Charles Dickens in Richmond

Dickens wrote A Christmas Carol, David Copperfield and Great Expectations after visiting Richmond in 1842.

By Valentine Museum Staff

English author Charles Dickens (1812-1870) was one of the most celebrated writers of the 19th century.  His works were originally published in a weekly serial format, which created an avid following throughout the English-speaking world and beyond.

This Harper’s Weekly illustration enhanced by hand in pencil to illustrate the stage and railroad lines of Dickens’s 1842 journey from Aquia, north of Fredericksburg, into the city of Richmond.   From his notes and from the letters he sent to friends and family, Charles Dickens wrote American Notes. This travelogue offended his Richmond followers due to his outspoken criticism of the institution of slavery and the use of tobacco in the America.

Hibbs Print Collection, 1948

There is a map on the left that shows Dickens route from north of Fredericksburg into the city of Richmond. There is a wood engraving to the right that shows Dickens leaning out of the window of his stagecoach greating a man standing there. There is a description of the map and engraving at the bottom.
“Charles Dickens In Richmond,” 1842, Harper’s Weekly, October 8, 1864, Wood engraving, V.45.28.60, .61, The Valentine.

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Authors Valentine Museum Staff
Work Title Charles Dickens in Richmond
Published October 12, 2023
Updated May 24, 2024
Copyright © 2024 The Valentine Museum