When it comes to the gothic, it doesn’t get much more original than Edgar Allan Poe, and now fans of the author and the genre as a whole can take a tour from one of the gothic grandaddy’s few remaining houses in which he resided across his lifetime. As part of our virtual tour series sit back, relax and learn about the history of this genre-defining creator.
Located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the building has been declared a natural historic site for some time and plays host to thousands of visitors a year.
It is said that in the six years that Poe spent in Philadelphia he was certainly his most productive, and perhaps his most happy. Whilst in the city he produced works including the world-famous Tell-Tale Heart, The Murders In The Rue Morgue and The Gold-Bug. But that’s not all, according to sources, Poe published as many as 31 stories during his time in Philly as well as a few literary criticisms.
Poe rented the property where the Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site now stands in 1843, and lived alongside his wife Virginia and his Mother-in-law Maria Clemm. His time at the site is documented in a letter that Poe sent to fellow writer James Russell Lowell confirming his address for any correspondence.
It is difficult to narrow down which pieces Poe wrote in which residence due to the fact that he moved around a lot, but it is believed that he was residing at the site when he wrote A Tale of the Ragged Mountains, The Balloon-Hoax, and Eulalie.
The home played host to Poe and his family before they moved to New York, and after Poe departed the house was used by several families before being purchased by Richard Gimbel whose father was the founder of Gimbels department store in 1933. Gimbel was a great fan of Poe’s works and after he refurbished the building he dedicated it as a museum to the man. After his death, Gimbel left the property to the state of Philadelphia in the hopes that it would become a national historic site.
Check out the walkthrough video below, and let us know if you can sense any inspiration in Poe’s works from this national monument to all things gothic.
There is also a Edgar Allen Poe themed restaurant in Maryland if you haven’t seen it yet click HERE.