It’s time to celebrate! Virginia Eliza Clemm Poe, wife and muse of Edgar Allan Poe, turns 200 on Monday. We will commemorate the occasion with a special Gothic Tea Party and Summer Reception at Westminster Hall & Burying Ground on Saturday, August 13, at 2PM. (Note: Tickets have sold out! Join the waitlist on the Eventbrite page.) Can’t join us? We will stream highlights from the Reception and a special Happy Birthday to Virginia Poe on Monday, 7PM Eastern, on our Facebook & YouTube pages.
Our most poetical year of programming won’t end with Virginia’s birthday, however: several of this year’s International Edgar Allan Poe Festival & Awards events, including the VIP Death Weekend Bus Tours and the NEW Edgar & Virginia Poe Death Exhibit exploring the hidden-history of this enigmatic figure in Poe’s life.
More celebration is in order: Official Nominees for the 2022 Saturday Visiter Awards have been announced! Read our newsletter to see this year’s selection of Poe-inspired works. More about these extraordinary creators coming soon.
Yours in Poe, Enrica Jang
Director, Poe Baltimore
The International Edgar Allan Poe Festival & Awards returns for a fifth year in Baltimore, October 8 & 9th, 2022. This is a FREE community event, but VIP Death Weekend Bus Tours and tickets for The Black Cat Ball are ON SALE now. This year’s party is Gothic Wedding themed; VIP ticket-holders pledge to love and honor a partner, friend, or even yourself for your eternal afterlives in a special ceremony in the Westminster Hall Catacombs.
Tickets are also available for the Edgar & Virginia Poe Death Exhibit. Death tableau and memento mori (some items made from human hair!) will be part of this haunting exhibit at Westminster Hall. Don’t want to wait? Enjoy a special preview of the exhibit at our final session in the Virginia Poe Bicentennial Discussion Series on July 19 as we present MOURNING, The Strange Afterlives of Edgar and Virginia Poe. You may also join us for a Gothic Tea Party & Summer Reception at Westminster Hall as we celebrate Virginia Poe’s 200th birthday, August 13.
There’s nothing lazy about Summer days at Poe House, though much of the action will be virtual this month.
First, we interrupt our most poetical year of Virginia Poe programming for a Father’s Day parley: join us for “Allan vs. Poe” a discussion about Edgar Allan Poe, John Allan, and fatherhood with POEtic Justice Productions of Ayrshire, Scotland, ancestral home of the man who put the Allan in Edgar Allan Poe.
Finally, this is the last month for PAVERS FOR POE FEST pre-sales before tickets for the International Edgar Allan Poe Festival & Awards go on sale July 1. Look for announcements and a peek at the festival sizzle reel later this month. Read our newsletter for more!
Yours in Poe, Enrica Jang
Director, Poe Baltimore
“The angels, whispering to one another
Can find, among their burning terms of love
None so devotional as that of ‘Mother.’”
Despite being orphaned at a young age, Edgar Allan Poe had real reason to believe the angels: it was the women he knew as ‘mother’—his aunt, Maria Clemm, his foster mother, Frances Allan, even his grandmother, Elizabeth Cairnes Poe—whose devotion made his life (both literal and literary) possible. As we continue this most poetical year of events and exhibits to commemorate the 200th birthday of Edgar Allan Poe’s wife and muse, Virginia Poe, in May we celebrate all thing Mother, spread the love, and recognize the other women in the Poe family.
On Mother’s Day, May 8th, we’ll PREVIEW our program MOTHER: Hidden Her-stories of the Women in the Poe Family, including a Revolutionary War Patriot and how a mother’s love changed literary history. Watch at 7PM, Sunday May 8th.
P.S. Would you like to express your devotion to a “mom” in your life? Leave a message for mom here and we might play it when our preview streams on Mother’s Day: https://www.speakpipe.com/VirginiaPoe
Spring is the maddest season as it’s the official beginning of planning for Poe Fest International: date has been set for the International Edgar Allan Poe Festival & Awards and “Death Weekend” is slated for October 8th & 9th, 2022. We begin to assemble our hale and light-hearted friends with the return of PAVERS FOR POE FEST Tour Ticket pre-sales! Poe Fest International is a FREE community festival, but additional tours and ticketed events abound. Support the Edgar Allan Poe House & Museum with an engraved paver in Poe Park, get first access to the official festival t-shirt and Bus Tours of Poe’s Baltimore! As ever, proceeds benefit The Edgar Allan Poe House & Museum in Baltimore.
