Edgar Allen Poe was a master of his craft, gifted with the talent of introducing each reader to his or her own subconscious fears. As the first writer to initiate horror, and mystery into literature and poetry, he is blessed- or perhaps cursed- with an imagination that set higher standards in the field of writing. However morbid or dark it may be, Poe's writing continues to have an impact on the world of prose. A look into Poe's childhood might shed some light on where his fascination with stems from.
Edgar Allan Poe was born in 1809 in Boston, Massachusetts to drifting actor parents. Denying his parental responsibilities, his father abandoned his wife and three children, leaving her to support the family as best she could. She traveled through various cities acting in stage engagements as she could get them, but the struggle eventually took a toll on her health.
Towards the end of 1811 while in Richmond, Virginia, she became ill and died. Her children were promptly farmed into homes, Edgar being placed into the residence of a well-off, yet unsupportive merchant named John Allan. Allan was emotionally detached from Poe, refusing to even legally adopt the boy. This move would begin a chain of events, eventually triggering a drinking problem that would induce the majority of Poe's psychological troubles later in life. He was raised in an affluent home, but lacked the emotional support needed to build fortitude and confidence in himself.
In Poe's youth he didn't pursue a life toward writing, probably due to his assumption that he would eventually inherit his foster father's estate. He would attend the finest boarding schools in training to be a proper gentleman, but when it came time to go to the University of Virginia in 1826, his foster father gave...