Text: J. W. Ostrom, B. R. Pollin, and J. A. Savoye, “Chronology,” The Collected Letters of Edgar Allan Poe — Vol. I: 1824-1845 (2008), pp. xxxv-xlii (This material is protected by copyright)


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


[page xxxv, unnumbered:]

Chronology

1809, Jan. 19   Edgar Poe is born in Boston, MA, the son of travelling actors Elizabeth Arnold Poe and David Poe, Jr. (see notes to LTR-317).
1811, Dec. 8   Edgar’s mother dies in Richmond, VA. His father apparently dies about the same time (see LTR-52). John and Frances Keeling Allan become Poe’s foster parents, and he is christened Edgar Allan Poe (see LTR-38).
1815, June - July, 1820   Poe is in England and Scotland with the Allans. (Descriptions of his school in Stoke Newington, the Manor House School, and its headmaster, Rev. John Bransby, appear two decades later in Poe’s tale “William Wilson.”)
1820, July - Feb. 14, 1826   Poe and the Allans return home to Richmond, VA. Probably in June of 1824 or 1825, he swims several miles up the James River (see LTR-42).
1826, Feb. 14 - Dec.   Poe attends classes at the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, and incurs large gambling debts. John Allan’s resulting wrath puts an end to his studies (see LTR-3 and LTR-28).
1826, Dec. - March 1827   Poe leaves John Allan’s house in Richmond, VA. About March 24, he sails to Boston, perhaps using the alias Henri le Rennét (see LTR-5 and LTR-6).
1827, May 26   Poe enlists in the United States Army at Boston under the name Edgar A. Perry. He is stationed at Fort Independence, Boston Harbor (see LTR-7).
1827, Summer (?)   Calvin F. S. Thomas, in Boston, publishes Poe’s Tamerlane and Other Poems, noted on the cover only as “by a Bostonian.” A few copies of the unprepossessing pamphlet of forty pages are sent [page xxxvi:] out for review, but it is apparently never officially distributed for sale.
1828 Nov. 8   Poe’s battery sails for Fort Moultrie, Charleston, SC (see LTR-7).
1828, Dec. 11   Poe’s battery is transferred to Fortress Monroe, VA (see LTR-8, LTR-9, and LTR-10).
1829, Feb. 28   Frances Keeling Allan dies (see note to LTR-28).
1829, April 15   Poe is discharged from the Army, and returns to Richmond. John Allan pays for a replacement, Sergeant Samuel “Bully” Graves (see LTR-14).
1829, May   Poe leaves Richmond for Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD. He lives with or near his aunt, Maria Clemm (see LTR-15).
1829, Dec.   Hatch and Dunning, in Baltimore, MD, publishes Poe’s Al Aaraaf, Tamerlane, and Minor Poems (see LTR-23).
1830, early   Poe briefly returns to Richmond before May 3.
1830, May 3-21   Poe leaves Richmond en route to West Point, NY, as an appointee to the U. S. Military Academy. He stops over in Baltimore to visit relatives.
1830, ca. June 20   Poe is at West Point, until he contrives his own court-martial and expulsion (see LTR-28).  
1830, Oct. 5   John Allan marries his second wife, Louisa Gabriella Patterson. Over the next four years, she bears him three sons: John, Jr. (1831), William Galt (1832), and Patterson (1834).
1831, Feb. 19   Attracted by its prominence as a center of publishing, Poe goes to New York City.
1831, Spring   Poe’s Poems, dedicated to the cadets of West Point, is published by Elam Bliss in New York. [page xxxvii:]
1831, ca. Spring   Poe returns to Baltimore, at some point moving in with Mrs. Clemm and her family. His financial circumstances are dire, and he continues to plead for money from John Allan (see LTR-32).
1831, August 1   William Henry Leonard Poe, Edgar’s brother, dies in Baltimore (see note to LTR-29).
1833, Oct.   Poe wins the Baltimore Saturday Visiter contest with “MS. Found in a Bottle” (see LTR-46).
1834, March 27   John Allan dies without mentioning Poe in his will (see note to LTR-36).
1835, July-Aug.   Poe moves back to Richmond, and joins the staff of the Southern Literary Messenger.
1836, May 16   Poe, aged 27, marries his first cousin, Virginia Eliza Clemm, aged 13. (An earlier ceremony in Baltimore is attributed by family tradition.)
