Walt Whitman & the Williams Family

Photo Details

On the lawn of the Williams' house from left to right: Mrs. Francis Howard Williams (face scratched out), Walt Whitman with Aubrey Williams, Marguerite (called Daisy) Williams, and Churchill Williams with gun.

Walt Whitman, of course, was a celebrated American poet. Francis Howard Williams (his family is pictured) was also a poet. Churchill Williams (perhaps the young boy pictured?) was a novelist.

Walt Whitman died on March 26, 1892. On that day, Francis Howard Williams wrote a poem to him:

DARKNESS and death? Nay, Pioneer, for thee
The day of deeper vision has begun;
There is no darkness for the central sun
Nor any death for immortality.
At last the song of all fair songs that be,
At last the guerdon of a race well run,
The upswelling joy to know the victory won,
The river’s rapture when it finds the sea.
Ah, thou art wrought in an heroic mould,
The modern man upon whose brow yet stays
A gleam of glory from the age of gold,—
A diadem which all the gods have kissed.
Hail and farewell! flower of the antique days,—
Democracy’s divine protagonist. March 26, 1892.

Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress
at Germantown, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania USA


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