Text: Anonymous, “Epigram for Wall Street,” Evening Mirror (New York), January 23, 1845, p. 2, col. 3


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[page 2, column 3:]

Epigram for Wall street

I’ll tell you a plan for gaining wealth,

Better than banking, trade or leases —

Take a bank note and fold it up,

And then you will find your money in creases!

This wonderful plan, without danger or loss,

Keeps your cash in your hands, where nothing can trouble it;

And every time that you fold it across,

‘Tis as plain as the light of the day that you double it!

This is decidedly one of the best jeux d’esprit we have met in a year. Who did it? — who?


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Notes:

This humorous trifle was first attributed to Poe by Thomas Ollive Mabbott. There are distinct similarities in this presentation of a query to one in the same paper from only a few months before for Poe’s “The Literary Life of Thingum Bob.” At this time, Poe was associated with the Evening Mirror as a sort of subeditor. There are certainly other examples of such humor in Poe’s works, even in verse, and the attribution is generally accepted with only minor reservations.

For whatever reason, the word “street” in the title is not capitalized in the original.

In correspondence from Enrico Brandoli, of Italy, to the Poe Studies Association, this poem was revealed as an item that was being circulated in the New York newspapers around January 1845. The original source appears to be a British newspaper called the Somerset County Herald, and Great Western Advertiser. As such, the poem was clealy not written by Poe, whether or not he may have been responsible for reprinting it in the Mirror. Thus, it may be removed from the Poe canon. (See Enrico Brandoli, “ ‘Epigram for Wall Street’: Who did it? Who?” Edgar Allan Poe Review, Fall 2011, vol. XII, no. 2, pp. 58-63.)


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[S:3 - EM, 1845] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Works - Rejected - Epigram for Wall Street