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Edgar Allen Poe's Life

  • Baby Poe is Born

    Baby Poe is Born
    Edgar Poe (the Allan came later) was born 19 January 1809 in Boston to Elizabeth Arnold Poe and David Poe, Jr. The family was dirt poor. (Schmoop)
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    The Life and Death of Poe

  • Edgars Mom Dies

    Edgars Mom Dies
    On 8 December 1811, Elizabeth Poe died of tuberculosis in Richmond, Virginia. (Schmoop)
  • Edgar is Adopted

    Edgar is Adopted
    Edgar was taken in by the family of John and Frances Allan, a well-to-do Richmond couple unable to have children of their own. He added his foster family's name to his own, becoming Edgar Allan Poe. (Schmoop)
  • Poe Becomes an Author and Publishes his First Book

    Poe Becomes an Author and Publishes his First Book
    Poe enlists in the U.S. Army under the name "Edgar A. Perry." Shortly after, his first book—a poetry collection entitled Tamerlane and Other Poems—is published. The author is listed only as "A Bostonian." (Shmoop)
  • Poe Gets Accepted at West Point

    Poe Gets Accepted at West Point
    Poe is appointed to the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. A few months later he publishes his second book of poetry, Al Aaraaf, Tamerlane and Minor Poems. (Shmoop)
  • Poe Gets Kicked out of West Point

    Tired of the military, Poe successfully attempts to get himself kicked out of West Point. When he stops going to classes and chapel, Poe is court-martialed and dismissed. He publishes several anonymous short stories plus another book of poems. (Shmoop)
  • Poe Gets Married

    Poe Gets Married
    Poe—now 27 years old—marries his thirteen-year-old cousin, Virginia Clemm, at a ceremony in Richmond, Virginia. (Shmoop)
  • Poe's First Novel

    Poe's First Novel
    Poe's first novel, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, is published. (Shmoop)
  • Poe's Wife Dies

    Poe's Wife Dies
    Poe's wife Virginia dies of tuberculosis at their home in the Bronx. Poe has been so despondent during the final months of her illness that friends thought he was going insane. The loss of his wife sends Poe into a downward spiral of alcoholism. (Shmoop)
  • Poe Dies

    Poe Dies
    On 3 October 1849, Edgar Allan Poe was found in a Baltimore street (some reports say in a gutter), semi-conscious and wearing clothes that didn't fit him. He was taken to a hospital, where he spent four delirious days before perishing on 7 October 1849. He was 40 years old. (Schmoop)