10 crazy facts about Christopher Columbus…


  1. Christopher Columbus DID NOT discover the main landmass of America. He only discovered the West Indies; which he named such, believing he had reached the western edge of India. He never set foot on the mainland of North America.
  1. The first sight of land was on October 12, 1492. This island in the Bahamas (Caribbean) was named Rodrigo de Triana. It is now called San Salvador.
  1. Before getting his commission and setting off to discover the trade route, Christopher Columbus was a PIRATE and made a living attacking other ships.
  1. Christopher Columbus became a SLAVE TRADER. He pioneered the American Slave Trade. Excerpts from Columbus’ logbook note that the natives “…would make fine servants. With 50 men we could subjugate them and make them do whatever we want.” He later wrote, “Let us in the name of the Holy Trinity go on sending all the slaves that can be sold.”
  1. Columbus destroyed the native population of Haiti (the Taino Indians); mainly through contagious diseases; but also forced gold taxation leading to torture, murder, suicides and the like. He then began shipping African slaves to the island, which has had consequences reaching into modern day.
  1. The birth name of Christopher Columbus was Cristoforo Colombo. He was born in Italy.
  1. The crew of the first voyage consisted of 24 men for the Nina, 26 for the Pinta, and 40 for the Santa Maria. There were NO WOMEN allowed.
  1. The name of Columbus’ ship “Pinta”, is Spanish for “Prostitute”.
  1. Half of Columbus’ voyages ended in disaster. On his first voyage (1492), his fully outfitted flagship, the Santa Maria, ran aground and sank. On his fourth trip, his ship rotted away and he spent a year with his men marooned on Jamaica.
  1. Christopher Columbus has been viewed as an intrepid explorer, a monster, and a slave trader; who unleashed horrors and conquest upon unsuspecting natives. He was the first in a long line of many in the continued conquest of the Americas. However, scholars note #Columbus had both admirable qualities and negative ones: even though it appears he was brave, Columbus is also seen as a very flawed human being.

In Columbus’ day, things were looked at differently. He was probably seen as a hero, and in some ways a good businessman. Even to this day, some of his achievements are still celebrated in his name. But over time, the facts about him and his achievements have been blurred and forgotten by the masses. Does it make Columbus any less of a man? That is for you to decide.


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