When Is the Best Time
The best time to visit is during the week. It’s quieter and you can talk to the guides in a more relaxed atmosphere.
Hours are limited, you’ll want to be mindful about making sure your schedule lines up with their times.
How Long Is the Tour?
The tour at Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site is self-guided and takes about one hour. It might take longer if you ask the guides for more detailed information about the site.
Is It Wheelchair Accessible?
Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site is not wheelchair accessible as there are stairs to climb in the building. There is no elevator.
Where Can You Park Your Car?
There are no dedicated parking areas at the site. You can park across the building or somewhere else on the street. It’s not busy and parking is usually available, especially if you visit mid-week.
Is It Free?
Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site is always free. You don’t have to pay an entrance fee.
Tips and Review
by Melissa Sallee
An old empty house – hardly even any furniture in it, just peeling paint and exposed brick…why go? Because it is very likely that this home inspired Poe’s macabre tale, “The Black Cat”. Poe consider the time he lived in Philly his most productive years in his brilliant, yet short, literary career. The worn, bowed stairs remind you he walked through these same halls and conjured up ideas that would become the dark stories that made him a central figure in Romanticism and American literature as a whole.
This historic site is located about a mile away from the main attractions such as the Liberty Bell that boasts the grand story of the forming of the United States. However, we are reminded to pause and consider the intimate stories of the innovators and unusual individuals that constantly pushed to expand our collective views. Poe did that for us, causing us to question what is real and confront what we are afraid of.
The Edgar Allan Poe National Historic Site is open Friday – Sunday, from 9am – 12pm and 1pm – 5pm. The site is closed from 12pm – 1pm. There is no fee to visit the site. You may wander through a self-guided tour or opt for a ranger-led tour. I encourage you to stop and sit for a while in the reading room, the only room there is a proper space to sit, then read or listen to Poe’s fictional essay, The Philosophy of Furniture. Recordings are available.
I will leave you with a Poe quote, “The boundaries which divide Life from Death are at best shadowy and vague. Who shall say where the one ends, and where the other begins?” Perhaps he will be in the reading room with you.