- Columbus Day, which is annually on the second Monday of October, remembers Christopher Columbus‘ arrival to the Americas on October 12, 1492.
- Instead of landing in the Indies, Columbus landed at what is now the Caribbean Islands; called Guanahani by the Indians and deemed San Salvador by Columbus. Columbus, however, believed he had reached Asia. He died in 1506 still believing he had found a route to the New World.
- Columbus was searching for a new route that would allow ships to bring spices from Asia to Europe.
- He sailed with a 90 man crew on three ships which were called the Santa Maria, the Nina, and the Pinta. They sailed for two long months that were filled with sickness, famine, and exhaustion.
- The first commemoration of Columbus took place in 1792
- Many people do not like this holiday, because the European settlement in the Americas led to the destruction of the history and culture of the people that were native to these lands.
- In 1866, the Italian population of New York organized a celebration of the discovery of America.
- In 1892, President Benjamin Harrison proclaimed the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ landing.
- In 1937, every October 12 was proclaimed as “Columbus Day” by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
- In 1968, Columbus Day was declared a federal public holiday on the second Monday in October by President Lyndon B. Johnson, however, 22 states don’t celebrate Columbus Day.
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