Allan Poe was born in Boston, Massachusetts, to parents who were
itinerant actors. His father David Poe Jr. died probably in 1810 and his
mother Elizabeth Hopkins Poe in 1811, leaving three children, of whom
William died young and Rosalie ultimately lost her mind. Edgar was taken
into the home of a Richmond merchant John Allan and brought up partly in
England (1815-20), where he attended Manor School at Stoke Newington.
Never legally adopted, Poe took Allan's name for his middle name. Poe
suffered from bouts of depression and madness, and he attempted suicide
in 1848. In September the following year he disappeared for three days
after a drink at a birthday party and on his way to visit his new
fiancée in Richmond. He turned up in delirious condition in Baltimore
gutter and died on October 7, 1849.