stories/poems in public domain? : LUSENET : The Work of Edgar Allan Poe : One Thread

Are Poe's stories and poems in the public domain? Is it legal to download them from the Internet and copy them to use in my classroom?

-- Anonymous, September 03, 2001


Everything Poe wrote has long been in the public domain. He died decades before modern copyright laws, and had no children or formal estate. It is, in part, the lack of copyright regulations which make it so attractive to so many publishers to reprint his works. They don't need to pay anyone for the rights to do so.

-- Anonymous, September 04, 2001

But the actual online editions and versions with their format and descriptions are supposed to be the domain of the webmaster. Check out the warnings by the site author before using these copies in certain ways, especially publicly or commercially without giving credit to your online source who spent so much time posting them.

-- Anonymous, September 04, 2001

Technically, new editing and presentation of old material is covered by copyright, although the work itself is still copyright free. Use of such material in non-profit or educational situations is generally interpreted somewhat more freely than for commercial purposes. I cannot imagine that copyright regulations would prohibit you from printing and handing out copies of Poe's works to a classroom. I am sure that The Poe Society (at, which has an extraordinarily large selection of Poe's writings, would have no objections to the use you have described. If you are really picky, you could write to them just to be absolutely sure.

-- Anonymous, September 05, 2001

Moderation questions? read the FAQ