While we are still thinking about where to put Charlottesville’s Lee and Jackson statues, how about considering putting a statue of Queen Charlotte — wife of George III — in their place?
Charlottesville is after all named after her; but, more to the point, some historians are increasingly persuaded that she was of mixed-race origin, descended from a Black branch of the Portuguese royal family, Alfonso III and his mistress Ouruana, a Black Moor.
The famous contemporary portrait by Sir Allan Ramsay clearly shows her with African features. The portrayal of her as a woman of color in the recent Netflix series “Bridgerton” of course draws on this tradition.
In our current heightened state of awareness of slavery and its legacy, I cannot think of another figure who might more suitably grace our downtown area. Shouldn’t Charlottesvillians celebrate Charlotte? After all, her other namesake city, Charlotte, North Carolina, already has two statues of her. Couldn’t we have at least one?