Specimen Days & Collect.
Philadelphia, Rees Welsh & Co., 1882-1883.
'Whitman fist planned what would become Specimen Days & Collect in 1863, when, on 12 October, he wrote the publisher James Redpath: "Do you want to print a little 30 or 50ct book about the scenes, war, camp, hospitals &c (especially the &c.)"' (Myerson). The work was informed by Whitman's experiences as a hospital volunteer in the Unionist capital, Washington D.C.
With a partially erased ownership inscription for Louis H. Sullivan(?), possibly the American architect often called 'the father of skyscrapers', whose transcendentalist style was heavily influenced by Whitman's poetry and prose.
First edition, first printing; 8vo (19.5 x 13.5 cm); photographic portrait of Whitman (Myerson Sequence A), ownership inscription in pencil partially erased from title, old bookseller's label to rear pastedown, 2pp. ads. to rear; publisher's ochre cloth, upper panel and spine stamped in gilt (Myerson binding B, BAL C), wear to spine ends and corners, spine darkened, covers marked, signatures slightly loose but holding; vi, 7-376pp.
Myerson A11.1.a; BAL 21422; Wells pp.27-28.
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