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Columbus Day

Columbus Day

Many countries in the New World and elsewhere celebrate the anniversary of Christopher Columbus's arrival in the Americas, which occurred on October 12, 1492, as an official holiday.


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Megan Mockler

Megan Mockler

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Columbus Day is known among Latinos as El Dia de la Raza, meaning, "the Day of the Races," "or the day celebrating the union in the Americas of two racial groups: the Spanish and the Amerindians. Among Mexican Americans in contemporary society, la raza means "the people," that is, the Chicanos, and is an expression of solidarity. Columbus Day is an official holiday throughout Latin America, Spain, and Latino America, and Latinos celebrate it with much fanfare.

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Source:  Offline Book/Journal

The voyage of Christopher Columbus and his diminutive fleet toward the unknown west was not only a prelude to a new historical era. For the brave navigator it was the culmination of years of bold speculation, careful preparation, and struggle against opponents who had belittled his great plan and thwarted its execution. Expounding the strange doctrine that beyond the ocean stood solid, habitable earth, Columbus had first to make his views plausible to his doubting patrons and then to overcome the seemingly endless array of obstacles with which men of little minds barred the way to the fitting out of a fleet. Even when the three small ships were well away on their epoch-making course the crews mutinied and demanded that he turn back. Columbus, however, held to his course and on the morning of October 12, 1492, the welcome land was sighted.

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Source: Franklin D. Roosevelt: St...

Resistance to Columbus Day celebrations is often associated with the rise of radical political groups such as the American Indian Movement, which in 1989 pressured South Dakota to designate the second Monday in October as Native American Day. However, the resistance is much more broadly based; a number of communities, many of them university towns, have adopted alternative Indigenous People's Day celebrations.

Article:   Culture Wars: An Encyclop…
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He visited other islands in search of gold. The Santa Maria wrecked on a coral reef and Columbus had to leave without it. Columbus returned to Spain and forced some Indians to join him. He returned three more times, all voyages being unsuccessful in reaching the Indies. Columbus never saw the United States and he never thought he had found a new world, but he is still honored in America by celebrating Columbus Day on October 12, the day of his first landing in 1492.

Article: Lesson Plan - Columbus Da...
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What Columbus encountered over half a millennia ago was more than earth or continent. His epic quest into the unknown may not have revealed the new trade route he sought, but it exposed the boundless potential of a new frontier. It is this intrepid character and spirit of possibility that has come to define America, and is the reason countless families still journey to our shores. In commemoration of Christopher Columbus' historic voyage 518 years ago, the Congress, by joint resolution of April 30, 1934, and modified in 1968 (36 U.S.C. 107), as amended, has requested the President proclaim the second Monday of October of each year as "Columbus Day."

Article: Presidential Proclamation...
Source: The White House

Columbus Day has been an autumn celebration in the United States since the early nineteenth century and was declared a national holiday in 1937. Traditionally set for October 12, it has been celebrated since 1971 on the second Monday in October, commemorating the voyage of Christopher Columbus to the American continent in 1492. As public consciousness began to be raised regarding European colonial history, the landing of Columbus came to be seen by many less as a symbol of the noble human spirit of exploration than as the initial step in the European conquest and exploration of the Americas. It seemed increasingly incongruous to criticize the brutalities of European colonial history while continuing to celebrate the arrival of Columbus on American shores.

Article:   Culture Wars: An Encyclop…
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On August 3, 1492, Columbus and his ships headed westward. Along the journey, the sailors began to be frightened. On October 10, they demanded that Columbus go back to Spain. To stop the tyranny, Columbus said that if they didn't sight land within two days, they would turn around. Two days later, they saw birds and Columbus changed his direction to follow the birds. At 2:00 A.M., the morning of October 12, 1492, a sailor named Rodrigo de Triana on the Pinta sighted land.

Article: Lesson Plan - Columbus Da...
Source: Lesson Plan - Columbus Da...

Columbus Day was first celebrated on October 12, 1792 to honor the day Christopher Columbus landed in the Bahamas in 1492. One hundred years later, it was celebrated again at the urging of President Benjamin Harrison. Since 1920, it has been celebrated annually and, in 1971, became a federal legal holiday to be celebrated on the second Monday in October. The traditional Columbus Day in the United States includes a parade down New York's Fifth Avenue. Parades and pageantry are often featured in smaller towns and cities. In recent years, the holiday has been rejected by many people who view it as a celebration of conquest and genocide. In its place, Indigenous Peoples Day is celebrated.

Article: Columbus Day (United Stat...
Source: Diversity Calendar: Colu...

Columbus Day is a celebrated on the second Monday in October. The day commemorates October 12, 1492, when Italian navigator Christopher Columbus landed in the New World. The holiday was first proclaimed in 1937 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Article: American Holidays | USA.g...

Columbus Day is a U.S. holiday that commemorates the landing of Christopher Columbus in the New World on October 12, 1492. It was unofficially celebrated in a number of cities and states as early as the 18th century but did not become a federal holiday until the 1937. For many, the holiday is a way of both honoring Columbus' achievements and celebrating Italian-American heritage. Throughout its history, Columbus Day and the man who inspired it have generated controversy, and many alternatives to the holiday have appeared in recent years.

Article: Columbus Day
Source: History