Edgar Allan Poe (American, 1809-1849) 

One of the most famous American authors of the nineteenth century, Poe’s haunting poetry and short stories gained him international prominence during his lifetime. Born to professional actors in Boston, at three-years-old, Poe was unofficially adopted by a wealthy exporter in Richmond, Virginia following their untimely death. After attending the University of Virginia for a short while, he moved to Boston where he enlisted in the Army. During this time, he published many poems and short story collections without much attention. 
Poe’s most famous works—such as The Raven, The Tell-Tale Heart, and The Black Cat—were published when Poe was working as editor for magazines such as the Southern Literary Messenger. Beyond being a master at psychological horror, he developed the genres of detective novels and science fiction. His tumultuous life, marriage to his 13-year-old cousin, disturbing narratives, and mysterious death have kept new audiences continually intrigued by the author.