“With me poetry has not been a purpose, but a passion.” — Edgar Allan Poe

MOURNING: The strange after-lives of Virginia & Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe famously proclaimed "the death of a beautiful woman" the most poetical subject in the world. The prolonged suffering of his beautiful, dying wife, Virginia Poe, almost certainly inspired this belief. Virginia Poe remains one of the most enigmatic and controversial figures in the famed author's history. Join us for a series of live readings, themed discussion, and Q&A about the famed muse, poetess, child bride and daughter of Baltimore.

Each session in the Virginia Poe Bicentennial Discussion Series will include history, presentations, reading and discussion around a selected theme. **This event is a hybrid event: it will be recorded live at Westminster Hall & Burying Ground in Baltimore MD, also presented via Zoom webconference. Attendees register to attend in-person or participate online. Edited portions will stream later on Facebook and YouTube.**

In July:

MOURNING, The strange after-lives of Edgar & Virginia Poe, plus rites and traditional feminine in 19th century America (hybrid event)

Act I

Mourning Custom, Jewels and Costume in the time of Virginia Poe
Hayden Peters of ArtofMourning.com presenting. The cost of fashionable mourning was almost as high as the loss of a loved one and the requirements of mourning costume and jewels led families into debt. Learn how these customs became part of 19th century family behavior and how influential women led to its decline.
Act II
Fascinating women buried in Baltimore’s 19th century cemeteries
A look at the lives of women buried in Westminster Burying Ground as well as in Green Mount, Loudon Park, Mt. Auburn, and New Cathedral cemeteries, and how these individuals shaped the city today. Presented by Kathi Santora from the "Dying To Tell Their Stories" Blog.
Act III
"What's In the Box?"
The Poes did not rest easy in death. We share the complicated afterlives of Edgar & Virginia. Discussion with Enrica Jang, Executive Director of the Edgar Allan Poe House & Museum, Baltimore.
This is the seventh in a series of monthly programs for the Virginia Poe Bicentennial; follow us on social media to be alerted when events are happening! The Virginia Poe Bicentennial is presented by Poe Baltimore, Westminster Hall & Burying Ground, Maryland Women's Heritage Center, the Poe Cottage at Fordham (Bronx, NYC,) with generous help and participation from Poe Studies Association, The Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore and The Poe Museum (Richmond.)