Tue | Nov 28, 2023

Jury still out on Lady Musgrave

Published:Wednesday | June 24, 2020 | 12:18 AM


For years, Lady Musgrave has been deemed racist.

According to the National Library of Jamaica, “Though unconfirmed, it is believed that Lady Musgrave Road was built at her request to bypass Hope Road and the home of Jamaica’s first black millionaire, George Stiebel.”

Interestingly, although the happening is yet to be verified, many people think it is indeed true. Readers are sure to overlook “though unconfirmed” and unquestioningly accept a mere supposition as truth. Moreover, other publications have also perpetuated the unverified claim, and they have been quite convincing.

Racism and classism have truly taken a horrendous toll on the black collective, but, in the absence of indisputable evidence, we should be careful about repeating this particular Musgrave narrative.

Special thanks to Marcia Thomas for her thorough and illuminating piece on Lady Musgrave – ‘Racist or women’s advocate? The case of Lady Musgrave, 1833-1920’.

Carolyn Cooper must also be applauded for revisiting the issue and offering fresh insight.

We have much food for thought!