Explore Edgar Allan Poe’s Baltimore Legacy
There is no denying Baltimore's ties to the macabre poet.
It’s often contested which U.S. city has claim over famed American writer Edgar Allan Poe, but it was here in Baltimore that Poe met his wife, and launched his literary career after winning a short story contest sponsored by the Baltimore Saturday Visiter.
His legacy lives on in Baltimore today, thanks to his original home turned museum in downtown Baltimore. His poem “The Raven” is the namesake of the Baltimore Ravens NFL team. (You can visit the team’s official mascots Rise and Conquer outside the stadium on game day, or in their home at the Maryland Zoo.) And there are a number of food and drink establishments that honor him.
Follow in Poe’s footsteps around the city starting with the home he once resided in and ending with his grave site at Westminster Hall.
Visit his Home
Edgar Allan Poe’s great-grandfather established the family in Baltimore in 1755. Poe lived with his aunt in a small duplex on North Amity Street in Baltimore from about 1832 until the fall of 1835. During this period, he composed poetry, wrote literary criticism and penned some of his earliest short stories like “MS. Found in a Bottle” and “Berenice.” Visit the Poe House and Museum to see the writing desk and chair where he created some of his famous work.
Raise a Glass
Poe’s death is shrouded in mystery—he was found in a gutter in Fell’s Point and suffered from delirium for days before passing—but it’s widely believed that the city’s oldest bar was one of his last stops before his death. The Horse You Came In On Saloon opened in 1775 and today it’s known for its dive bar vibe and live music, but also enjoys the occasional ghost sighting. Want to learn more? Hear the stories on a tour with Baltimore Ghost Tours.
Visit his Grave
Westminster Hall, one of the most historic half-acres in Baltimore, is an architectural landmark. The imposing brick church was built in the early 1850s and several early mayors of Baltimore and heroes of the American Revolution rest alongside Poe and his wife, Virginia. Group tours of Westminster Burying Ground and Catacombs can be arranged year-round for groups of 15 people, minimum.
View his Work
The George Peabody Library in Mount Vernon also houses rare Poe books and a number of original letters he wrote to novelist and politician John P. Kennedy, as well as a large collection of musical settings for his writings.
See his Statue
The Edgar Allan Poe Memorial Association was formed in April 1907 specifically for the purpose of commissioning the statue of Poe, the last work of the great American sculptor Sir Moses Jacob Ezekiel. Today it sits in the plaza of the University of Baltimore’s Law School.
Other ways to toast his success
Visit these bars and restaurants that honor Poe.
This restaurant and bar in the downtown Delta Hotel by Marriott pays homage to Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Tell-Tale Heart.” Small touches such as the ravens on the carpet also hearken back to the famous writer.