Christopher Columbus was awful (but this other guy …
I worked in Columbus, Ohio for five years and in 1992 during the 500th anniversary of the New World's discovery. The city mounted a celebration that lasted the entire year. In Columbus they have a replica of the Santa Maria, which Christopher Columbus sailed on during his epic voyage. The replica is a tourist attraction. There were even plans to erect a statue of Columbus, hundreds of feet tall. He is the original .
Columbus, The Original American Hero
Returning to the Spanish court with the six Indian captives who survived the return voyage (most of his captives had already died, and only two would survive a whole year), along with gold nuggets, parrots, and other New World paraphernalia was Columbuss finest hour. He was named Admiral of the Ocean Sea, cut in on 10% of the New Worlds loot, and a second voyage was immediately planned. Before he met with Ferdinand and Isabella, Columbus drafted a memorial regarding future colonization plans. Nearly two-thirds of the document was concerned with how to handle the gold. Inserted between paragraphs about securing the gold was a paragraph about building a church and converting the Indians. The sovereigns agreed with the document in principle and the second voyage was planned. The Spanish names of the sovereigns were Fernando and Isabel, and Columbuss Spanish name was Cristóbal Colón, but this essay uses their anglicized names.
For many years, Bill Bigelow, an Oregon high school teacher, played out the same scene for his students. He seized a student's purse and announced that the purse was his. He held it. Was possession enough? He removed the lipstick and announced that it was his. He then knew the purses contents; was that enough? His arguments rang hollow, particularly when the students saw his crime in the making. They did not yet know that the student whose purse was seized was the teacher's confederate. When his arguments failed to convince, he then asked, "What if I it?" The students chuckled a little, but rejected that argument as well. Then Bigelow asked, "So why do we say that Columbus 'discovered' America?" In that spirit, this essay will investigate the feat of Christopher Columbus, the original American hero.