Visiting Edgar Allan Poe's cottage in the Bronx
Bronx Travel Blog› entry 1020 of 1090 › view all entries
Edgar Allan Poe is a rather famous American poet, writer, and critic. He was one of the first authors that lived completely from the art of writing. Unfortunately for Poe his rather dark works did not appeal too much to the American public, which made him a poor man. His works were actually more famous outside of the US.
Poe's life was not a happy story. He became an orphan at the age of three, dropped out of college and later dropped out of West Point military academy. In the meantime he had gambling debts and a drinking problem. And above that all, his beloved wife died of tuberculosis.
Boston born, Poe lived in Richmond Virginia, Baltimore Maryland, Philadelphia Pennsylvania, and in New York City. In Philadelphia I once visited one of the houses he used to live in. But I had never visited his New York house, which is actually in the "same street" where I park my car.
Poe lived in New York in his poor period, so the house we talk of is actually a small wooden cottage. The cottage is right at the side of the Grand Concourse and 194th street in Poe Park. This is not exactly the same place where the author used to live. The cottage was moved across the street in 1913 due to the widening of the Knightsbridge Road. Since then it has been preserved and even placed on the National Register of Historic Places, and is called the Edgar Allan Poe Cottage.
It was for his sick wife, who needed fresh air, that Poe rented the cottage, which, at that time, was located in the village of Fordham. A very rural part of what now is called The Bronx. So, strictly seen, at that time he did not live in New York City at all! The cottage is really basic, but still cozy. Its interior has been nicely restored and now serves as a small museum. Some items inside, like the mirror and the rocking chair, are said to be the original pieces of furniture once owned and used by the writer.
More pictures below.