- The Trimbles and Whitman 2
W.H. Trimble. Catalogue of a Collection of Walt Whitman Literature. Manuscript. [St Leonards, Otago, 1924]
Trimble continued to update his Whitman Catalogue in manuscript form, and by 1924 his collection had substantially grown. The collection lacks the 1855 first edition of Leaves of Grass, but contains the second, third and fourth editions, and numerous other important early Whitman printings.
The title page of Trimble’s manuscript Catalogue is dated 31 May 1924, which uncoincidentally is Whitman’s birthday. Trimble revered the date of the poet’s birth, and applied the date ‘31 May’ to numerous other documents he wrote about Whitman. Additions to the text on the verso pages show that he was still inserting entries into the Catalogue until his death in 1927.
Annie E. Trimble. Walt Whitman and Mental Science: An Interview. Melbourne: Specialty Press, 1911.
In Dunedin in 1899, William Trimble married his second wife Annie Eliza Nelson, who also became an enthusiastic student of Whitman. Collectively, William and Annie are best known for their Concordance of Leaves of Grass (See WC4). Annie herself composed a 15-page pamphlet Walt Whitman and Mental Science, written in the form of an imaginary interview with Whitman, in which he replies with quotations from his poems.
Annie Trimble died in 1911, aged 48, and the pamphlet was published posthumously in an edition of 200 copies.
Charles N. Elliot (editor). Walt Whitman as Man, Poet, and Friend: Being Autograph Pages from Many Pens. Boston: Richard G. Badger, The Gorham Press, 1915.
Trimble corresponded with numerous Whitman scholars in the Americas, one of whom was Charles Nathan Elliot (1873-1951). Uniform sized sheets of fine note paper were sent by Elliot to as many friends and scholars of Whitman as he knew, with the request that they write, in their own hand, a personal tribute to Whitman.
Both William and Annie Trimble were asked to contribute, and the collated pages were reproduced in facsimile in an edition of 500 copies in 1915. William Trimble wrote, in his distinctive rounded lettering, of Whitman’s “capacity for friendship”.