1837, Jan.   Poe loses his editorship of the Southern Literary Messenger, January 3, but remains in Richmond until at least January 19 (see note to LTR-76).
1837, Feb.   Poe visits New York (see LTR-77).
1838, before July   Poe moves to Philadelphia, PA (see LTR-77a).
1838, July   The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, Poe’s only novel, is published by Harper & Brothers in New York. An English edition also appears.
1839, ca. April   The first edition of The Conchologist’s First Book is published over Poe’s name by Haswell, Barrington, & Haswell, in Philadelphia (see LTR-249). A second edition is published in 1840, and a third, without Poe’s name, in 1845.
1839, June   Poe becomes co-editor of Burton’s Gentleman’s Magazine, supplying reviews and other material. [page xxxviii:]
1839, Dec.   Poe’s two-volume collection of Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque is published by Carey, Lea, & Carey in Philadelphia, but does not sell well (see LTR-85 and LTR-87).
1840, June   Poe leaves the editorship of Burton’s but remains in Philadelphia (see LTR-93 and LTR-95).
1840, June 13   A prospectus of Poe’s projected Penn Magazine appears in the Philadelphia Saturday Courier.
1841, Feb.   Poe becomes an editor of Graham’s Magazine.
1842, Jan.   Virginia Poe’s lingering illness makes itself apparent, beginning her long, ultimately fatal decline, and driving Poe to intermittent but serious bouts of drinking (see LTR-132, LTR-135, LTR-141, and LTR-259).
1842-1843   Poe prepares a revised edition of Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque, to be called Phantasy Pieces, but which is never published. (Only volume I, heavily marked by Poe, survives.)
1842, April   Poe gives up his editorship of Graham’s (see LTR-134), but remains in Philadelphia. (His replacement is Rufus Wilmot Griswold.) He continues the fruitless efforts to establish his own magazine, changing the title from the Penn to the Stylus (see LTR-139, LTR-140, and LTR-153).
1843, Feb. 25   The Philadelphia Saturday Museum prints Poe’s biography, with a portrait, and an announcement that the Stylus will be published July 1, 1843 (see LTR-153). The article is reprinted in the issue for March 4, 1843.
1843, March   Poe, through his friends F. W. Thomas and J. E. Dow, attempts to obtain a government clerkship (see LTR-134 and LTR-135). His prolonged and [page xxxix:] sometimes desperate efforts ultimately result in failure (see LTR-148, LTR-153, and LTR-156).
1843, June   Poe wins the Dollar Newspaper prize of $100 with “The Gold-Bug.” Its popularity demands several reprints (see LTR-175).
1843, July   The Prose Romances of Edgar A. Poe, reprinting two tales, is published by William H. Graham (the brother of George R. Graham) in Philadelphia.
1843, Nov. 21   Poe delivers the first of his lectures on “American Poetry,” beginning in Philadelphia.
1844, April 7   Poe and Virginia move to New York, with Mrs. Clemm shortly to follow (see LTR-174).
1844, ca. Oct.   Poe joins the staff of the New-York Mirror as a “critic and subeditor” (see notes to LTR-174a).
1845, mid-Jan. - early Feb.   ”The Raven” appears in the American Review (New York) and the Evening Mirror (New York). It is an immediate sensation, and widely reprinted.
1845, February   James Russell Lowell’s biographical article on Poe, with an engraved portrait, appears in Graham’s Magazine (see LTR-185).
1845, Feb. 22   Poe becomes an editor of the Broadway Journal (see LTR-197).
1845, before June 27   Poe’s Tales, a dozen stories chosen by E. A Duyckinck, is published by Wiley & Putnam in New York (see LTR-192a). Poe is not entirely happy with the selections, particularly the omission of “Ligeia.”
1845, July 12   Poe becomes sole editor of the Broadway Journal.
1845, Oct. 16   Poe appears at the Boston Lyceum, where he reads a selection from “Al Aaraaf” as if an original [page xl:] poem written for the occasion, later claiming it was a hoax to test his audience (see notes to LTR-185 and LTR-210a).
