Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Tombstone Tuesday - David Poe Sr. - Edgar Allan Poe's Grandfather

Buried Westminster Burial Ground in Baltimore, Maryland, along with other family members including grandson Edgar Allan Poe.

In 1779 was commissioned as assistant deputy quartermaster general for the City of Baltimore. His military rank was major, but he was known as General Poe. He believed in the cause so much, he spent $40,000 to provide supplies for the Revolution. When General Lafayette visited the United States in 1824, he related how David Poe had sent $500 to help feed and clothe his troops. At the age of 71 he fought in the Battle of Baltimore during the War of 1812.

Original burial place for Edgar Allan Poe. Mrs. Maria Poe Clemm was his aunt and mother-in-law.

(click on image to enlarge for better viewing)

Here we find the Poe Family tree courtesy The Edgar Allan Poe Society of Baltimore. The site has many details concerning not only Poe's life and times, but interesting genealogical research. In particular I enjoyed reading a letter Edgar sent to cousin George Washington Poe sharing what is known of his heritage.

If you ever get the chance to visit Baltimore, make sure to place Westminster on your agenda.


  1. This is very interesting. I have been to Baltimore and never thought to visit a cemetery. Next time....

  2. Great post Deb, very interesting. I never knew that Poe had any connection to the military like that.

  3. This post was interesting, I only wish I had gone to the cemetery. One question, where is Edgar buried?

  4. Barbara:

    Edgar (along with his wife and mother-in-law) is still in Westminster, albeit in a different location and under a large monument. You can't miss it.

    (Side note: Baltimoreans don't like to talk about this, but there is a school of thought that when Poe's body was exhumed for reburial in 1875, they accidentally got the wrong coffin. According to this belief, the Poe Monument now houses the body of one Philip Mosher, Jr. A very Poe-like tale, no?)

  5. Fascinating Deb, and great photos of the tombstones!

  6. Just wondering if Edgar's tombstone reads "Nevermore . . ." :-)

  7. Susan,

    Here is the link at Find A Grave for Edgar Allan Poe


  8. Umm they should get the dates correct. He died in 1849.

  9. Heitman says his rank was Quartermaster. In fact the Quartermaster General of the entire Continental Army was a Major. This is how legends grow. A quarter master general (which he was not) is no more a general than a surgeon general or an attorney general is a real General.

  10. I guess the family forgot to put General on his tombstone or Major and modestly left it as Patriot.

    Would a theatrical family exaggerate? Tell me it isn't true.