According to a report in Smithsonian Magazine, on the occasion of Charles Dicken’s 208th birthday, a museum named after him in London will be exhibiting more than 300 recently acquired artefacts. The same report states that the museum has acquired various items in association with the author like letters, artwork, jewellery. They have been sourced from a private collector based in the United States. It was made possible by a generous funding of £1.22m from the National Heritage Memorial Fund as well as contribution from Art Fund, Friends of the National Libraries and the Dickens Fellowship. The total of this come to £1.8m.
Cindy Sughrue, director of the Charles Dickens Museum was quoted referring to the acquisition as a “treasure trove,” and a “true once-in-a-lifetime moment for the museum”.
Thrilled to announce on #DickenBirthday the acquisition of over 300 items from the most substantial private collection of Dickens material in the world. 🥳
— Dickens Museum (@DickensMuseum) February 7, 2020
The items which also include 144 handwritten letters, 25 of which were not published before, are all related to his personal life. The report citing an article from The Guardian sheds some light on the nature of the letters.
“Picture me clambering over this, with a great leaping pole, and half a dozen iron points buckled on to the soles of my shoes, and washing my face with snow, and going down to drink melted ice like chrystal [sic], and staggering and hauling myself up into places like Dreams,” Dickens wrote. While in another, he wrote, “I have been writing my head off since ten o’clock.”
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