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As the world celebrates what would have been Julia Child’s 100th birthday, Charlestonians packed into the Library Society to celebrate the American icon with a lecture by noted Charleston chef and restaurant proprietor Robert Dickson.

There was hardly an empty seat in the room, and guests listened with rapt attention as Dickson detailed his friendship with Julia Child. Dickson opened with a song and moved to a talk punctuated with charming video clips of Child, biographical tidbits, and personal letters exchanged between Dickson and Child. “Could you imagine taking the time to write to some 20-year-old kid as your show is about to launch?” Dickson laughed. “I’d be planning a party... Or making food for a party!” 

The talk came to an end with a loud round of applause, and the large crowd migrated eagerly toward a chocolate Grand Marnier cake made by Dickson himself, along with savory bites and a pate made from Child’s signature recipe. Guests lingered into the evening, many waiting their turn to speak to Dickson before heading out into the warm summer evening. 

The Charleston Library Society was founded in 1748, and is credited with paving the way for the founding of the College of Charleston in 1770. Today the Library Society remains an active membership library, maintained through the memberships and gifts of individuals. The Library Society also hosts a number of speakers, classes, and cultural events.