Hidden Truth About The Main Character of Columbus Day

Many people know Christopher Columbus, whether it be from in school or hearing about Columbus Day. Christopher Columbus’s real name was actually Cristoforo Colombo. Columbus was born in 1451 and passed away in 1506. Columbus’s parents’ names were Domenico and Susanna Fontanarossa. Columbus was married to Filipa Moniz Perestrelo in 1479. He had two sons named Diego Columbus and Ferdinand Columbus. Many people believe that Columbus was a great explorer and did so much good, but following the discovery of American, Columbus committed various heinous acts including, having slaves, murdering innocent people, and selling girls.

To begin, Christopher Columbus went on numerous voyages in 1492, 1493, 1498, and 1502. Columbus’s intentions to going out on these four voyages was to find gold, achieve glory, and to spread religion. Before Columbus’s voyages he worked as a trader and learned how to make maps and navigate ships. In 1492 Columbus set out on his three boats, the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria, to find a water route to Asia. His intention to going to Asia was to get gold, pearls, and spice. Columbus’s men threatened to rebel and wanted to turn back around because the voyage turned out to be extremely long and difficult, Columbus had promised his men that they would turn around if they did not find any land within two days. According to Columbus’s journal he had no motive to turn back around. After Columbus’s voyage in 1492 he set out to make three more voyages after that. He explored more of the Caribbean and he saw “mainland America” during his voyages.

Furthermore, Columbus did extremely awful things. Columbus and his men enslaved native citizens of the West Indies. Columbus and his men would force those people to convert to Christianity. Columbus wrote in his journal, “with fifty men they can all be subjugated and made to do what is required of them.” Columbus then sent back large number of natives to be sold as slaves. To add on to this Columbus also sold sex slaves to his men, some as young as nine years old. Columbus was known as “the father of the slave trade.” Columbus kidnapped “savages” and took them to his ship where he interrogated them on what the island had. When he found his traces of gold, he kept them prisoned and sailed on. In the Dominican Republic he killed some natives and took more prisoners. Columbus captured 1,500 Arawak men, women, and children and selected the 500 healthiest out of all of them, and loaded them on his ships. 200 died on the way to Spain. On top of having slaves, murdering people, and selling sex slaves to his men he also chopped Indian’s hands off!

All in all, the negative things that Columbus did overpowered the good. Even though Columbus did so much bad he still has a holiday named after him celebrated on October 12th, which many people think we should not celebrate. Christopher Columbus was a phenomenal explorer who made many great discoveries, but he also enslaved many native citizens, murdered innocent people, cut Indian’s hands off, and sold sex slave to his men.

Works Cited

  • Biography. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.biography.com/video/christopher-columbus-slave-maker-2261130546
  • Brockell, G. (2019). The Washington Post. Retrieved from https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2019/10/14/here-are-indigenous-people-christopher-columbus-his-men-could-not-annihilate/
  • Ducksters. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.ducksters.com/biography/explorers/christopher_columbus.php
  • Editors, H. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.history.com/news/columbus-day-controversy
  • Morgan, E. S. (2009). Retrieved from https://www.smithsonianmag.com/travel/columbus-confusion-about-the-new-world-140132422/  
07 July 2022
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