“Poe-Boy Sandwich,” anyone? Boston’s newly inaugurated “Literary District” is the latest and most concerted attempt by a city to make a vacation destination out of dead authors’ haunts.
The city of Boston is embracing the spirit behind these sly literary popups, but in a new way. This past week, the city inaugurated the nation’s first “Literary District,” a bookish spin on the state’s “Cultural District” initiative, with a website consolidating information on the neighborhood’s literary cred and a calendar of events. (Those include such delights as impromptu Writers Booths, conversations with local bloggers, tours of the hotel where Ho Chi Minh was a baker and Malcolm X a busboy, and themed cuisine such as the “Mel-Ville Chowder” and “Poe-Boy Sandwich.”) All will take place within the district’s perimeters, the tourist-friendly area that extends from Back Bay East through Beacon Hill and ends at the southernmost tip of the Financial District.
The one-time homes of Henry David Thoreau, Louisa May Alcott, Robert Lowell, Henry James, Sylvia Plath, and Ted Hughes are within the perimeter, as are the former offices of The Colored American Magazine, The Woman’s Journal, and, yours truly, The Atlantic. The district’s goal is to make this rich intellectual history more “visible,” according to Literary District Coordinator Larry Lindner. He’s planning to eventually add honorary plaques and verse in store windows, then map all, virtually, in several themed tour apps, according to Boston Magazine. Phase One began on Sunday with the unveiling of a new statue of Edgar Allan Poe.
Source: Katie Kilkenny Oct 6 2014, 8:08 AM ET The Atlantic