October 8, 2009

Poe Days

Although Edgar Allan Poe wasn’t born in Baltimore and only spent part of his life here, it is where he died… 160 years ago yesterday. This year marks the 200th anniversary of his birth, so there are celebrations all year long.poeYesterday, in honour of the poet and writer, I stopped by his house where his body was lying and a wake was being held. People have come from around the world to participate in events of celebration this year. poe bookHis death was barely noticed in 1849, with just a simple three-minute ceremony and a few lines in the local paper. However, any past slights will be more than made up for this weekend, when Baltimorean and actor, John Astin (better known to some as the original Gomez Addams) will officiate at the funeral service and introduce scholars who will discuss Poe’s influences which continue today.Poe 003On Saturday morning, a horse-drawn carriage will take Poe’s body the several blocks from his home on Amity Street to the Westminster Burying Ground (conveniently located just around the corner from the University of Maryland’s 200 year old medical school).

For more information, click here for a list of celebrations and times. poe-funeral

Forget Edgar Allan Poe? Nevermore.


  1. My brother sent me a link about this yesterday- I am so glad you went by. We are Poe people. GT

  2. When we moved to Balto in '90 we lived at at Eutaw & Centre St., and I'd pass Poe's grave every day on walk to work at UMAB/Med Center. Thanks for the happy reminder! I so love that Baltimore is Poe-haven and Poe-heaven.

  3. I visited the Poe museum in Richmond last year and it was so well done (I also went to his UVA rooms a few years ago). The museum has a special display on his death, which, fittingly, remains a bit of a mystery.
    I just did a post on mourning traditions in the South - it's so foreign to how we handle death today! Such an interesting event - hope you're able to go.

  4. This would be a great historic site to see!

  5. I can remember being truly spooked by Poe's stories as a kid. Slightly off topic - but I'm a Red Sox fan and in 2004 a Red Sox fan decided, for some reason, to visit the Poe house and hide a little note with a wish on it that the Red Sox would win the World Series. After reading that strange story in 2004, I liked Poe even more. (remember at that time Sox fans were a very supersticious group!)

  6. Looks cool, saw this in the times! Baltimore has us beat, just starting to slow down! Were you aware of the dogfest yesterday?


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