Text: George W. Eveleth to Edgar Allan Poe — June 9, 1846


Phillips, June 9, 1846.

Sir — I ought perhaps to have immediately acknowledged the receipt of your letter enclosing my money. I now gladly do so and still more gladly own you a gentleman throughout the whole business, although, with some reason as you will admit, I half believed for a while that you were playing the rogue. Well, I have the long wished for Poems by Edgar A. Poe, Esq. I am pleased to see them in just the plain neat dress that they are in. I hope soon to meet with the remainder of your tales, your essays and criticisms and that — what shall I entitle it? — that work on the New York Literati from the same library of American Books. I don‘t believe the Raven can be beat in versification and but a precious little beyond it to my mind can anything go in beauty of conception. Isn‘t there a false idea though in this? “whose faint footfalls tinkled on the tufted floor?” I don‘t see anything very irrelevant in the last stanza and that Hartford Review man was a fool to think that he could. There might be more ways than one fixed so that the lamplight streaming on the Raven would cast a shadow on the floor within the room. And it might be explained without the aid of [[Ralph]] Waldo Emerson. There is as much poetry (to me) in “The Valley of Unrest,” barring perhaps the four first lines in — The Sleeper and The City in the Sea as in any pieces of the same length which the volume contains. I can see vividly as in a nightmare those trees stirred by no wind that palpitate the whole tone about the sleeper. It almost sets the brain whirling to read the City in the Sea. Why didn‘t you give us more scenes from Politian? That Magazine I‘ll take if you please.

G. W. Eveleth.

Edgar A. Poe, Esq., City New York, N. Y.



The location of this letter is unknown. It was sold at the Bangs auction of April 11, 1896, as part of item 112. The catalogue entry quotes only a portion of the letter, without giving the date. The full text of the letter, including the date, is given in New Shakespeareana (New York, printed for the Shakespeare Society of New York), vol. IX, nos. 2-3, May-September 1910, p. 58. At that time, it may have been owned by Edwin Hill, who is apparently the author of the article. The present text is only the second time the full letter has been printed. This letter is the only one of the original set of twelve which was, apparently, not available to Mabbott in 1922 and not reprinted in his article on Eveleth’s letters to Poe.


[S:0 - MS, 18xx] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Misc - Letters - G. W. Eveleth to Poe (RCL634)