top of page

The Tragic Life of the Master of the Macabre

Edgar Allan Poe, the first American to fully live off of the wages of a writer was born January 19th, 1809 to actors Eliza and David Poe in Boston Massachusetts. He was the 2nd of three children born into the Poe Clan. His father would abandon the family in 1810 & Eliza would die the following year of Consumption leaving the three Poe children orphaned and split up to three different homes.

Edgar was taken in by John and Frances Allan of Richmond Virginia. They never formally adopted him either. Edgar had attempted to seek higher education but his gambling debts and frequent rows with his "foster" father eventually got him thrown out of the household all together. He had stayed with that household until 1827 when he enlisted in the US Army under an assumed name and this is when Poe's publication career started.

Tamerlane & Other Poems was accredited to "A Bostonian" upon publication and not long after he had a short reconciling with John Allan who then helped him get into West Point Academy when in 1829 purposely got himself kicked out after declaring he wanted to be a full time writer & poet. That was the final straw for John Allan & from what we know, they never spoke again.

In the next several years Poe became a noted literary critic, distinguished author, & known for his terrorizing stories. He had to move alot for his work and such cities included Baltimore, New York City, & Philidelphia.