Special Collections: Dickens

On display from February - March, 2010

The “Dickens in America” exhibit opened in Schaffer Library on February 9, 2010.  It commemorated Charles Dickens’ two mid-nineteenth century tours of the United States, both of which included stops in nearby Albany.  The exhibit featured first editions of Dickens’ fiction and non-fiction writings on the United States as well as archival materials from the papers of John Bigelow (Union College Class of 1835), who became personally acquainted with Dickens during his “public readings” tour of the U.S. in 1867/68.  Also featured in the exhibition:  the College’s recent acquisition of an illustrated first edition of Dickens’A Christmas Carol (1843) along with subsequent editions of this famous work, a condensed version of which Dickens included among his public readings in Albany in March 1868.

The exhibit opened with belated birthday cake for the “Inimitable” Dickens (who was born on February 7) provided by the students of Dickens House and concluded in early April with a staged reading of A Christmas Carol on April 12 in the Nott Memorial.  The reading was directed by Patricia Culbert  of the Department of Theater and Dance and featured performances by students, faculty members, and administrative staff.