Author Thomas Dresser will speak about his book Mystery on the Vineyard: Politics, Passion and Scandal on East Chop, a true story of the shocking 1940 murder of an elderly visitor to the Island, on Wednesday, Sept. 17 at 5:30 p.m. at the Chilmark Public Library.

Mr. Dresser has previously self-published five booklets featuring favorite New England haunts.

Mystery on the Vineyard researches the 1940 brutal robbery, rape and murder of Ms. Clara Smith of Dorchester. The 72-year-old widow was studying at the Rice School of the Spoken Word on East Chop for a two-week session on diction. She was a reader in her Christian Science Church — which had ties to the Rice School — and attended the session with a younger female friend.

Come learn about the investigation that followed the crime, the district attorney with a personal agenda, the eccentric teacher who is arrested and charged with murder, and the dapper off-Islander who gets away with murder. Mr. Dresser plans to present a lively discussion about this little known Vineyard murder mystery. The event is free and open to all and sponsored by the Friends of the Chilmark Public Library. For details, call 508-645-3360.