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$1,395 pledged of $50,000 goal
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By Jeff Abugel
$1,395 pledged of $50,000 goal
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About this project

 Located in Old Towne Petersburg, Virginia, the building where Edgar Allan Poe spent his honeymoon in 1836 was largely forgotten until a few years ago. When locals informed me of the building's history, I thoroughly researched it and confirmed that Poe had indeed stayed there as a guest of his friend, local poet and newspaper editor Hiram Haines. Haines ran a coffee house on the main floor, and visitors stayed on the upper levels. I became obsessed with purchasing the building, and in 2010, brought back Hiram Haines Coffee House after it had been gone for 179 years. We operated the business and offered food, beer, wine, books and live entertainment, just as Hiram Haines did. But the real objective was to restore the second level where Poe stayed, so honeymooners from around the world could spend the night in the same rooms he did. Few places where Poe slept still exist.  This one is completely original and beautiful, but needs restoration and code compliance to be habitable. It was an elegant, first class hotel throughout the early 19th century, when Petersburg was a thriving tourist venue.  It needs to be a place where people can stay for the next hundred years. This will require new electricity, heating and cooling, plumbing, and cosmetic restoration. The beautiful bare bones are all there. While it is now well known in the region, and nationally, during the last four years the coffee house business never made enough money to restore the upper levels, despite the video shown here, made by Emmy winning film maker Jesse Vaughn, and the book written by the owner, "Edgar Allan Poe's Petersburg" published by the History Press.  For the sake of preserving this important site, we need help. We have spent all we can to bring it back as a gift to Petersburg and Poe fans. It needs relatively little to realize its full potential. Please help. We have put our hearts and souls into this project. It would be a shame if we had to sell it to developers would convert it to apartments and destroy this valuable piece of history forever.

Upper level bedroom
Upper level bedroom
Our covered alley for live music.
Our covered alley for live music.
Part of the unrestored 2nd level suite.
Part of the unrestored 2nd level suite.
Our local Celtic band plays often.
Our local Celtic band plays often.
Pictures of writers, and books line our walls.
Pictures of writers, and books line our walls.
Sterling Hundley signed print "Poe's Honeymoon."  One goes to each contributor of $1000 or more.
Sterling Hundley signed print "Poe's Honeymoon." One goes to each contributor of $1000 or more.
Get this book for the whole story of the building and our project. Free signed copy to all contributors.
Get this book for the whole story of the building and our project. Free signed copy to all contributors.
Eddy and Sissy wine stones
Eddy and Sissy wine stones
Our custom card sets.
Our custom card sets.

Risks and challenges

Restoring an historic property always presents unforeseen problems. Our challenge will be to meet all codes and safety issues relevant to bed and breakfast hotels, while trying to preserve the property's history and authenticity. Fortunately, we know many high quality contractors specializing in historic properties in Petersburg. We also enjoy the benefit of having had a tremendous amount of publicity during the last four years.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    Pledge a buck and Hiram and Eddy Poe will send you good Karma for the rest of your days.

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    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Five bucks gets you an 8 X 10 color print of Hiram Haines himself—a copy of a self-portrait he did in his private journal, circa 1820.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    Pledge $10 and we'll take you upstairs to have a look at the unrestored honeymoon suite, as long as you can come by before work begins. (Then you will see a delicate work in progress).

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    This pledge gets you a pound of our beloved Hiram Haines custom blend coffee. A rich dark blend.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Pledge $25 and receive a pair of Eddy Poe and Virginia Clemm wine stones. Images of the couple on square stones; an exclusive from Hiram Haines.

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Pledge this amount and you'll receive a Poe loves Virginia tee shirt and a set of our raven-themed cards (produced in-house).

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Any pledge of $100 or more will receive a personalized signed copy of "Edgar Allan Poe's Petersburg."

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Contributors of $500 or more will receive a copy of Sterling Hundley's limited edition print (200 made), signed and numbered at the honeymoon site. They will also receive a personalized, signed and personalized copy of the book "Edgar Allan Poe's Petersburg."

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    Pledge $750 or more About $750

    Candlelight Dinner for Two in the Honeymoon Suite. Imagine a five course dinner in the unrestored rooms where Eddy and Sissy once did the same thing. Why not do it around Poe's birthday in January?

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Each person pledging this amount will receive one night's stay for two in the restored Honeymoon suite, as well as signed copies of the book, "Poe's Petersburg," and a limited edition print (200) "Poe's Honeymoon," signed and numbered at the honeymoon suite by Richmond artist Sterling Hundley.

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Contributors of $5000 or more will be able to stay in Poe's honeymoon rooms as our guests for three nights. (2 person limit). The largest contributor will have the option of staying for four nights in May, on the actual honeymoon dates. Also, a signed, personalized copy of "Edgar Allan Poe's Petersburg" and a limited edition print (200) "Poe's Honeymoon," signed and numbered at the honeymoon suite by Richmond artist Sterling Hundley.

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Funding period

- (60 days)