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Enoch L. Fancher

(Born: January 10, 1817 - Died: February 9, 1900)

Poe's lawyer in 1846-1847. Enoch Lewis Fancher was born on a farm in Dutchess County, NY, the son of Samuel Newman Fancher and Matilda Lewis (married November 7, 1813). He was a graduate of Weslayan College about 1836, and served briefly as an Methodist Episcopal minister in Lennox Massacheusetts, after which he studied law (serving in the offices of David Graham, Jr.). He was appointed by Governor J. T. Hoffman to fill a vacancy as a justice on the Supreme Court of the state of New York (1872-1874). The constitutionality of the appointment was challenged, but upheld, although he lost the subseqent election for the next term. An active and from all accounts a deeply religious man all of his life, he was president of the American Bible Society (1885-1890, thereafter honorary president until his death in 1900) and president of the New York Institute for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb (1886-1900). He wrote numerous articles for the Christian Advocate.

His law offices at 229 Broadway in New York city burned in 1866, destroying his library and most of his records. He continued to practice law until about 1899, when his health began to fail him. (At the time of his death, his home address was 141 Madison Avenue. He also maintained an estate named "Elfwood" in the town of New Windsor, near Newburgh, NY, where he spent his summers.) He apparently never married, and had no children.


  • Heartman, Charles F. and James R. Canny, A Bibliography of First Printings of the Writings of Edgar Allan Poe, Hattiesburg, MS: The Book Farm, 1943.
  • Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, ed., The Collected Works of Edgar Allan Poe (Vols 2-3 Tales and Sketches), Cambridge, Mass.: The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1978. (Second printing 1979)
  • Thomas, Dwight and David K. Jackson, The Poe Log: A Documentary Life of Edgar Allan Poe 1809-1849, Boston: G. K. Hall & Sons, 1987.

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