Black Lives Matter: Attacks on Britain and the British Empire

The report in the Sunday Telegraph on 4th October that some staff at the National Railway Museum in York have feared that its exhibits might be the targets of destructive anarchists from Black Lives Matter, prompts the thought that they should stand up more for their Museum in the social media and elsewhere.

Not only were the world’s first functioning railways and their rolling stock all designed and built in England’s workshops in the early 1830s, but by the end of the century those same workshops, greatly expanded, provided the whole British Empire including India, Canada and Australia, with the railway systems to knit these vast countries together for the lasting benefit of all their inhabitants.

The Museum houses engines which have been given the names of famous British heroes. To pick on Nelson’s engine because of its alleged “racist” connotations is particularly demented. In the nineteenth century, among black people, “Nelson” was an honoured name, because it stood proxy for the Royal Navy, whose Anti-Slavery patrols over a period of 60 years released thousands of slaves into freedom instead of captivity in Brazil, Cuba and other countries. At the age of nine, the 20th century’s most honoured black man was re-named Nelson by his school teacher, and this was the Christian name by which he was known throughout his long and illustrious life.

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