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Located at Belle Vue the museum exhibits Nevis at the time of Nelson, Naval Hero and Strategist who married a Nevis woman at Montpelier Estate in Nevis in 1787. The collection of Nelson memorabilia includes ceramics, enamels, figurines, paintings, prints, ship models and glassware. The largest such collection in the New World!

9 a.m. to 4 p.m.   - Monday-Friday
9 a.m. to 12 noon - Saturdays
Non-nationals, EC$13.00 US$5.00
Children $5.00 $2.00

"Visit the Museum of Nevis History "

1 - Exterior
2 - Exhibit 1
3 - Exhibit 2
4 - Exhibit 3
5 - Horatio Nelson

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  The name Horatio Nelson usually evokes such phrases as "England Expects That Every Man Will Do His Duty", or the "Nelson Touch". On the island of Nevis Horatio Nelson brings to mind "Fanny Nisbet", "Fig Tree Church", "Montpelier", "Nelson Spring", or " Nelson's Lookout at Saddle Hill".

  Horatio Nelson was born in England on September 29, 1758, along the Norfolk shore at Burnham Thorpe. With the loss of his mother, Catherine Suckling Nelson in 1767, rearing of the eight Nelson children was left to Horatio's father, Reverend Edmund Nelson. This, added to the heavy workload of overseeing the Parish at Burnham Thorpe and farming the 30 acres of farmland surrounding the parsonage, probably led to the early enlistment of young Horatio in the Royal Navy.

  On January 1, 1771, at the age of 12 years, Nelson joined the Royal Navy as a midshipman aboard the Raisonnable commanded by his uncle, Captain Maurice Suckling. At the young age of 20 years, Lt. Nelson became Captain Nelson and took command of the frigate Hitchinbroke in 1779.

  It was not until 1784, however, that Nelson made his mark on the Caribbean as a staunch enforcer of England's Navigation Acts. Assigned to English Harbour in Antigua, Nelson soon established himself as a force to be reckoned with when it came to illegal trading between the English colonies in the Caribbean and traders from the United States. His early assignment to Antigua, in command of H.M.S. Boreas, first brought him to Nevis in 1785.

  The culmination of Nelson's time in the area occurred in 1785 when passing near Nevis he spotted four American ships trading just off Charlestown in violation of the Navigation Acts. Nelson proceeded to board the ships and seize them and all their cargo. Shortly after this altercation Nelson was sued by the ships' captains, supported by the Charlestown merchants and traders, for assault and imprisonment in the amount of 40,000. In the ensuing trial, which Nelson did not attend, the judge upheld Nelson's right to seize the American ships.

  It was at Montpelier estate in the late spring of 1785 that he finally met a young widow named Frances Nisbet and her son Josiah. Nelson was quite taken by her refinement and resourcefulness in operating a large house. She was reported to have been an accomplished musician and to have spoken fluent French. "Nelson and Fanny quickly fell in love and by the time Nelson left for Antigua in August of 1785 the couple were betrothed. They were married on March 11, 1887 at Montpelier with the future King of England Prince William Henry (William IV) acting as father giver"
Captain Nelson was assigned to the Agamemnon in 1793 and soon moved into the time period of his life that brought his greatest triumphs and established him as England's great naval hero. Horatio Nelson had a skill at naval tactics that has been called a genius by some. The "Nelson Touch" has been used in the years since his death to refer to many instances in which Nelson was successful in battle. The "Nelson Touch" went beyond military plans and became the phrase used to refer to the ability of one man to touch the lives of many and command an almost unwavering loyalty. To include those same captains in the refinement of the tactics that they would be using in the upcoming battle was something that was rarely done by an admiral at the time. Any captain who left a record of his feelings after meeting with Nelson at that time in 1805 thought of Nelson as his personal friend.

  On October 21, 1805, off of the coast of Spain near Cape Trafalgar the battle took place that would keep the memory of Admiral Horatio Nelson alive and revered even today. The combined effort of the France and Spain was not enough to overcome Nelson's battle plan, since dubbed the "Nelson Touch". Issued by Admiral Nelson just as the English fleet was moving into position for battle, "England Expects That Every Man Will Do His Duty." was broadcast by signal flags to the fleet. The message was met by cheers from all ships and became a rallying cry for many generations of England. This short message, along with the "Nelson Touch", have become the two things most often associated with Nelson.

  At approximately 1:15 that afternoon, in the middle of the battle, Nelson fell to the deck of the Victory, hit in the shoulder by a sniper aboard a French ship The ball had been fired from above and struck him in the left shoulder, entered his chest, and lodged in his spine. Once carried belowdecks, he reported breathing to be difficult and that there was no feeling in the lower part of his body. Shortly after 4 p.m. Nelson was dead; England had lost her most famous naval hero. But the "Nelson Touch" lived on and the English fleet emerged victorious over the forces of Napoleon at Trafalgar. The Battle of Trafalgar, Nelson's most decisive victory, was also the battle that led to his death at 47 years of age. The memorial artifacts produced after Nelson's death is perhaps the largest for any human being and continues to grow even today.

  The Museum of Nevis History, is a rare treat for persons of all ages and is the largest collection of Nelson memorabilia in the western hemisphere. It is the Caribbean's newest museum presenting a story of Nevis and Nelson in a sensitive and professional manner. It sets the stage for Nelson's many glorious accomplishments by briefly telling the story of Nevis' history- Amerindian, European dominance, slavery and sugar. Many pieces of china, figurines, vases, models, prints and paintings along with hundreds of prints and paintings depict Nelson's life and afterlife that dominated English Naval history for two centuries.

Our gift shop has Nelson and Nevis memorabilia for sale.

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