Friday, July 27, 2012

Nineteenth Century American Authors

The list of authors whose works were reprinted in the pages of Weird Tales reads in part like a who's who of nineteenth century American literature. I have already covered about half of those authors. I hope to cover the other half over the next few weeks. In chronological order of their births, they are:
  • Washington Irving (1783-1859)
  • Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864)
  • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)
  • Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)
  • Walt Whitman (1819-1892)
  • Fitz-James O'Brien (1828-1862)
  • Edmund Clarence Stedman (1833-1908)
  • Frank Stockton (1834-1902)
  • Mark Twain (1835-1910)
  • Sidney Lanier (1842-1881)
  • Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914)
  • F. Marion Crawford (1854-1909)
  • O. Henry (1862-1910)
  • Robert W. Chambers (1865-1933)
  • Frank Norris (1870-1902)
There are of course well known names absent from the list: essayists, philosophers, Transcendentalists, Abolitionists, political figures, many of the poets. More conspicuously absent are these indispensable authors:

James Fenimore Cooper (1789-1851)-Most of Cooper's works were historical or adventure novels, but I found a reference to a book called The Monikins (1835), about "[a]n Antarctic land of educated monkeys that 'ape' English and American social and political folly." That description makes The Monikins sound more like a satire than a work of fantasy, but it's a book worth mentioning anyway.

Antarctica was discovered in 1820. Cooper's book may or may not have been the first novel of the frozen continent, but it preceded Edgar Allan Poe's Narrative of Arthur G. Pym of Nantucket (1838) by three years. More than half a century later, Jules Verne published a sequel to Poe's novel, Antarctic Mystery: The Sphinx of the Ice Fields (1897). H.P. Lovecraft also referred to Arthur G. Pym in his own Antarctic novel, At the Mountains of Madness (1931), which was rejected by Weird Tales. You can find out more on the author at the website of the James Fenimore Cooper Society, here, and on polar fiction by clicking this link.

Herman Melville (1819-1891)-Herman Melville, friend of Nathaniel Hawthorne, seems not to have written in the genre of weird fiction, but if you have ever read "Bartleby the Scrivener," you probably said to yourself, "Boy, that's weird." There are fantastic elements in other works by Melville. H. Bruce Franklin included the story "The Bell-Tower" in his anthology Future Perfect (1995), calling it "Melville's only complete science fiction." Otherwise Melville wrote mostly about the sea, including in his magnum opus, Moby-Dick, or The Whale (1851). Although Moby-Dick has been adapted many times, the most well known adaptation is the movie version from 1956 starring Gregory Peck and with a screenplay co-written by Ray Bradbury.

Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)-Of the authors on this list, Emily Dickinson is most aggrieved by not having had her work reprinted in Weird Tales. Could her poems have been too much even for Farnsworth Wright's tastes? Too subtle? Too sophisticated? Too morbid? Too obscure? Or was he simply unable to secure rights to reprint them? And shall I correct the oversight?

Bret Harte (1836-1902)-Bret Harte wrote not Westerns but of the West. Harte also wrote a parody of the Sherlock Holmes stories featuring a detective named Hemlock Jones. And, he may have been connected in the most roundabout way with H.P. Lovecraft through his work for a New Englander named Whipple.  

Kate Chopin (1851-1904)-I'm not familiar with Kate Chopin's stories. You may not find any work of fantasy or weird fiction there. All I can say is that she was influenced by Guy de Maupassant, the French teller of tales, some weird, some not. 

Charlotte Perkins Gilman (1860-1935)-Of all the authors on this list, only Charlotte Perkins Gilman lived into the Weird Tales era. A feminist and social reformer, she wrote scores of short stories, novels, essays, poems, and lectures. Her most famous work is "The Yellow Wallpaper" (1892), a story of madness and horror that would have been suitable for the Weird Tales crowd. Charlotte also wrote the Utopian novel Herland (1915), sort of a combination of Looking Backward and King Solomon's Mines.

