In 1864, the actor Charles Fechter gave Charles Dickens a pre-fabricated two-story Swiss chalet house that Dickens had put together on his Gadshill property. This illustration of the chalet is from John Forster's The Life of Charles Dickens. Gadshill, a mansion in the English country of Kent, was the country home of Charles Dickens. Charles Dickens (1812-1870) is one of the best known and most distinguished English novelists. He lived during the Victorian era. Among his best-known works are: A Christmas Carol, David Copperfield, Great Expectations, Oliver Twist, and A Tale of Two Cities.