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Walter Whitman born May 31 1819 in West Hills Long Island NY died March 26 1892 Camden NJ He was an american poet journalist and essayist whose verse collection Leaves of Grass is a landmark in the history of American leterature EARLY LIFE Walt Whitman was born into a family that settled in North America in the first half of the 17th century His ancestry was typical of the region his mother Louisa Van Velsor was Dutch and his father Walter Whitman was English They were simple farm people with little formal education The Whitman family had at one time owned a large track of land but it was so diminished by the time waltwas born that his father had taken up carpentering though the family still lived on a small section of the ancestral estate In 1823 Walter Whitman Sr moved his growing family to Brooklyn which was enjoying a boom There he speculated in real estate and built cheap houses for artisans but he was a poor manager and had difficulty in providing for his family which increased to nine children Walt the second child attended public school in Brooklyn began working at the age of 12 and learned the printing trade He was employed as a printer in Brooklyn and New York City taught in country schools on Long Island and became a jounalist At the age of 23 he edited a daily newspaper in New York and in 1846 he became editor of the Brooklyn Daily Eagle a fairly important newpaper of the time Discharged from the Eagle early in 1848 because of his Democratic Party he went to New Orleans La where he worked for three months on the Crescent before returning to New York via te Mississippi River and the Great Lakes After another abortive attempt at Free Soil journalism he built houses and dabbled in real estate in New York from about 1850 until 1855
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