Edgar Lee Master's Spoon River Anthology was an immediate commercial success when it was published in 1915. Unconventional in both style and content, it shattered the myths of small town American life. A collection of epitaphs of residents of a small town, a full understanding of Spoon River requires the reader to piece together narratives from fragments contained in individual poems.
There are several ways you can navigate this site: the original order groups together related people in a meaningful way. You may find it easier to look up specific people in the alphabetical index, or to use the search form on the right. A selection of Spoon River's most prominent, notorious and talkative citizens can be found below; a breakdown of poems from the 1915 and 1916 editions is also available.
Parts of Spoon River Anthology were serialized in 1914 -- today you can subscribe to our daily epitaph RSS feed. You can also subbscribe to a comments RSS feed. Don't use RSS? Subcribe to the epitaph of the day via e-mail.