Stephen Crane (1871-1900)-In his brief life, Stephen Crane authored a number of American classics, including The Red Badge of Courage (1895). He also wrote terse, enigmatic, naturalistic--some would say harsh--verse such as this poem from 1895:

A man feared that he might find an assassin;
Another that he might find a victim.
One was more wise than the other.

A few of those poems would have fit in nicely in the pages of Weird Tales.

The cover of one of many editions of The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. Artists sense that yellow is the color of madness, or use the color yellow to express madness. See the work of Vincent van Gogh, such as . . . 
"The Night Cafe" from 1888.

Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Edmund Clarence Stedman (1833-1908)

Poet, Critic, Editor, Essayist, Journalist, Inventor, Banker
Born October 8, 1833, Hartford, Connecticut
Died January 18, 1908, New York, New York

As I read about these American writers from the nineteenth century, I find each more interesting than the last. I can't do justice to their lives and accomplishments in this blog (or for that matter, anyone's life or accomplishments), but I will write what I can. Edmund Clarence Stedman, "the banker-poet," was born in Hartford, Connecticut, to Colonel Edmund Burke Stedman and Elizabeth Clementine Dodge Stedman, "a woman of poetic gifts and high culture" to whom her son later dedicated a book of verse. Stedman matriculated at Yale University at age sixteen but was suspended for "his disinclination to brook restraint," a euphemism whose meaning may now be lost. Over the years, Stedman worked as a journalist, critic, and editor. During the Civil War he was a war correspondent in Virginia. Before the war was over, he returned to New York and a career in finance, serving on the New York Stock Exchange from 1865 to 1900.

Stedman was an indispensable figure in the literature of nineteenth century America. In addition to authoring several volumes of his own poetry, he assembled large collections of verse and prose by fellow authors, including a ten-volume collection of the works of Edgar Allan Poe. Stunned and unfit to speak upon Stedman's death in 1908, Mark Twain wrote:
Mr. Stedman was for a lifetime like an elder brother to me, and it is difficult to respond to your [the New York Times'] request for a word about him to-night [sic]. As poet, critic, leader in all matters pertaining to the interests and honor of literature, and as a helpful, loyal and generous friend of men of letters, his position was unique. He will be greatly missed and widely mourned.
I would like to offer another quote on an interesting topic. This one is from Wikipedia:
In [February] 1879, [Stedman] proposed a rigid airship inspired by the anatomy of a fish, with a framework of steel, brass, or copper tubing and a tractor propeller mounted on the craft's bow, later changed to an engine with two propellers suspended beneath the framework. The airship never was built, but its design foreshadowed that of the dirigibles of the early decades of the 20th century.
Stedman was not the originator or inventor of the dirigible, but in 1879, the craft was in development in different places, mostly in Europe. Just seventeen years later, however, sightings of dirigibles or "airships" set off the first UFO flap in the United States. The year was 1896, arguably the birth year of popular culture in America.

Note: The quotes are from Edmund Clarence Stedman's obituary in the New York Times, January 19, 1908.

Edmund Clarence Stedman's Poem in Weird Tales
"Salem" (July 1926)

I had a hard time finding an image related to Edmund Clarence Stedman. Then I came upon this one and I couldn't have asked for anything better or more appropriate. It's the headpiece of "Witchcraft," a feature written by Stedman and published in Harper's New Monthly Magazine in December 1884. The artist was Howard Pyle, the father of American illustration. I am indebted to blogger Ian Schoenherr, son of science fiction illustrator John Schoenherr, for the image. Mr. Schoenherr writes about his father and about Howard Pyle on separate blogs. Click them for links. By the way, Howard Pyle died in Italy and his body was placed in a cemetery mausoleum south of Firenze (Florence). Pyle's resting place is unremarkable. I would venture to say few have seen it, and the staff of the cemetery probably doesn't know who he was--undeserved obscurity for one of our great illustrators. 
Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Walt Whitman (1819-1892)

Poet, Essayist, Journalist, Printer, Teacher, Nurse
Born May 31, 1819, West Hills, Town of Huntington, Long Island, New York
Died March 26, 1892, Camden, New Jersey

I'll make this posting brief inasmuch as the facts of Walt Whitman's life are well known and easily accessible in any number of books and on any number of websites. He was born in 1819 on Long Island and spent most of his life in New York and New Jersey, mostly in the field of journalism but also as a writer of verse, especially after 1855 when he first published Leaves of Grass. Whitman was a new kind of poet in America, a Bohemian figure who wrote of himself and of his bustling, democratic, industrious nation.

