Skip to main content

Fansler/Whitman Collection

Identifier: MS89

Scope and Contents

The Fansler/Whitman Collection consists of the archival material in Ralph Fansler's collection. Included are the manu­script of his Walt Whitman biography, THE PASSWORD PRIMEVAL, and any notes and correspondence pertaining to it; correspon­dence with publishing companies in attempts to get it published; correspondence with Jessie L. Whitman and others regarding the poet. Much of this material is addressed to "Garrett Newkirk", a pseudonym Fansler used. Original Walt Whitman correspondence has been cataloged separately. Information about Fansler's donation and acceptance by Northwestern University can be ob­tained from departmental files.


  • 1939-1943


Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on use of the materials in the department for research; all patrons must comply with federal copyright regulations.


2 Boxes

Language of Materials



Ralph L. Fansler was an alumnus of Northwestern University and a Walt Whitman enthusiast. Besides collecting Whitman material, he researched and wrote a biography of the poet. In the course of this project he became acquainted with Whitman's niece, Jessie L. Whitman. She gave him some of her signed first editions and other Whitman material.


The correspondence is arranged chronologically, and the rest of the material is sorted by subject.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Fansler donated his entire collection including books, manuscript of the biography THE PASSWORD PRIMEVAL, notes, and correspondence to Northwestern University in 1942.


Guide to the Fansler/Whitman Collection
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Repository Details

Part of the Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections Repository

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Drive
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US