Collection RC0625 - Walt Whitman collection

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Walt Whitman collection

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Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)

Dates of creation area


  • 1854-1913 (Creation)

Physical description area

Physical description

1 photograph album containing photographs and one post card
4 framed collections of items including: 3 photographs; 1 steel engraving; 1 woodcut; and 1 title-page of Leaves of Grass (1900)

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Archival description area

Name of creator


Biographical history

Walt Whitman, poet, was born on 31 May 1819 in West Hills, Long Island, New York. He began to work at age eleven as an office boy. His Leaves of Grass was first published in 1855. He died on 26 March 1892 in Camden, New Jersey. Henry Scholey Saunders (1864-1951) who compiled the photograph album was a Whitman devotee. He wrote a number of privately published books on Whitman, including Whitman Portraits, Toronto, 1922 (9 copies printed) and Whitman Portraits, Toronto, 1923 (4 copies printed). Both of these books, it would appear, were based on the photograph album he compiled. The album was given as a gift to Albert Ernest Stafford Smythe.

Custodial history

Scope and content

The fonds contains photographs, a post card, and other material.

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

The album presumably came to McMaster University with the Albert Smythe fonds in the 1940s. The framed items were donated in the 1980s by an unknown donor.


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There are no access restrictions.

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Further accruals are not expected.

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