Text: Edgar Allan Poe to Thomas W. White — May 30, 1835 (LTR-043)


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Baltimore, May 30, 1835.

Dr Sir,

I duly recd [[received]], through Mr Kennedy your favour of the 20th enclosing $5: and an order for $4.94. I assure you it was very welcome. Miscarriages of double letters are by no means unfrequent just now, but yours, at least, came safely to hand. Had I reflected a moment I should have acknowledged the rect [[receipt]] before. I suppose you have heard about Wm Gwynn Jones of this place, late Editor of the Gazette. He was detected in purloining letters from the Office to which the Clerks were in the habit of admitting him familiarly. He acknowledged the theft of more than $2000 in this way at different times. He probably took even more than that, and I am quite sure that on the part of the Clerks themselves advantage was taken of his arrest to embezzle double that sum. I have been a loser myself to a small amount.

I have not seen M’ Kennedy for some days, having been too unwell to go abroad. When I saw him last he assured me his book would reach Richd [[Richmond, Virginia]] in time for your next number, and under this assurance, I thought it useless to make such extracts from the book as I wished — thinking you could please yourself in this matter. I cannot imagine what delays its publication, for it has been for some time ready for issue. In regard to my critique I seriously feel ashamed of what I have written. I fully intended to have given the work a thorough review, and examine it in detail. Ill health alone prevented me from so doing. At the time I wrote the hasty sketch [page 2:] I sent you I was so ill as to be hardly able to see the paper on which I wrote, and finished in a state of complete exhaustion. I have therefore, not done any thing like justice to the book, and I am vexed about the matter, for Mr K has proved himself a kind friend to me in every respect, and I am sincerely grateful to him for many acts of generosity and attention.

I read the article in the Compiler relating to the “Confessions of a Poet” but there is no necessity of giving it a reply. The book is silly enough of itself, without the aid of any controversy concerning it. In your private ear however I may say a word or two. The writer “I” founds his opinion that I have not read the book simply upon one fact — that I disagree with him concerning it. I have looked over his article two or three times attentively and can see no other reason adduced by him. If this is a good reason. one way it is equally good another — ergo — He has not read the book because he disagrees with me — Neither of us having read it then, it is better to say no more about it.

But seriously — I have read it from beginning to end and was very much amused at it. My opinion concerning it is pretty much the opinion of the press at large. I have heard no person offer one serious word in its defence.

My notice of your Messenger in the Republican was I am afraid too brief for your views. But I could command no greater space in its editorial columns. I have often wondered at your preferring to insert such notices in the Republican. It is a paper by no means in the hands of the first people here. Would not the American suit as well? Its columns are equally at your service. Did you notice the alteration I made in [page 3:] the name of the authoress of the lines in reply to Mr Wilde? They were written by Mrs Dr Buckler of this city — not Buckley.

You ask me if I am perfectly satisfied with your course. I reply that I am — entirely. My poor services are not worth what you give me for them.

The high compliment of Judge Tucker is rendered doubly flattering to me by my knowledge of his literary character.

Very sincerely yours
Edgar A Poe

Mr T. W. White


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Notes:

Poe’s physician in Baltimore was Dr. Buckler. The Mrs. Buckler mentioned was his wife.


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[S:0 - MS, 18xx] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Letters - Poe to T. W. White (LTR043/RCL084)