Edgar Allan Poe Mother: Elizabeth Arnold Poe

Elizabeth Arnold Hopkins Poe (Born 1787 – Died December 8, 1811) was an English-born actress and the mother of Edgar Allan Poe. Below are photos of the Memorial building to Elizabeth Arnold Poe at the Poe Museum complex in Richmond, Virginia, and photos of the Elizabeth Poe memorial marker at the St. John's Episcopal Church in Richmond, Virginia.

She was named for her mother, Elizabeth Arnold, who was also an actress who brought herself and her daughter to America in 1796. Eliza's first husband, Charles Hopkins, died of yellow fever in 1805, leaving her a widow at the age of 18. She met David Poe in Norfolk, Virginia, while appearing in a theatre play there. They married in 1806, and their first child, William Henry Leonard Poe, was born in 1807. Edgar Poe was born January 19, 1809, in Boston, Massachusetts. A daughter named Rosalie was born in December 1810, several months after David Poe had abandoned his family, and apparently dying in Norfolk, Virginia, in 1811.

Signs of tuberculosis appeared in 1811 during a performance in Richmond, Virginia. Her health declined and her last on stage work was in October of 1811, and she died on a Sunday morning, on December 8, 1811.0 She was twenty-four years old.

Elizabeth's three children were split up after her death, with William Henry Leonard Poe going to live with his paternal grandparents in Baltimore, Maryland; Edgar Poe went to live with John and Frances Allan in Richmond, VA; and Rosalie Poe was adopted by William and Jane Scott Mackenzie in Richmond, Virginia.

Elizabeth Arnold Hopkins Poe

Edgar Allan Poe Links

Edgar Allan Poe Page

Michael Deas Poe Postal Service Stamp presentation image, 2009

Edmund Quinn Sculpture of Edgar Allan Poe at the Poe Museum in Richmond VA

Edgar Allan Poe Stamp issue 2009, featuring Michael Deas Poe portrait

The Edgar Allan Poe garden area at the Poe Museum, Richmond VA

Poe Museum complex in Richmond, VA

Elizabeth Arnold Poe, "Eliza" Poe, Edgar's mother, buried at St John's in Richmond VA

Artwork, Edgar Allan Poe drawing

Edgar Allan Poe at Charlottesville Virginia

Weems Photography