Whitman also wrote of life and of death. Weird Tales preferred the latter subject and reprinted two of his poems, "Whispers of Heavenly Death" (Nov. 1925) and "Death Carol" (Mar. 1926). More importantly for the development of the weird tale, Walt Whitman appears to have been a model for the character of Bram Stoker's Dracula. I find that to be so odd as to be almost inconceivable, yet the case is made. Stoker knew Whitman personally, visiting with him in his New Jersey home three times between 1884 and 1887 and expressing a great admiration for and debt to Walt Whitman. Stoker began writing Dracula in 1890, Whitman passed away in 1892, and the book was published in 1897. You can read more about the connection in "Whitman's Influence on Stoker's Dracula" by Dennis R. Perry in the Walt Whitman Quarterly Review (Dec. 1986) and in other sources.

Walt Whitman's Poems in Weird Tales
"Whispers of Heavenly Death" (Nov. 1925)
"Death Carol" (Mar. 1926)

The poet Walt Whitman. . . a model for Dracula?
A portrait of Dracula by the Spanish artist Enric Sio (1942-1998) from The Dracula Scrapbook by Peter Haining (1976). Mr. Haining called this "perhaps the most accurate likeness of the Dracula Stoker envisaged." The artist Sio may have created his drawing without knowing that Whitman was a model for Count Dracula, yet he arrived at this image, which bears a resemblance to the American poet.
Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Weird Tales on Film

Weird Tales by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Nathaniel Hawthorne died a century and a half ago, yet the works of his imagination live on, not only in print but also on film and video. The magazine Weird Tales reprinted eight of Hawthorne's stories. At least four of those stories have also been adapted to film. One was made into an animated movie. Surprisingly, the story "Feathertop" (Weird Tales, Apr. 1938) has been one of the most filmed, with versions from 1912, 1916, 1923, 1955, 1961, 1972, and 2000. The first three were theatrical releases, the second three were adaptations for television, and the last one was an animated feature which went straight to video. "Young Goodman Brown" (Weird Tales, May 1927) has also received several screen treatments, in 1959, 1972, and 1993, as has "Rappaccini's Daughter" (Weird Tales, May 1928), in 1951, 1954, 1963, and 1972. Finally, "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment" (Weird Tales, Aug. 1925) was adapted to television in 1950 and to the silver screen in 1963.

In 1963, MGM released an anthology of Hawthorne's tales in Twice-Told Tales, starring Vincent Price. Also in the cast were Sebastian Cabot and Beverly Garland. Twice-Told Tales featured three sequences, "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment," "Rappaccini's Daughter," and "The House of the Seven Gables." Only "Dr. Heidegger's Experiment" originally appeared in Hawthorne's book Twice-Told Tales. "Rappaccini's Daughter" was first published in Mosses from an Old Manse, while The House of the Seven Gables was a book in itself. Vincent Price was the star of all three sequences.

The anthology format was popular at the time, especially in the genres of fantasy and horror. Roger Corman had kicked things off in 1962 by combining four stories by Edgar Allan Poe into three sequences for his Tales of Terror. Vincent Price also starred in that film. Dr. Terror's House of Horrors (1965), The Illustrated Man (1969), the pilot movie for Rod Serling's Night Gallery (1969), The House That Dripped Blood (1970), and the unforgettable Trilogy of Terror (1975) continued the trend. One possible source of the anthology film was of course the fiction magazine, specifically, the pulp fiction magazine. You might say that the horror anthology movie is simply Weird Tales on film.

