A number of special events are set to place place in Chatham-Kent to coincide with Black History Month, which begins this week. The Chatham-Kent Dickens Fellowship will hold the annual Dickens Gala Birthday Celebration on February 19 at Club Lentinas. The event will feature a presentation about Charles Dickens and Harriet Beecher-Stowe, the author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. A number of speakers will focus on the pair's views of slavery and abolition.
Bryan Prince, a director at the Buxton Historical Site and Museum, helped to coordinate the presentation and says the two authors had very similar opinions. "They share a disdain for slavery, so we're going to look at their feelings on subject [and] their actions on the subject," he says. " Another event will be held on February 20, when the museum will host a murder mystery dinner at the Retro Suites hotel in Chatham. The mystery is based around a real murder that occurred in Buxton in 1862. Prince says he conducted research at the public archives in Toronto and the Kingston Penitentiary to gather historical facts about the murder. "It's really nice to kind of do some different twists to the stories," he says. "You always have to keep studying, keep learning... and keeping interested in always finding out more."