Nelson and the Slave Trade: A Position Statement by The Nelson Society
In the wake of the ‘Black Lives Matter’ (BLM) protests (June 2020) the issue as to whether Nelson was racist has again been raised. In consequence BLM have identified Nelson’s Column as a statue that should be looked at in light of Nelson’s perceived role in supporting the slave trade. These concerns have mainly arisen from an article in the Guardian newspaper in 2017 that referred to Nelson as a ‘white supremacist’. The article used a poor and provocative interpretation of events to serve a pre-determined narrative. Indeed the article has gone against over 1,000 prior biographies of Nelson over a 200 year period, not one of which has ever accused Nelson of being pro-slavery, racist or even a white supremacist. The Nelson Society is firmly of the view that there is no evidence at all to support the concerns of these allegations.