Knowing Poe: The Literature, Life and Times of Edgar Allan Poe... In Baltimore and Beyond



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Poe's Baltimore Letters
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Random Raven

A letter Poe wrote to John Allan asking for money.

[Text: Edgar Allan Poe to John Allan - November 18, 1831.]

Balt: Novr 18. 1831,

My Dear Pa,

I am in the greatest distress and have no other friend on earth to apply to except yourself if you refuse to help me I know not what I shall do. I was arrested eleven days ago for a debt which I never expected to have to pay, and which was incurred as much on Hy's [Henry's] account [as] on my own about two years ago.

I would rather have done any thing on earth than apply to you again after your late kindness — but indeed I have no other resource, and I am in bad health, and unable to undergo as much hardships as formerly or I never would have asked you to give me another cent.

If you will only send me this one time $80, by Wednesday next, I will never forget your kindness & generosity. — if you refuse God only knows what I shall do, & all my hopes & prospects are ruined forever —

Yours affectionatel[y]

E A Poe

I have made every exertion but in vain.

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