Saturday, September 06, 2008

Over our dead bodies

According to an article in the New York Times, a Philadelphia Poe scholar wants to dig up the remains of Edgar Allen Poe from the city where he died (Baltimore) and move them to the City of Brotherly Love.

Edward Pettit argues that Poe wrote much of his best work in Philadelphia and "that city’s rampant crime and violence in the mid-19th century framed Poe’s sinister outlook and inspired his creation of the detective fiction genre."

“So, Philadelphians, let’s hop in our cars, drive down I-95 and appropriate a body from a certain Baltimore cemetery,” Mr. Pettit wrote in an article for the Philadelphia City Paper in October. “I’ll bring the shovel.”

Not so fast, mister. We've got the Poe Toaster, a mysterious figure who visits the author's grave every year on his birthday and leaves three red roses and a half-bottle of cognac. We even named our football team in honor of his most famous work, "The Raven." Poe is ours--or rather, we are his.

“Philadelphia can keep its broken bell and its cheese steak, but Poe’s body isn’t going anywhere,” said Jeff Jerome, the curator of the Poe House in Baltimore. He'll be debating Pettit on January 13 at the Philadelphia Free Library.

Mr. Jerome added that everything would be settled at the debate, and in exactly the way that Poe would have wanted.

“I will argue the other guy down with grace and facts,” Mr. Jerome said. “Then I will walk over to him like a gentleman and punch him square in the nose.”


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7 Comments:

Guess we in The City of Brotherly Love want to extend that even more to Poe. Having one of his houses here isn't enough. I was with Baltimore until the mention fo the "broken bell."


Cecilia

Posted by: Anonymous Anonymous at 9/06/2008 11:01 AM

*laughs* “I will argue the other guy down with grace and facts,” Mr. Jerome said. “Then I will walk over to him like a gentleman and punch him square in the nose.”

I love it. :)

-Catie

Posted by: Blogger Catie at 9/06/2008 2:40 PM

WTF?! Leave his body where it is. Sometimes I think we just have nothing better to meddle with the dead. Leave Poe lay...

Posted by: Blogger Ruby (Mouth) at 9/06/2008 10:35 PM

Could you say they were "Raven" lunatics?

Posted by: Blogger Alex Bledsoe at 9/07/2008 7:56 AM

LOL. I do love me some Poe. :-)

Posted by: Blogger Cynthia Eden at 9/08/2008 11:47 AM

Then I will walk over to him like a gentleman and punch him square in the nose.

Whatever happened to the good old days when such quarrels were settled via immurement? Kids today, I tell ya.

Posted by: Blogger Dave S. at 9/08/2008 4:38 PM

Being born and raised in Baltimore I must say nay. Leave Poe where he belongs! :D

Posted by: Blogger Kelly Gay at 9/09/2008 1:36 PM

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