Check out the new addition to this year’s festival poster as our program and festival events are inspired by the Virginia Poe Bicentennial, a most poetical year of events and exhibits to commemorate the 200th birthday of Edgar Allan Poe’s wife and muse.
We’re feeling LUCKY this month at Poe House: after two years, PINTS FOR POE returns! Join us at the Annabel Lee Tavern on St. Patrick’s Day for a special “Kiss Me, I WAS Irish” event. Hourly raffle begins at 6PM, and donations and portion of proceeds benefit The Edgar Allan Poe House & Museum in Baltimore. Raise a glass to support Poe House programs!
It’s not luck that we begin our Virginia Poe Bicentennial Discussion Series during Women’s History Month. Join us March 15th for a live recording of MUSE: the Life and Afterlife of Edgar Allan Poe’s Beloved CHild Bride. Register to attend and participate in live Q&A with presenters from Poe House, The Poe Cottage at Fordham, and Morgan State University. We hope to be in person at Westminster Hall next month, so stay tuned!
Whether you join in person, participate online, or even pick up gifts in our online shop, you support Poe House programs like The International Edgar Allan Poe Festival, the Virginia Poe Bicentennial, and The Saturday ‘Visiter’ Awards. Read our latest newsletter and welcome our 2022 slate of SVA judges, as well as guest-of-honor, bestselling author, Lynn Cullen.
Valentine’s Day falls on a Monday this month and thus the immutable laws of marketing dictate we must celebrate/endure a weekend of romantic bliss… or misery… likely both if you’re a Poe fan. Your favorite restaurants will be booked, so consider a Bus Tour of Edgar Allan Poe’s Baltimore for your beloved instead. And while you’re in the cemetery, leave a rose for Edgar and his wife, Virginia (she’s buried right next to him) as in 2022 we commemorate the Virginia Poe Bicentennial.
Those staying in V-day evening can enjoy our special Valentine’s program, In Her Own Words: A Valentine for Edgar Allan Poe, featuring Virginia’s poetic Valentine to her husband and Edgar’s fraught proposal of marriage. The program will stream on Facebook and YouTube at 7PM Eastern. Stay to the end to learn how you can participate in our next recording!
We at Poe House remain grateful that in a year of uncertainty (and year-two of pandemic) we have found surcease of sorrow together with a fair litany of programs and events. What is our mission if not to celebrate and find catharsis in art and the literary legacy that Poe House represents? We give thanks this and every year to the thousands of Poe House guests and festival attendees, in person and online: it is with your continued support that Poe Baltimore keeps Edgar’s chamber door open to visitors.
P.S. Next month’s newsletter is meant to tantalize with a look ahead to programs in 2022, including the return of PoeZella and Poe’s Death in Baltimore Bus Tours, the Saturday Visiter Awards call for entries, and the planned year-long celebration of the Virginia Poe Bicentennial.
The 2021 International Edgar Allan Poe Festival was a smashing success–and we mean it literally: this year’s crowd estimate of over two thousand people exceeded even pre-pandemic numbers, and this doesn’t include the thousands of viewers who tuned in to our virtual program on Facebook and YouTube Live from all over the Poe world. In a year of continuing uncertainty and trepidation, we were thrilled to see the return of so many. Winners of the 2021 Saturday ‘Visiter’ Awards were announced festival weekend and we look forward to sharing more of their work with you in the coming year.
A very big thank you to all attendees, viewers, sponsors, vendors, volunteers and staff for continuing our mission and helping us to commemorate the anniversary of Poe’s death in Baltimore. Poe Fest International will return in 2022!
The revelries haven’t ended. Three nominees for the first Young SVAs have been notified and the winner will be announced together with a streamed encore presentation of the Best of Poe Fest International on Facebook & YoutTube Live October 30. And our Poe Death Exhibit is going on tour! See the installation at the Laurel Museum Halloween weekend and through next month. Read the latest newsletter about these and other events here. An (un)happy Poe-tober to all!