Monday, January 23, 2012

The Poe Toaster

We visited Poe's grave on a trip to Baltimore in April, 2005. I did not remember there being roses on his
tombstone until I pulled up this picture again. We didn't put them there. Alas, I am not the Poe Toaster.

Last Thursday, January 19th, was Edgar Allan Poe's birthday. I was not in the literary 'know' and  did not realize that someone who is commonly referred to as the "Poe Toaster" left Poe a birthday gift of three roses and a half bottle of cognac every year.

It is reported that this tradition began in the 1960's and has been carried on by more than one person. The last occurrence of Poe Toaster visits was in 2009, which would have been Poe's 200th birthday. Though Poe fans have staked out the downtown Baltimore cemetery where Poe is buried, the identity of the Poe Toaster remained unknown.

Poe Museum officials believe the era of the Poe Toaster is now over. Poe's mysterious visitor will remain as mysterious as his death. I can only tell you this: it wasn't me.


  1. Wow! The mysterious Poe Toaster is still missing? Now, that really does make everyone wonder who the heck it was, right? And why stop at Poe's 200th Birthday?

    This is a real mystery.... :)

  2. That's an intriguing tale. At the University of Virginia, Poe's old dorm room has been turned into a mini-museum. There is a sheet of glass where a door would be and you can look right in and see how it looked back then. It's there, right in the midst of a thriving college campus. That's intriguing too!

  3. I don't think there's much about Poe that isn't intriguing. He's one of my favorite writers.

  4. I love 'The Raven' ... but then, who doesn't? :)

  5. I heard about the Poe Toaster!! Wouldn't it be great to know the identity of this person!