Edgar Allan Poe

Portrait of Edgar Alan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe was an American writer, poet, editor, and literary critic best known for his tales of mystery. He is widely regarded as a central figure of Romanticism in the United States. He was born in Boston, Massachusetts, USA on 19th January 1809 and died in Washington, USA on 7th October 1849 aged 40. 

Major Works

“To Helen” (1831), 
“The Fall of the House of Usher” (1839) 
“The Murders in the Rue Morgue” (1841)
“The Pit and the Pendulum” (1842)
“The Tell-Tale Heart” (1843) 
“The Raven” (1845) 
“Annabel Lee” (1849)

Biography Timeline

Edgar Allan Poe is born on 19th January 1809 in Boston, USA.

1810: Edgar’s parents separate and his mother Elizabeth takes the children.

1811: Edgar’s mother dies. Mr. and Mrs. John Allan adopt Edgar Poe.

1815: Edgar Allan goes to school in England.

1820: He returns to the United States and continues his schooling.

1826: He attends the University of Virginia and goes by the name of “Edgar Poe”.

1827: He drops out of school because John Allan won’t give him any money. He writes and prints his first book “Tamerlane and other Poems” but as he can’t support himself he joins the United States Army.

1828: He does well in the Army and attains the rank of sergeant major.

1829: Mrs Allan dies and Edgar returns home. Poe and John Allan temporarily reconcile their differences. Poe applies to West Point and John Allan sponsors him.

1831: He gets deliberately thrown out of West Point.

1832: He submits a number of stories to magazines but they are all rejected.

1833: He sends a desperate letter to John Allan asking for help but is ignored.

1834: John Allan dies and leaves Edgar nothing in his will. Poe writes “Berenice”.

1835: He wins a prize for “The Manuscript Found in a Bottle”.

1836: Edgar Poe marries his thirteen year old cousin Virginia in May.

1838: He writes “Ligeia”.

1839: He writes “The Fall of the House of Usher” and “Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque”. He receives no money from his publisher for his short stories.

1840: He writes “The Man of the Crowd”.

1841: He writes “Eleorora”, “Descent into the Maelstrom” and “The Murders in the Rue Morgue”.

1842: He writes “The Mystery of Marie Roget”, “The Oval Portrait”, “The Pit and the Pendulum” and “The Tell Tale Heart”. Virginia Poe breaks a blood-vessel whilst playing the piano.

1843: He writes “The Black Cat” and wins a hundred dollar prize for “The Gold Bug”.

1844: He moves back to New York City. Poe writes “The Balloon Hoax”, “The Purloined Letter” and “The Premature Burial”.

1845: He writes “The Raven”, “The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar”, “The Imp of the Perverse” and “Some Words with a Mummy”. Although Poe was working long hours he still couldn’t make a living.

1846: He writes “The Cask of Amontillado” and “The Philosophy of Composition“. He sues a newspaper for libel and wins. The suit is settled for $225.00.

1848: He writes “The Poetic Principle”.

1849: He writes “Hop Frog”. On 30th June Poe leaves New York City and visits John Sartain in Philadelphia. Poe joins the “Sons of Temperance” in an effort to stop his excessive drinking. On 3rd October Poe is found half conscious and is taken to a hospital.

Edgar Allan Poe died on October 7, 1849 in Washington, USA and was buried in an unmarked grave at the Westminster Presbyterian Church in West Baltimore.