Tag Archives: Poe’s life

The Women in Poe’s Life

Happy Women’s History Month! Although the Poe Museum celebrates Edgar Allan Poe, there were many women in his life that supported him, inspired him, and helped him find success and fame. Let’s take a look at the influential women in Poe’s life. Eliza Poe was a renowned traveling actress and mother of Edgar Allan Poe….

Birth of Virginia Clemm

Written by Rob Velella, August 15, 2009, as part of “The Edgar A. Poe Calendar: 365 Days of the Master of the Macabre and the Mystery“ Happy birthday to Virginia Eliza Clemm, who was born August 15, 1822.* She would have been 195 today. What more can be said about Virginia that hasn’t been said…

Edgar Allan Poe and the Culture of Mourning

From train accidents, bridge collapses, and steamboat wrecks, to diseases such as the “White Plague,” or tuberculosis, it is undeniable that the nineteenth century was a witness of tragedy and deep mourning. Although the idea of mourning and mourning culture is not exclusive to the 1800s, it is safe to say the 1800s may have…

Poe’s Early Schooling and Interest in Science

Written by Murray Ellison Poe’s early schooling and military training inspire and shape his interest in science. According to Kenneth Silverman, Poe’s secondary education started after his foster parents moved from England to Richmond. In 1821, “Edgar attended the private academy of Joseph H. Clarke,” which served to prepare young gentlemen to obtain “an honorable…

Private Perry is Mr. Poe

John Limon argues that Poe was one of the first American writers who was important both to the fields of literature and science because he engaged in literary mediation, or “negotiation with science.” Limon notes that Poe’s works provide abundant examples that he anticipated forecasted several future developments in technology, e.g., exploration of the Poles,…

Poe, Lynch, and the Literary Salon Scene

Many who have visited the museum may have recognized the striking portrait of a mysterious woman in the Memorial Building, just above Maria Clemm’s socks and cornered to Samuel Osgood’s Poe portrait. Her eyes follow no matter where you step in the room, her inquisitive gaze and smirk presenting an air of grace, affluence, intelligence,…

New Exhibit Sheds Light on Poe’s Talented Siblings

Above: Edgar’s sister Rosalie Mackenzie Poe In spite of being reared by a frugal businessman who discouraged his writing, Edgar Allan Poe became one of the world’s greatest authors. Why did a boy who grew up in such a home decide to devote himself to a life in the arts? Was Poe born gifted, or…

Poe as America’s Unabashed Critic

Poe was notorious for being a harsh critic-he was nicknamed the “Tomahawk Man,” after all. But are you familiar with these particular criticisms? Check these out: 1) Poe once told a guy to shoot himself. According to Poe scholar Chris Semtner in his book Edgar Allan Poe’s Richmond, Poe wrote a review of author Langston…

A Gentleman, If Not a Christian: the Life of Rufus Griswold

In August of 2014, we covered the scandal between Poe and Rufus Griswold, Poe’s defamer. We went in depth into the situation and analyzed the happenstances leading up to Griswold’s scheme. However, it should be recognized that Griswold was more than just a villainous character in the life of Poe. Rufus Wilmot Griswold was born…

All the World’s a Stage for Bill Burton

“Burton not only lies, but deliberately and wilfully lies . . . Were I in your place I would take some summary method of dealing with the scoundrel, whose infamous line of conduct in regard to this whole premium scheme merits, and shall receive exposure.”-Poe to Joseph Snodgrass, June 17, 1840 Many may be familiar…