Edward Colston statue pulled down

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lpm
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Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by lpm » Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm

Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by EACLucifer » Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:39 pm

lpm wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm
Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
Now fish him out and stick him in the museum in an appropriate exhibit re: the slave trade, because while that statue should have been removed long ago, it is important to remember that scum like that was not just tolerated, but lauded.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by tenchboy » Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:46 pm

lpm wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm
Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Martin Y » Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:59 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:39 pm
lpm wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm
Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
Now fish him out and stick him in the museum in an appropriate exhibit re: the slave trade, because while that statue should have been removed long ago, it is important to remember that scum like that was not just tolerated, but lauded.
And lauded in the 1890s, I gather. The statue went up well over a century after he died and left Bristol all that dosh. Surely it was controversial at the time. What was the intent, I wonder? Was there an element of fishing for legacies: "leave your fortune to the city and maybe we'll put up a statue to you too"?

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by lpm » Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:13 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:39 pm
lpm wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm
Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
Now fish him out and stick him in the museum in an appropriate exhibit re: the slave trade, because while that statue should have been removed long ago, it is important to remember that scum like that was not just tolerated, but lauded.
Yes. History never stops and this is a good example of how we change and improve. It's symbolic, but an important symbol.
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Fishnut » Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:21 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:39 pm
lpm wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm
Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
Now fish him out and stick him in the museum in an appropriate exhibit re: the slave trade, because while that statue should have been removed long ago, it is important to remember that scum like that was not just tolerated, but lauded.
I agree with everything except the fishing him out. I think he needs to lie at the bottom of the river for a bit. There is symbolism to him being 'drowned' and pulling him out too soon could negate that. I hope he becomes a time capsule, that left there with a plaque near the spot, and that in generation or two he gets pulled back up, probably as a result of yet another redesign of the centre, and then he goes into a museum with the necessary context not just of Colston's time, and the late Victorian age that decided to memorialise him, but also the context of these protests and the subsequent (hopefully) improvements in race relations in the city and wider country that result.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by dyqik » Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:31 pm

Fishnut wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:21 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:39 pm
lpm wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm
Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
Now fish him out and stick him in the museum in an appropriate exhibit re: the slave trade, because while that statue should have been removed long ago, it is important to remember that scum like that was not just tolerated, but lauded.
I agree with everything except the fishing him out. I think he needs to lie at the bottom of the river for a bit. There is symbolism to him being 'drowned' and pulling him out too soon could negate that. I hope he becomes a time capsule, that left there with a plaque near the spot, and that in generation or two he gets pulled back up, probably as a result of yet another redesign of the centre, and then he goes into a museum with the necessary context not just of Colston's time, and the late Victorian age that decided to memorialise him, but also the context of these protests and the subsequent (hopefully) improvements in race relations in the city and wider country that result.
Stick a marker buoy on it, and a plaque commemorating the protests on the shore with a view of the buoy.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Fishnut » Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:38 pm

dyqik wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:31 pm
Fishnut wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:21 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:39 pm


Now fish him out and stick him in the museum in an appropriate exhibit re: the slave trade, because while that statue should have been removed long ago, it is important to remember that scum like that was not just tolerated, but lauded.
I agree with everything except the fishing him out. I think he needs to lie at the bottom of the river for a bit. There is symbolism to him being 'drowned' and pulling him out too soon could negate that. I hope he becomes a time capsule, that left there with a plaque near the spot, and that in generation or two he gets pulled back up, probably as a result of yet another redesign of the centre, and then he goes into a museum with the necessary context not just of Colston's time, and the late Victorian age that decided to memorialise him, but also the context of these protests and the subsequent (hopefully) improvements in race relations in the city and wider country that result.
Stick a marker buoy on it, and a plaque commemorating the protests on the shore with a view of the buoy.
Google maps had temporarily moved its location to the harbour but it's moved it back to the plinth for some reason. Hopefully the move will be made permanent.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by basementer » Mon Jun 08, 2020 3:01 am

Fishnut wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 9:21 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:39 pm
lpm wrote:
Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:36 pm
Lol. Colston fell off his pedestal in Bristol and ended up in the harbour.

