Specimen Days & Collect

Philadelphia: David McKay, 1882-'83.

Price: $9,500.00

Hardcover. First edition, second issue with the McKay imprint. Some moderate erosion to the cloth on the spine, paper over the front hinge starting, else a very good copy. Very nicely Inscribed by Whitman to a fellow author: "To Churchill Williams from his friend the Author with love. December 27, 1883." Francis (or Frank) Churchill Williams was the son of a successful playwright, and an 1891 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania (where he was class president in his senior year). Aside from publishing two novels (including an interesting book about Philadelphia politics, *J. Devlin, Boss*), he was an active member of the Philadelphia publishing world as a journalist, editor, and publisher. He apparently was well-known to most of the literary figures of the time, and is recorded as a guest at Mark Twain's 70th birthday party. Something of a literary prodigy at Germantown Academy where he attended high school, Whitman's inscription was written to Williams when the latter was 14 years old, a freshman at Germantown, and already winning literary prizes. Presumably Whitman, ensconced across the river in Camden, was warmly acquainted with young Williams, as the affectionate inscription would seem to indicate. Whitman was an active and agreeable signer, but for whatever reason, *Specimen Days* isn't often found signed by its author, especially with this degree of affection.

Item #56751

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Specimen Days & Collect. Walt WHITMAN.
Specimen Days & Collect
Specimen Days & Collect
Specimen Days & Collect
Specimen Days & Collect
Specimen Days & Collect
Specimen Days & Collect
Specimen Days & Collect
Specimen Days & Collect

Walt Whitman
birth name: Walter Whitman
born: 5/31/1819
died: 3/26/1892
nationality: USA

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Biography

American journalist, essayist, and poet whose style of writing in such works as Leaves of Grass (first edition, 1855) revolutionized American literature. Such poems as "I Sing the Body Electric" and "Song of Myself" asserted the beauty of the human body, physical health, and sexuality. - Merriam-Webster's Encyclopedia of Literaturemore

Collecting tips:

Whitman may well be the great American poet. Because he published so much of his own work, his bibliography can be complicated and detailed. Leaves of Grass (first edition, 1855 - but which he continued to expand upon for most of the rest of his life) exists in two states, and at least three bindings, but suffice it to say that any copy dated in 1855 is desirable, and will be commensurately expensive.more