Edgar Allan Poe’s Death Honored in Baltimore

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Poe statue, Baltimore
Poe statue, Baltimore

Boston butted in to honor Edgar Allan Poe last weekend. But Baltimore will claim its rightful October stake to the famed writer’s legacy this weekend. On Saturday (Oct. 11), a ceremony and dramatic reading will be held to commemorate Poe’s death (which happened in Baltimore).

The ceremony, titled “Talking about Poe: Lord Help My Poor Soul,” will be held from 4-6 p.m. at the Poe Monument (515 W. Fayette St.). Along with a chance to honor the writer, performers Don Mullins, Tony Tsendeas and Matthew Bowerman will read “letters, documents and newspaper articles.”

Poe died on Oct. 7, 1849, four days after he was found on the street suffering from a condition that he never fully explained. The cause of death remains a mystery to this day. Some historians believe Poe died of an election hangover.

In those days, politics featured election gangs who were known to engage in “cooping.” They rounded up innocent bystanders, plied them with booze and forced them to repeatedly vote for a candidate. Sounds like a terrible way to go for an American legend. But it seems like we might be able to learn from the part where voting was held in bars.



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