Edward Colston and Bristol

By Madge Dresser

Issue 4, Autumn, 1999 p.13.

Benefactor or Brute? Edward Colston’s statue has long presided over Bristol’s city centre. The monument proclaiming the benefactions which this immensely wealthy merchant, bestowed on the city in the early eighteenth century, was defaced in 1999 by an obscenity which included the words ‘slave trader’ spray-painted across the statue’s base in blood-red paint.  Madge Dresser reviews Ken Morgan’s scholarly pamphlet, addressing the contentious history of the man whose statue once stood in Bristol city centre.  

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