burroughs "one of the truly major friendships in Whitman's life" (299).

Burroughs first met Whitman in Washington, D.C., in 1863, but he "had started frequenting Pfaff's beerhall in New York [several years earlier] in the hope of meeting Whitman, whose work he greatly admired."

Whitman co-authored Burroughs's biography.

Burroughs was introduced to future friend Walt Whitman by Henry Clapp at Pfaff's.