1845, Oct. 24   Poe buys out John Bisco, becoming owner as well as editor of the Broadway Journal (see LTR-213).
1845, Nov. 19   The Raven and Other Poems is published by Wiley & Putnam in New York. An English edition is also printed (see LTR-208).
1846 Jan. 3   The Broadway Journal expires (see LTR-225).
1846, Jan. - Feb.   Poe’s The Raven and Other Poems and Tales, a compound book of the individual volumes, is published by Wiley & Putnam.
1846, ca. May   Poe and his family move to a little cottage in Fordham, NY (see LTR-239).
1846, May-Oct.   Poe’s series “The Literati of New York City” is published in Godey’s Lady’s Book (see LTR-227).
1847, Jan. 30   Virginia Poe dies at home in Fordham (see LTR-248 and LTR-259).
1847, Feb. 17   Poe wins a damage suit against Hiram Fuller and the New-York Mirror (see LTR-252, LTR-253a, and LTR-280).
1848, before Jan. 4   A new broadside prospectus is printed for the Stylus.
1848, ca. July 15   Eureka: A Prose Poem, the book form of Poe’s cosmological lecture on “The Universe,” is published by George P. Putnam in New York (see LTR-269 and note).
1848, ca. July 17   Poe goes to Richmond to lecture, and to develop support for the Stylus (see LTR-275a and note).
1848, ca. Sept. 5   Poe returns to New York. [page xli:]
1848, Sept.   Poe visits Mrs. Sarah H. Whitman in Providence, RI, with the intention of offering a proposal of marriage (see LTR-278, LTR-280, etc.).
1848, Oct.   Poe is back in New York.
1848, ca. Nov. 1-13   Poe visits Lowell, MA, and Providence. On November 5, he appears to attempt suicide by taking laudanum (see LTR-286).
1848, Nov. 14 - Dec. 19   Poe returns again to New York, but remains there only briefly.
1848, Dec. 20-23   Poe is in Providence for his planned marriage to Mrs. Whitman, but the ceremony never takes place (see LTR-295 and LTR-302).
1848, Dec. 24   Poe is back in New York.
1849 May 23 - June 1   Poe visits Mrs. Annie L. Richmond in Lowell, then goes to Boston (see notes to LTR-316).
1849, June 29   Poe leaves New York for a lecturing trip to Richmond (see LTR-319).
1849, June 30 - July 13   Passing through Philadelphia, Poe loses his valise containing lectures, and claims to have been briefly arrested (see LTR-323 and LTR-326).
1849, July 14 - Sept. 25   During his stay in Richmond, Poe makes a trip to Norfolk to lecture. He also tries to arrange a marriage with his childhood sweetheart, Mrs. Elmira Royster Shelton, widowed since 1844. The engagement is apparently agreed upon, although Poe is ambivalent (see LTR-332).
1849, ca. Sept. 26   Poe leaves Richmond for Baltimore, with plans to stop by Philadelphia to edit the poems of Mrs. M. St. Leon Loud, with her husband promising $100 (see LTR-334). [page xlii:]
1849, Oct. 7   Poe dies in Baltimore, at the Washington College Hospital. His remains are interred during a small, brief ceremony at the Westminster Presbyterian Burial Ground, at Fayette and Greene streets.
1850, January and September   J. S. Redfield publishes volumes I and II of The Works of the Late Edgar Allan Poe, with volume III (The Literati) appearing later in the same year. (A fourth and final volume would be published in 1856.) Volume III begins with a slanderous “Preface to the Memoir” and “Memoir of the Author” by Rufus Wilmot Griswold, which would cloud Poe’s personal and literary reputation for generations to come. By including a series of letters from Poe, it becomes the first printed collection of Poe letters, although several are now known to be forgeries created by Griswold for his own nefarious purposes. (See material on Poe’s correspondence with Griswold in Appendix A, APXA-Griswold. The forgeries are given in Appendix C, entries SPR-4, SPR-5, SPR-6, etc.)

 


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞


Notes:

None.


∞∞∞∞∞∞∞

[S:0 - CLT08, 2008] - Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore - Editions - The Collected Letters of Edgar Allan Poe (Ostrom, Pollin and Savoye) (Chronology)