Nathaniel Hawthorne's stories from the nineteenth century were adapted to film in the twentieth.
The adaptations continued when Twice-Told Tales the movie was adapted to a comic book.
Hawthorne's "Feathertop" was also adapted to film, this time as the animated movie The Scarecrow, from 2000. According to the Internet Movie Database, this is the most recent movie adaptation of a story by Nathaniel Hawthorne.

Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864)

Author, Editor, Government Worker
Born July 4, 1804, Salem, Massachusetts
Died May 19, 1864, Plymouth, New Hampshire

If you played the Game of Authors when you were a child, you will remember Nathaniel Hawthorne's face and the titles of his works. Even if you were unfamiliar with the books themselves, their names evoked images of early America: Fanshawe (1828), Twice-Told Tales (1837), Mosses from an Old Manse (1846), The Scarlet Letter (1850), The House of the Seven Gables (1851), The Blithedale Romance (1852), A Wonder-Book for Girls and Boys (1852), Tanglewood Tales (1853), The Marble Faun (1860). The author of these works was born on his nation's twenty-eighth birthday, July 4, 1804, in Salem, Massachusetts, and was descended from a judge at the Salem witchcraft trials. It should come as no surprise that sin, guilt, punishment, and Puritan severity were perennial themes in Hawthorne's stories and novels. Like William Faulkner after him (who was similarly occupied in his work), Hawthorne added a letter to his surname, changing it from Hathorne to Hawthorne.

Hawthorne was friends with or acquainted with many of the most well known figures in the New England of his time, including Franklin Pierce, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Ellery Channing, Edwin Percy Whipple, Herman Melville, and the publishers Ticknor and Fields. Hawthorne's wife was the artist, illustrator, and Transcendentalist Sophia Peabody (1809-1871). I would not be surprised to learn that Hawthorne was connected by only a few degrees of separation with another New Englander, H.P. Lovecraft (1890-1937).

Weird Tales reprinted eight stories by Nathaniel Hawthorne, all prior to 1940. I'm beginning to see a pattern in the printing history of "The Unique Magazine." It seems that Farnsworth Wright, editor between 1924 and 1940, sought out works by well known authors of the past, either to lend an air of respectability to his magazine or because those works were in the public domain. In any case, the reprints seemed to have come to an end under Dorothy McIlwraith after 1940.

I'll close with a double quote from Wikipedia:
Hawthorne defined a romance as being radically different from a novel by not being concerned with the possible or probable course of ordinary experience. In the preface to The House of the Seven Gables, Hawthorne describes his romance-writing as using "atmospherical medium as to bring out or mellow the lights and deepen and enrich the shadows of the picture."
That sounds like one possible definition of the weird tale.

Nathaniel Hawthorne's Stories in Weird Tales
"Dr. Heidegger's Experiment" (Aug. 1925)
"The Birthmark" (July 1926)
"Young Goodman Brown" (May 1927)
"Rappaccini's Daughter" (May 1928)
"The White Old Maid" (July 1929)
"Ethan Brand" (Jan. 1938)
"Feathertop" (Apr. 1938)
"The Gray Champion" (June 1938)

Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)

Poet, Author, Translator, and Teacher
Born February 27, 1807, Portland, Maine (then part of the state of Massachusetts)
Died March 24, 1882, Cambridge, Massachusetts

In his lifetime, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was one of the most beloved of American poets. He was the author of some of the most well known and widely read poems of his century, including "The Children's Hour," "The Courtship of Miles Standish," "Evangeline," "Excelsior" (from which Stan Lee seems to have taken his sign-off in Marvel Comics), "I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day," "Paul Revere's Ride," "The Song of Hiawatha," "Tales of a Wayside Inn," "The Village Blacksmith," and "The Wreck of the Hesperus." Virgil Finlay adapted Longfellow's poem "The Skeleton in Armour" to his Weird Tales poetry series in June 1938. The subject of the poem is a skeleton, thought to be that of an American Indian, discovered in Fall River, Massachusetts, in 1832. Others believe the skeleton to be just one piece of evidence of pre-Colmbian visitations by Europeans to the Americas. Wikipedia lists a number of other structures and artifacts of questionable or mysterious origins in this category. Among them: America's Stonehenge, also called Mystery Hill, located in Salem, New Hampshire, and believed by some to have been an inspiration for H. P. Lovecraft in his story "The Dunwich Horror" (Weird Tales, April 1929). Another possible connection between Longfellow and Weird Tales: fantasy author Evangeline Walton, born during the centennial year of the poet's birth into a well educated and scholarly family, may very well have been named after Longfellow's poem "Evangeline."

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's Poem in Weird Tales
"The Skeleton in Armour" (June 1938, part of Virgil Finlay's poetry series)

Two U.S. postage stamps honoring Longfellow.
 Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Washington Irving (1783-1859)

Author, Essayist, Biographer, Editor, Artist, Diplomat
Born April 3, 1783, New York, New York
Died November 28, 1859, Sunnyside, Tarrytown, New York

Washington Irving enjoyed a long and varied career full of travel, literary success, wide friendship, and celebrity. He is considered the first American man of letters and one of the first (if not indeed the first) American writer to make his living solely with his pen. Despite being a biographer of George Washington (for whom he was named), Christopher Columbus, and Oliver Goldsmith and despite serving with the American legation in London and other diplomatic posts, Irving is best known today as the author of two stories, "Rip Van Winkle" and "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow." If you cast the net of weird fiction widely enough, you'll catch both tales. The latter of the two even found its way into the twentieth century magazine Weird Tales.

You'll find Irving's biography in any number of places, on the Internet or at the library. Instead of the broad facts on his life, I'll include here some trivia:
  • Born in the last year of the Revolutionary War (Wikipedia erroneously claims 1783 as the last year of the American Revolution), Washington Irving was named for George Washington, whom he met at age six and about whom he wrote a monumental five-volume biography.
  • Irving was active even into his seventies. He died in his sleep at age seventy-six in November 1859, a month after John Brown's raid on Harper's Ferry. With that, Irving can be said to have lived his entire life bracketed by the two great wars of American revolution.
  • Washington Irving is credited with coining the phrase "the almighty dollar"; with popularizing the name "Gotham" for his native New York City, thus providing Batman with a name for his own city; and with asserting that Europeans in the time of Columbus believed that the world is flat.
  • In using the pseudonym "Dietrich Knickerbocker," Irving lent his name to the NBA basketball team the New York Knickerbockers or Knicks.
  • Irving is also responsible for an early image of Santa Claus as a man carried aloft in a flying wagon. Charles Dickens (another teller of weird tales) was indebted to Irving and his version of Christmas in Dickens' Christmas Carol. (You might say that the debt was passed through the generations to include the author Seabury Quinn and his 1938 Weird Tales story "Roads.")
  • Irvington, established in 1870 and now a neighborhood in east Indianapolis, was named for Irving as well. Weird Tales author Catherine L. Moore grew up in Irvington before moving farther west towards downtown Indianapolis.
  • Irving wrote four stories that appeared in Weird Tales magazine. "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" is the most famous of these and received the Disney treatment in 1949. Less well known is that "The Legend of the Moor's Legacy" has also appeared in an animated version. (I just found out about it ten minutes ago.) It's in Russian and was made in 1959. You can watch it on a website called Daily Motion, here.

Washington Irving's Stories in Weird Tales
"The Lady of the Velvet Collar" (Feb. 1927; reprinted in Magazine of Horror, Apr. 1965; originally entitled "The Adventure of the German Student")
"The Legend of the Moor's Legacy" (Mar. 1928)
"The Specter Bridegroom" (June 1928)
"The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" (Nov. 1928)

The Headless Horseman has become an icon of American culture. He appeared in fine art as early as 1858 (the year before the author's death) in this painting, "The Headless Horseman Pursuing Ichabod Crane," by John Quidor.
He has also appeared on innumerable books covers . . . 
Record covers . . .
And even on postage stamps. 
Washington Irving's work has been translated into other languages, as in this Italian edition.
His characters have been drawn by artists as varied as David Levine (1963) . . .
And Frank Frazetta (1995).
Washington Irving's fiction was even adapted to an animated short subject in the Soviet Union. Here's the video cover for The Legend of the Moor's Legacy, originally from 1959.

Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley

Friday, July 13, 2012

Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)

Author, Poet, Essayist, Critic, Editor
Born January 19, 1809, Boston, Massachusetts
Died October 7, 1849, Baltimore, Maryland

If we tell a story of an author who wrote tales of mystery, crime, horror, and science fiction for popular magazines; a man who--wandering from city to city--struggled to find work and to win recognition (and remuneration) for his writing; an orphan and an alcoholic who was disowned by his family and endured other losses and tragedies, finally to die in poverty, you might guess that he was a pulp fiction writer of the 1920s and '30s. Instead, you would be reading something of the life of Edgar Allan Poe.

The facts of Poe's life are well known and can be found in any number of sources. He was born on January 19, 1809, in Boston, child and orphan of two actors. Raised by a wealthy Southerner (from whom he took the name Allan), Poe was educated in Great Britain and in the South. Although he attended the University of Virginia and the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, he never completed his degree. Instead, Poe served successfully as an enlisted man in the U.S. Army and worked as a writer, editor, and critic for a number of magazines and newspapers, including the Southern Literary Messenger, Burton's Gentleman's Magazine, and Graham's Magazine. Poe married his thirteen-year-old cousin, Virginia Clemm, but died childless. His legacy was instead his very influential oeuvre of fiction and verse.

Edgar Allan Poe was among the first American authors to attempt to support themselves solely by their writing. His first book, Tamerlane and Other Poems, was published in 1827 when its author was still in his teens. It came and went without notice. "MS. Found in a Bottle," from 1833, won him a prize from a Baltimore newspaper and a position as assistant editor at the Southern Literary Messenger in Richmond, Virginia. From there, Poe's career was more assured and stable, though personal problems and the death of his wife took their toll. Poe died mysteriously in Baltimore on October 7, 1849. In the centennial year of Poe's death, the mysterious "Poe Toaster" began his annual visit to the author's grave. The ritual ended with the bicentennial of Poe's birth.

Edgar Allan Poe is one of the most well known and influential American authors of the nineteenth century. He is credited with having created the genre of detective fiction and as one of the originators of the genre of science fiction. As such, his work was a forerunner to two of the most popular categories of pulp fiction. (If Poe's work led to twentieth century detective fiction and science fiction, it must also have led to the two most popular types of comic book superheroes, the detective hero--e.g., Batman--and the science fictional hero--e.g., Superman. Only the mythological hero, the magical hero, and the supernatural hero would have predated Poe and his time.) Jacob Clark Henneberger, founder of Weird Tales magazine, was a particular admirer of Edgar Allan Poe. In the magazine to which he was so devoted, Henneberger attempted to revive the effect and spirit of Poe's tales of mystery and terror. In the early essay, "Why Weird Tales?" (Weird Tales, May/June/July 1924), Henneberger's editorial staff recognized their debt and obligation to Poe, writing, "Had Edgar Allan Poe produced that masterpiece [The Murders in the Rue Morgue] in this generation he would have searched in vain for a publisher before the advent of this magazine." The closing of the essay begins with these prescient words:
[Poe's] works are immortal and stand today as the most widely read of any American author. The publishers of Weird Tales hope they will be instrumental in discovering or uncovering some American writer who will leave to posterity what Poe and Hawthorne have bequeathed to the present generation.
Perhaps unknowingly, the magazine had already begun publishing the work of that writer and a worthy successor to Edgar Allan Poe, for in its October 1923 issue, Weird Tales had printed the first of many tales by another New Englander who struggled to make his living as a writer, a man who endured his own personal problems, yet triumphed in his art, only to die tragically young like Edgar Allan Poe. That writer and Poe's successor was Howard Phillips Lovecraft.

