Meet my Historical Adviser
Major H. Horton......was born in 1810, and is thus in a unique position to verify information I present about the Victorian era.
As a 10 yr. old boy in a school explained to his teacher,
"You see, Miss, Richard wasn't there in Victorian times,
and the Major was, so he knows much more about it."
Which rather puts me in my place.
Major Horton is, I believe, a first in the field of Historical interpretation and teaching.
The major is of course a ventriloquist's figure with a difference, as you can see, aimed at a realistic appearance from close up. It took me well over a year to make him and his chariot.
He could also be the ultimate first-person interpreter of Victorian history.
His real function, as well as being entertaining, is to educate.
Given an opportunity, he will present his views on such matters as
equal opportunities for girls, education, treatment of the lower orders, tenants, etc.
He's capable of really getting a school group indignant over his opinions, and sometimes quite vigorous arguments can follow.
It is astonishing how many Victorian ideas resonate with modern affairs in our world,
and the Major's trenchantly politically incorrect views can help to get children thinking.
His ideas, for example, on how to treat employees are anything but Fair Trade.
He can inform you about his long life history, many aspects of which illuminate Victorian history, of course.
Major Horton meets Her Majesty!
| On June 15th, 1858 Queen Victoria opened Aston Hall in Birmingham for the benefit of the people of that city.
On June 15th 2008, She re-appeared to commemorate the day, and Major Horton was honoured to be presented to her Majesty, who graciously allowed her picture to be taken; Lady Sarah Churchill appears to have found the occasion quite amusing, though as you'll note, the Major quite properly kept his gravity and dignity.
I'm most Grateful to Strange and Grange - do visit their excellent website -
firstly for presenting Queen Victoria so wonderfully,
and secondly for allowing me to use this picture of her most Britannic Majesty, who on other, previous occasions has graciously condescended to be most agreeable to yer 'umble servant!
Major Horton makes an unforgettable impression on those he meets.
These have included school children, museum visitors, and also staff at the places where he's worked with me.
People quickly take his role at face value: early in his career with me he met a couple of nonegenarians who had a very interesting conversation with him!
During one appearance, a boy began asking the Major about Victorian times. Dad really wanted to go on and do some shopping.
"Not yet," said his son firmly,
"I haven't finished asking him questions yet."
The Hitchin Morris Men also enjoyed their meeting...
There will, I am fairly sure, be more information about Major Horton to follow, as our career together develops.
Watch this space!
... well, perhaps not that exact space, but do ask me about the Major visiting your school or heritage site.
And it was great fun having him security checked by the staff at Earl's Court Exhibition Hall!
"And now you can stop busybodying about here and get back to the rest of York's charade;
go on, be off with you!"
(...if the computer you're using blocks Java script this button won't work,
so you'll just have to use the usual x button!)