Amazing it took till 2020 to get this done.
Now fish him out and stick him in the museum in an appropriate exhibit re: the slave trade, because while that statue should have been removed long ago, it is important to remember that scum like that was not just tolerated, but lauded.
I agree with everything except the fishing him out. I think he needs to lie at the bottom of the river for a bit. There is symbolism to him being 'drowned' and pulling him out too soon could negate that. I hope he becomes a time capsule, that left there with a plaque near the spot, and that in generation or two he gets pulled back up, probably as a result of yet another redesign of the centre, and then he goes into a museum with the necessary context not just of Colston's time, and the late Victorian age that decided to memorialise him, but also the context of these protests and the subsequent (hopefully) improvements in race relations in the city and wider country that result.
I like the sound of leaving him there for a while. It has a resonance with the way many slaves died while being transported and were thrown over the side without ceremony.
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by bagpuss » Mon Jun 08, 2020 10:02 am

A friend shared on FB this Twitter thread. It seems that the council has been trying to change the wording on the plaque that accompanies the statue for a little while (although still somewhat shockingly recently) but has been prevented in doing so by a group of people who clearly still want Colston to be remembered more for his "good" works than bad.

https://twitter.com/katewilliamsme/stat ... e_Jz84ixW0


Bottom of the harbour with associated buoy and plaque sounds like the best place for him, as long as he's not creating a danger to shipping.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Martin Y » Mon Jun 08, 2020 10:31 am

It would be interesting to know how controversial the erection of the statue was in the first place. Its Wikipedia page only says public appeals failed to raise the £1,000 needed and the proposer paid the shortfall himself.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by discovolante » Mon Jun 08, 2020 10:32 am

There is a long piece about Colston, the statue and related things here: https://www.brh.org.uk/site/articles/my ... hin-myths/
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Martin Y » Mon Jun 08, 2020 10:55 am

discovolante wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 10:32 am
There is a long piece about Colston, the statue and related things here: https://www.brh.org.uk/site/articles/my ... hin-myths/
Yes, I just came back to post about that but missed the edit window.

"Bristol Radical History Group" so it has its own political angle but it's full of interesting factual stuff. It argues that while other philanthropists had given more to the city, Colston was selected to be "reinvented" in the 1890s by a section of the Great and the Good, as a kind of created myth of an ideal past. With parades, dinners and ceremonies, it sounds like they made him into the city's patron saint in all but name.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by lpm » Mon Jun 08, 2020 11:36 am

discovolante wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 10:32 am
There is a long piece about Colston, the statue and related things here: https://www.brh.org.uk/site/articles/my ... hin-myths/
Thanks, very interesting.

Like everyone else, I assumed it more closely linked to Colston's era.
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Tessa K » Mon Jun 08, 2020 12:15 pm

I grew up near Bristol and went to school there so I have a particular interest in this. I thought the statue was long gone, especially since there has been so much discussion about renaming the Colston Hall and other parts of the city.

Bristol's mayor has said
the statue would be retrieved from the harbour "at some point" and it was likely to end up in a city museum.
Leaving it in the harbour is not very practical so this would be the best option, particularly to silence people who have said the statue's removal is 'erasing history'. They seem to be confusing history with convenient fictions.

The police have been criticised in some quarters for not intervening but this was a smart move or the situation could have escalated into a full-on riot in a city with a history of rioting.

The current BBC2 series A House Through Time looks at a house in Bristol; it covers the period of the slave trade and has some very interesting information on both the trade and the city. The presenter has written a good article about the statue

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... are_btn_tw

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Gfamily » Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:34 pm

Tessa K wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 12:15 pm
I grew up near Bristol and went to school there so I have a particular interest in this. I thought the statue was long gone, especially since there has been so much discussion about renaming the Colston Hall and other parts of the city.

Bristol's mayor has said
the statue would be retrieved from the harbour "at some point" and it was likely to end up in a city museum.
Leaving it in the harbour is not very practical so this would be the best option, particularly to silence people who have said the statue's removal is 'erasing history'. They seem to be confusing history with convenient fictions.

The police have been criticised in some quarters for not intervening but this was a smart move or the situation could have escalated into a full-on riot in a city with a history of rioting.

The current BBC2 series A House Through Time looks at a house in Bristol; it covers the period of the slave trade and has some very interesting information on both the trade and the city. The presenter has written a good article about the statue

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfr ... are_btn_tw
Yes, David Olusoga is very good.
The digital channel "Together TV" has been repeating the "Black and British: A Forgotten History" documentary series that he wrote and presented in 2016.

