September 24, 2008

Edgar Allan Poe kept residences up and down the east coast over the course of his short life. New York City, Richmond, Boston and Philadelphia all have claims to his legend, but he died–and was buried–in Baltimore. What’s more, his grave site and the toast of roses and cognac left there every year on his birthday have become integral to our city’s lore.

Edward Pettit, a Poe scholar from Philadelphia, points to major Poe works like The Fall of the House of Usher, The Masque of the Red Death, and The Tell-Tale Heart, all written during his residence in Philadelphia–as evidence of where his legacy–and maybe even his body–really belongs. Jeff Jerome, curator of the Poe House at 203 Amity Street, argues that Poe’s connection to Baltimore goes a lot deeper than six feet–Poe wrote his first horror story on Baltimore soil a long time before being buried in it. For the first half of our show, they debated what city is the true city of Poe’s legacy, and if Poe’s current resting place should stay his final one.

Then we had a follow-up on yesterday’s show about the Wall Street bailout plan, featuring an interview with Mark Sumner, also known as Devilstower, a contributing editor to the Daily Kos. You can read the article that inspired the conversation here.