Edgar Allan Poe 1809 – 1849 A life as bizarre as his stories…
Edgar Poe Born in Boston, January 19, 1809 Parents died before he turned three Orphaned as a young boy Taken in as a foster child by wealthy tobacco merchants, the Allan family Educated in England from age 6 - 11 At 17, attended the University of Virginia Got himself into $$$ trouble with “daddy”
Poe @ U.V.A. and after… Became active member of the Jefferson Literary Society Passed his courses with good grades Mr. Allan failed to give him enough money for expenses Poe made debts his so-called father did not approve of Mr. Allan refused to let Edgar return to the school They fought! Poe was driven from the Allan home without money Poe went to Boston and published a little volume of poetry, “Tamerlane and Other Poems” It is such a rare book now that a single copy has sold for $200,000 In Boston he enlisted in the U.S. Army
Edgar Allan Poe Edgar attended West Point with help from his foster father Then “dad” cut him off…..AGAIN! Edgar left West Point and moved in with Aunt Clemm in Baltimore Began writing stories Published five stories at age 21 Wrote for magazines and newspapers to support himself and his aunt
Oh, oh… Just when Poe started turning out stories that proved to be successful, his life took on a pattern that would destroy him First he married his younger cousin, Virginia Clemm He would overwork himself, then get depressed and angry Then he’d start drinking heavily His stories were making him famous, but his lifestyle was slowly doing him in
Poe’s Downfall…. His wife died in 1847 Depression drove him to even harder drinking In October 1849, Poe was found unconscious on a Baltimore street He died four days later, at only 40 years old No one still knows exactly what killed Poe It’s ironic that the guy who invented detective fiction died an undetectable death!!!
Some of his most famous tales: “The Cask of Amontillado" (1846) “The Devil in the Belfry" (1839) “The Fall of the House of Usher" (1839) “The Gold-Bug" (1843) “The Mask of the Red Death" “The Murders in the Rue Morgue" (1841) "Never Bet the Devil Your Head" (1841) “The Pit and the Pendulum" (1842) “The Premature Burial" (1844) "Some Words with a Mummy" (1844) “The Sphinx" (1845) “The Tell-Tale Heart" (1842)
Some famous poems: "Annabel Lee" (1849) “A Dream Within a Dream" (1849) “The Haunted Palace" (1839) "Irene, the Dead" “The Raven" (1845) "Spirits of the Dead" (1829) “The Valley of Unrest" (1845) "Visit of the Dead" (1827)