Accession Number:

ADA525759

Title:

Seeds of a Soldier: The True Story of Edgar Allan Poe - The Sergeant Major

Descriptive Note:

Journal article

Corporate Author:

ARMY SPACE AND MISSILE DEFENSE COMMAND/ARMY FORCES STRATEGIC COMMAND HUNTSVILLE AL

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

2003-01-01

Pagination or Media Count:

4.0

Abstract:

Edgar Allan Poe wore U.S. Army sergeant major stripes. Using the name Edgar A. Perry, Poe enlisted in the U.S. Army on May 26, 1827. Poe climbed from private to regimental sergeant major of the 1st Artillery Regiment, promoted on Jan. 1, 1829. He served nearly two years of a five-year enlistment before the Army discharged Poe April 15, 1829, so that he could begin a yearlong effort to attend the Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. He began his studies at the Military Academy on July 1, 1830. The Academy dismissed him March 6, 1831, after a court martial for neglecting duties and disobeying orders. But is this failure to ultimately succeed at the Academy an accurate portrayal of Poes military performance His later notoriety as a writer makes him a revealing example of an early-day sergeant major and soldier. While many people may disregard Poes Army experience, letters from his officers he worked for and from Poe himself imply something very different. Even circumstances leading to his dismissal from the Academy indicate deep personal conflict with his foster father - circumstances which had led him to enlisting in the first place - more as the root of his problems than with discipline, academics or military life. In fact, there are indicators that Poes performance as an enlisted man contains similar traits to those expected of modern day NCOs and Soldiers.

Subject Categories:

  • Humanities and History
  • Military Forces and Organizations

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE