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UNITED STATES
1949

C. Auguste Dupin

Edgar Allan Poe

Jan. 19, 1809 (Boston, Mass.) - Oct. 7, 1849 (Baltimore, Md.)

"The father of the detective story"

Poe
Bulgaria 2009
Hungary 1948
Monaco 2009
Nicaragua 1972
San Marino 2009
São Tomé e Príncipe 2009
US 1949
US 2009

Scott #986
100th Anniversary of Poe's death.
Oct. 7, 1949.
perf. 10½×11


(Designed by Robert L. Miller, modeled on the Famous Americans series by William A. Roach, after an engraving by F.T. Stuart from the Library of Congress.)


Edgar Allan Poe's short story, The Murders in the Rue Morgue, first published in Graham's magazine in April, 1841, is considered the world's first detective story.
The story opens with the discovery of the violent murder of an old woman and her daughter; no grisly detail is spared in the description of the crime scene as it is discovered by neighbor's responding to the women's screams. The police are baffled by the fact that the murderer has managed to escape even though the women's apartment appears to have been completely sealed from the inside. The genteel but impoverished C. Auguste Dupin and his nameless friend - who narrates the story - offer their services to the police and, through a brilliant interpretation of the clues at the scene, identify the murderer - an escaped orangutan.
In its presentation of an amateur detective who uses "ratiocination" to solve a mystery, the story shaped a new genre of fiction. It influenced Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Dame Agatha Christie, and dozens of writers who borrowed, knowingly or not, Poe's original conception of the detective story.
Merriam-Webster's Encyclopedia of Literature, 1995