As everyone tucks into Netflix‘s crime show The Pale Blue Eye, we explore whether the mysterious poet was ever in the army.

Edgar Allan Poe was one of the world’s most famous poets and is widely considered the inventor of the detective fiction genre. The gothic crime thriller The Pale Blue Eye starring Christian Bale as detective Augustus Landor also stars Harry Melling as the young poet, Edgar Allan Poe.

In true crime-finding fashion, viewers are now digging into Poe’s world, wanting to uncover its many secrets and one of the questions they unraveled is: did Edgar Allan Poe ever serve in the military? If you’re one of the mystery hunters, there is no need to look any further as here we rip back the cloak with the answer.

Did Edgar Allan Poe ever enlist in the army?

Before revealing the answer, let’s get one thing straight before we start; the accounts showcased in The Pale Blue Eye are, of course, fictional and based on the book by Louis Bayard but moving on from that, Poe did, however, attend the United States Military Academy at West Point which is situated in New York.

Poe enlisted in the army under the name “Edgar A. Perry” on May 27, 1827, and told them he was 22 when in reality he was actually 18. Although his military stay was for a relatively short period of time, Poe reached the rank of Sergeant Major for Artillery.

Even though Poe did very well in his classwork, he despised the harsh military rules and the bland food. After giving up on his classes, he was court-martialed and formally dismissed from the academy on March 6, 1831, for “gross neglect of duty and disobedience for refusing to attend formations”.

Where to watch The Pale Blue Eye

If all this talk has put you in the mood to watch a gruesome murder and become an armchair detective, The Pale Blue Eye is probably right up your street. Directed by Scott Cooper who previously directed the 2021 movie Antlers as well as the 2017 film Hostiles, you can get stuck into the dark and thrilling crime show right now on Netflix.

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