Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Edgar Allan Poe and the Revolution

On a recent excursion to Baltimore and visit to Edgar Allan Poe's grave at Westminster Hall and Burial Ground, I noticed that his grandfather, David Poe, Sr., was also buried there.  Nearby was the original burial spot of his grandson, Edgar Allan Poe.

The senior Poe was born in 1743 in Londonderry, Northern Ireland.  He served as a major in the Continental Army and was Assistant Deputy-Quartermaster general for Baltimore (though at least one source calls this an honorary position).  Sources also claim he donated $40,000 of his own money to the cause.  Lafayette knew David Poe (they are reported to have fought together) and visited his grave on a visit to Baltimore.  In his early biography of Edgar Allan Poe, James Albert Harrison refers to David Poe as a general (possibly because of the quartermaster role) and "devoted friend of Lafayette).  Edgar Allan Poe also met Lafayette.  As for his own military record, Edgar Allan Poe attended West Point but was court-martialed and was dismissed in 1831.  Still, the connection to Lafayette brings Edgar Allan Poe to within one degree of separation to George Washington.

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