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Baltimore Planning Big Edgar Allan Poe Celebration

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- "The Raven," "The Tell-Tale Heart," "The Fall of the House of Usher." Those are just a few of the many works by Edgar Allan Poe.

The author is buried here and his birthday is Monday.

Ron Matz reports Baltimore will celebrate Poe's life in a big way this weekend.

Behind these gates lies the master of mystery. This is where Edgar Allan Poe is buried.

"Poe's popularity is growing every year. It's unbelievable," said Jeff Jerome, curator emeritus of the Edgar Allan Poe House and Museum.

Before he died in Baltimore at the age of 40, Poe wrote dozens of poems and short stories. His birthday is Monday, and his popularity continues to grow.

"I have yet to come up with one clear cut answer on why Poe is so popular. Many people say it's his life that maybe they can relate to, how he struggled, how he persevered against all odds. People love his horror stories, they love his poetry. People love the whole package of Poe," Jerome said.

Sunday at Westminster Hall, actor John Astin will lead a tribute to the world renowned author.

"There will be a tribute to Poe Sunday at Westminster Hall with John Astin, who many people remember from playing Gomez on the Addams Family. He will be reading 'The Raven' and 'Annabel Lee.' He will be talking about Poe's life. He'll be talking about Poe's science fiction," said Jerome. "The event is sold out, we're expecting 350 people. It will be an hour of great entertainment."

That life brought Tina Helmstetter to the grave.

"I happened to be in Baltimore and I just wanted to stop by Edgar Allan Poe's grave because I knew it was his birthday this coming week," said Helmstetter.

"It's very macabre, it's very thought provoking being here. It's the unknown, just not knowing what he could have done, how much more he could have given us," she continued.

This is Poe's burial ground on West Fayette Street. He died in Baltimore in 1849. The cause of death remains a mystery.

"There are 22 different theories concerning his death. We will never know what happened to Poe. We will be talking about Poe's death forever," said Jerome.

Or, as Poe might have said, evermore.

The daughter of actor Vincent Price, Victoria Price, will also be in Baltimore for Sunday's tribute. She will also lay a wreath at the Poe grave Monday afternoon at 3 p.m.

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