The Dickens Fellowship, founded in 1902, is a worldwide association of people who share an interest in the life and works of Charles Dickens (1812 - 1870). For more information about our organisation visit the organisation page.

The DF can be contacted at: postbox@dickensfellowship.org.  Please address any queries or comments about this website or the Dickens Fellowship generally to this address.

Please direct any queries about Dickens's life, works, later reputation and interpretation – and also any enquiries concerning the Fellowship’s history to: WTo1@aol.com.

For the latest news and comment, please refer to Household Words at the lower left of this page. Use the Search Box in the upper right to enter a word or phrase to search the entire site.

Message from the President

Subscribe to The Dickensian and enjoy free access online to all issues from 1905 onwards.


The Dickensian's back issues, from 1905 onwards, are available electronically, and word-searchable, through ProQuest publishers. Individual subscribers to The Dickensian are given complimentary access to these online resources, for personal use only, by application to Geoff Dicks geoffrey.dicks@btinternet.com


Opening of the Suzannet Research Library at the Charles Dickens Museum

Louisa Price, recently appointed Curator at the Charles Dickens Museum in Doughty Street, has informed us of the opening of the Suzannet Research Library at the Museum.The Suzannet Research Library will be open to researchers by appointment 10.30-12.30pm and 1.30-3.30pm under the supervision of the curator who can be contacted on Louisa.price@dickensmuseum.com or on the main museum line 020 7405 2127. Because of time and space limitations, it is a service for researchers with specific interests or things to see, rather than those after a general look. Booking is essential.

Annual Wreath Laying In Westminster Abbey

On Monday 9th June – the 144th anniversary of the death of Charles Dickens was marked by the annual wreath laying ceremony at his grave in Westminster Abbey.  This year the wreath was laid by Dr Sandra Spencer, Principal Lecturer in English at the University of North Texas and President of the Denton Branch of the Dickens Fellowship. The photo of Dr Spencer at the grave is by Ashley Utrup.

New South Wales Dickens Society Country Weekend 31/10-2/11

The NSW Dickens Society in Sydney invites you to join them for a Country Weekend in the beautiful Blue Mountains from 31 October – 2 November. This will be a joint event with the Australian Bronte Association and will be entitled: North and South.  The programme is now complete and is attached. Anyone interested – please contact: nswdickens@gmail.com.

Dickens Fellowship Charter Presented to Baltimore Branch

Baltimore charterAt the AGM of the Dickens Fellowship in Chicago on Saturday 19 July, President of the new Baltimore Branch Menalcus Lankford received his Branch charter from Joint Honorary General Secretary Lee Ault. Menalcus reminded the audience that in 1842 Dickens described Barnum’s Hotel in the city as being: ‘the most comfortable of all the hotels of which I had any experience in the United States’.

NSW Dickensians pay tribute to Dr Lis Kirkby OAM & Catherine Barker OAM

Catherine Barker OAM, Michelle Cavanagh and Dr Lis Kirkby OAM of the NSW Dickens Society

Before the NSW Dickens Society June meeting began, Dickensians gave hearty congratulations to two of their esteemed members.  First Lis Kirkby - NSWDS 93 year old member who has become the oldest person in Australia to be awarded a PhD - was invited to tell the meeting a little about the subject of her thesis; Will we ever learn from history: the impact of orthodoxy on unemployment during the Great Depression in Australia.  Lis then cut the cake made especially in her honour.  Then members present congratulated Past President Catherine Barker who was awarded a Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) with a citation which read "For services to the community through literary societies.  Also the recognition of her service caring for residents of Lourdes Retirement Village in Killara for over twenty five years."

The Dickensian Summer 2014

Some features in the coming issue ---

  • ‘Ellen Ternan and Charles Dickens: A Re-evaluation of the Evidence’ An article meticulously and sceptically re-analysing the evidence for and against CD’s intimacy with Ellen Ternan.
  • ‘Charles Dickens’s Manager, Thomas Headland’ A biographical article on Thomas Headland, Dickens’s incompetent Readings Tours Manager (nicknamed ‘BlockHead – land’ by Dickens), with some new discoveries about the man.
  • An article by Michael Slater introducing a batch of previously unpublished Dickens letters concerning the Guild of Literature and Art.

Dickens Secondary School Prize Awarded

The Dickens Fellowship has, since 2011, sponsored a Dickens Essay Competition for schools, administered by the English Association. The 2013 prize was divided between Isabelle Stuart and Eleanor Winn, both of St Paul's School for Girls, Hammersmith,  London: they received a prize of £100 each, presented to them on 1st May 2014 by Dr Tony Williams.  Runner-up Emma Clarkson of Mount St Mary's College, Sheffield received a prize of £50.

Pickwickian Endeavours – The First Bi-Annual North American Dickens Conference

The North of Boston Branch of the Dickens Fellowship will host the first three-day Bi-Annual Dickens Conference, entitled Pickwickian Endeavours, over 26-28 September 2014. The venue will be Salem State University, Salem, MA. 

Charles Dickens Primary Awards for 2014

This logo was created for us by Mick Manning and Brita GranströmDetails of the Charles Dickens Primary Awards for 2014 have now been announced.  Primary schools are invited to participate in the competition which is sponsored by the Dickens Fellowship and the English Association. The award is the successor to the More Dickens Primary Competition held in 2012.

This Web Site is dedicated to the late Martha Rosso  (1922 - 2003)

A member of the Philadelphia Branch for over 35 years, Martha Rosso (née Pamplin) was one of the Fellowship's most dynamic and best loved figures. She contributed unstintingly to its business right to the very end of her life. Click here to read more about Martha Rosso.