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Episodes 2-4 on BBC4 from 00:40 onwards on Tuesday 16th June.
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Martin Y » Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:51 pm

Odd to think that the people who built the statue of Coulston are closer in time to us than they were to Coulston himself.

It's like that thing about <famous dinosaur> being closer in time to us than to <earlier but also famous dinosaur> except with metaphorical dinosaurs.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Fishnut » Mon Jun 08, 2020 2:45 pm

Martin Y wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:51 pm
Odd to think that the people who built the statue of Coulston are closer in time to us than they were to Coulston himself.

It's like that thing about <famous dinosaur> being closer in time to us than to <earlier but also famous dinosaur> except with metaphorical dinosaurs.
FYI, it's Colston, not Coulston

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Martin Y » Mon Jun 08, 2020 3:05 pm

Oops. Ta.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Tessa K » Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:01 pm

Fishnut wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 2:45 pm
Martin Y wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:51 pm
Odd to think that the people who built the statue of Coulston are closer in time to us than they were to Coulston himself.

It's like that thing about <famous dinosaur> being closer in time to us than to <earlier but also famous dinosaur> except with metaphorical dinosaurs.
FYI, it's Colston, not Coulston
You're getting him mixed up with Agent Coulson.

Btw, through this thread Fishnut and I have found we went to the same school. Small world.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by FlammableFlower » Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:23 pm

I'm trying to find the right words... there are a number of people I know on Facebook through running who have been very scathing of the removal of the statue - mainly from a law and order perspective, but there's a distinct undertone that it shouldn't come down full stop.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by lpm » Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:36 pm

My God! Racists on Facebook? That's a shock development.
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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Martin Y » Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:49 pm

FlammableFlower wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:23 pm
I'm trying to find the right words... there are a number of people I know on Facebook through running who have been very scathing of the removal of the statue - mainly from a law and order perspective, but there's a distinct undertone that it shouldn't come down full stop.
One colleague whose posts I see on FB has posted similar outraged law & order stuff, also implying the statue shouldn't come down. But has also posted videos purporting to show famous black people explaining why there's no such thing as systemic racism. Not engaging. No telling how deep that chasm is.

A different ex colleague is very angry about the protests spreading Covid. There at least I could engage. Helpfully [1 of 2] and his girlfriend had told us just yesterday about the Manchester protest: no hostility, everyone in masks and careful social distancing. So I passed that on. I may also have mentioned something along the lines of if you think the UK protests are all about one man being killed in another country, have a think about whether you might be part of the problem. That seemed to sting enough to provoke a response that "these idiots" will make Boris look tough on crime and get him reelected. So, yeah, that part of the problem thing. If you think it's about Boris...

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Fishnut » Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:55 pm

FlammableFlower wrote:
Mon Jun 08, 2020 4:23 pm
I'm trying to find the right words... there are a number of people I know on Facebook through running who have been very scathing of the removal of the statue - mainly from a law and order perspective, but there's a distinct undertone that it shouldn't come down full stop.
I've started asking people why they think the statue should stay up. It was erected long after Colston's death, it doesn't look like him, and while the council agreed that something needed to be done to contextualise it no-one could agree how. If Bristol was able to remember Colston for the 174 years between his death and the erection of the statue chances are we'll manage to remember him after it's pulled down. And even if we do forget him, his name is still in the history books, no-one's grabbing the tipex and erasing him. History is constantly being reassessed and the reassessment of Colston has led to the decision that he no longer deserves such a prominent position, particularly in a city with a large Black population (a population that largely originates from the Caribbean, giving a high chance that at least some of them are descendants of the very slaves that Colston's company shipped across the Atlantic and profited from so greatly). So given all that, what's accomplished by keeping him? What statement is being made? The only statement I can see is a big FU to all those who think that we shouldn't be celebrating a slave trader.

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Re: Edward Colston statue pulled down

Post by Bird on a Fire » Mon Jun 08, 2020 5:14 pm

The "erasing history" argument is particularly misguided. We remember history through books, not statues. It's not like Germany should be forced to erect statues of prominent Nazis to help remember that chapter of history.

He should be replaced with a slavery memorial IMHO.
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