literary artifacts

“Keeping time, time, time,” as Edgar Allan Poe writes in his poem, “The Bells,” preoccupied the author’s short life, which makes the object headed to auction next month in New York all the more fascinating: his pocket watch. Made of 18-karat gold, the open-face pocket watch is engraved in French, “Echappement A Cylindre En – Aiguilley – Edgar A. Poe – Pierre Huit Trous En Rubis.”

There is at least one good story coming out of Washington, D.C. this election season, and that is the grand opening on Saturday of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History & Culture. Thirteen years in the making, the museum has collected close to 37,000 artifacts that showcase the contributions of African Americans. It will be at the top of my to-visit list on my next trip to D.C.