The Associated Press has reported that the mystery visitor who has placed roses and cognac at the grave of Edgar Allan Poe each year on the writer’s birthday failed to show early Tuesday. This breaks a ritual that began more than 60 years ago.
“I’m confused, befuddled,” said Jeff Jerome, curator of the Poe House and Museum. “I don’t know what’s going on.”
The tradition began as early as 1949, according to newspaper accounts from the era. Since then, an unidentified person has left three roses and a half-bottle of cognac at Poe’s grave every January 19th. The grave is located in a church cemetery in downtown Baltimore.
Jerome said the Poe toaster has always arrived before 5:30 a.m. There was still a chance the visit could occur later in the day, but Jerome said he doubted the person would risk a public unveiling by performing the task in daylight, when other visitors could be there.