Works by Edgar Allan Poe, published in his lifetime
Tamerlane and Other Poems (as by "a Bostonian") (1827)
Al Aaraaf, Tamerlane and Minor Poems (1829)
Poems (1831)
Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque (1839)
The Prose Romances of Edgar A. Poe (1843)
Tales (1845)
The Raven and Other Poems (1845)

Edgar Allan Poe's Stories and Poems in Weird Tales
"The Murders in the Rue Morgue" (June 1923)
"The Pit and the Pendulum" (Oct. 1923)
"The Tell-Tale Heart" (Nov. 1923)
"The Black Cat" (Jan. 1924)
"Never Bet the Devil Your Head" (Mar. 1924)
"The Conqueror Worm" (poem, Nov. 1925)
"The Haunted Palace" (poem, Dec. 1925)
"Lenore" (poem, Jan. 1926)
"The Masque of the Red Death" (Mar. 1926)
"Eldorado" (poem, Sept. 1926)
"Ligeia" (Nov. 1926)
"The Thousandth and Second Tale" (Nov. 1927)
"Metzengerstein" (Jan. 1928)
"A Descent into the Maelstrom" (Jan. 1930)
"Berenice" (Apr. 1932)
"The Premature Burial" (Nov. 1933)
"William Wilson" (Nov. 1935)
"Israfel" (poem, Sept. 1938, one of Virgil Finlay's poetry series)
"The Fall of the House of Usher" (Aug. 1939)
"The Raven" (poem, Sept. 1939, one of Virgil Finlay's poetry series)
"Lenore" (poem, Mar. 1940, one of Virgil Finlay's poetry series)

In all, Weird Tales reprinted twenty poems and stories by Edgar Allan Poe. "The Murders in the Rue Morgue" was the first. The illustration is by the incomparable Harry Clarke (1889-1931), the artist most closely associated with Poe's work. 
Born in Ireland, Clarke worked as an illustrator and stained glass artist. His black and white illustrations are well known and often reprinted. His work in color is less well known. Here is a color illustration for "The Tell-Tale Heart." The pose of the murderer here is strikingly similar to that of the razor-wielding orangutan in the previous picture. Clarke's technique imbues his color illustration with the luminosity of stained glass.  
"The Premature Burial," a truly terrifying image by Clarke. 
Another color image by Clarke. I'm afraid I don't know the title of the story. Can anyone help? 
Clarke was influenced by art nouveau, as in this illustration for "The Masque of the Red Death," but his work was his own. Working in his native Ireland, he may have been on the fringes of European art movements, thus free to develop as he would.
Another illustration for an unknown story. I have included it here because it is such a striking departure from Clarke's other illustrations and because it presages Lovecraftian horrors to come.
Finally, Clarke's drawing for "The Fall of the House of Usher," the last story by Poe to appear in Weird Tales.
Harry Clarke's work never appeared in Weird Tales. Gahan Wilson on the other hand was the last artist to see his work printed in the pages of "The Unique Magazine." Here is Mr. Wilson's cover for the Classics Illustrated version of "The Raven and Other Poems." 
Mr. Wilson also created this cover for Rod Serling's The Twilight Zone Magazine (Aug. 1985), portraying monsters from the imagination of H.P. Lovecraft, a writer who--more than any other--can be considered an equal to Poe.
September 1939--World War II began and the image of Edgar Allan Poe appeared on the cover of Weird Tales magazine. He may have been the only author so honored. The artist was Virgil Finlay. Update (July 8, 2015): Virgil Finlay and Hannes Bok also appeared on the cover of Weird Tales, but not as themselves as authors. Instead, they drew anonymous self-portraits as part of their respective cover illustrations.
Text and captions copyright 2012 Terence E. Hanley