The Second Voyage of Christopher Columbus

Second Voyage Adds Colonization and Trading Posts to Exploration Goals

Preparations for the Second Voyage

Dominica, guadalupe and the antilles, hispaniola and the fate of la navidad, cuba and jamaica, columbus as governor, the start of the enslaved indigenous peoples trade, people of note in columbus’ second voyage, historical importance of the second voyage.

  • Ph.D., Spanish, Ohio State University
  • M.A., Spanish, University of Montana
  • B.A., Spanish, Penn State University

Christopher Columbus returned from his first voyage in March 1493, having discovered the New World—although he didn’t know it. He still believed that he had found some uncharted islands near Japan or China and that further exploration was needed. His first voyage had been a bit of a fiasco, as he had lost one of the three ships entrusted to him and he did not bring back much in the way of gold or other valuable items. He did, however, bring back a group of Indigenous people he had enslaved on the island of Hispaniola, and he was able to convince the Spanish crown to finance the second voyage of discovery and colonization.

The second voyage was to be a large-scale colonization and exploration project. Columbus was given 17 ships and over 1,000 men. Included on this voyage, for the first time, were European domesticated animals such as pigs, horses, and cattle. Columbus’ orders were to expand the settlement on Hispaniola, convert the population of Indigenous people to Christianity, establish a trading post, and continue his explorations in search of China or Japan. The fleet set sail on October 13, 1493, and made excellent time, first sighting land on November 3.

The island first sighted was named Dominica by Columbus, a name it retains to this day. Columbus and some of his men visited the island, but it was inhabited by fierce Caribs and they did not stay very long. Moving on, they discovered and explored a number of small islands, including Guadalupe, Montserrat, Redondo, Antigua, and several others in the Leeward Islands and Lesser Antilles chains. He also visited Puerto Rico before making his way back to Hispaniola.

Columbus had wrecked one of his three ships the year of his first voyage. He had been forced to leave 39 of his men behind on Hispaniola, in a small settlement named La Navidad . Upon returning to the island, Columbus discovered that the men he left had raped Indigenous women and angered the population. Indigenous people had then attacked the settlement, slaughtering the Europeans to the last man. Columbus, consulting his Indigenous chieftain ally Guacanagarí, laid the blame on Caonabo, a rival chief. Columbus and his men attacked, routing Caonabo and capturing and enslaving many of the people.

Columbus founded the town of Isabella on the northern coast of Hispaniola, and spent the next five months or so getting the settlement established and exploring the island. Building a town in a steamy land with inadequate provisions is hard work, and many of the men became sick and died. It reached the point where a group of settlers, led by Bernal de Pisa, attempted to capture and make off with several ships and go back to Spain: Columbus learned of the revolt and punished the plotters. The settlement of Isabella remained but never thrived. It was abandoned in 1496 in favor of a new site, now Santo Domingo .

Columbus left the settlement of Isabella in the hands of his brother Diego in April, setting out to explore the region further. He reached Cuba (which he had discovered on his first voyage) on April 30 and explored it for several days before moving on to Jamaica on May 5. He spent the next few weeks exploring the treacherous shoals around Cuba and searching in vain for the mainland. Discouraged, he returned to Isabella on August 20, 1494.

Columbus had been appointed governor and Viceroy of the new lands by the Spanish crown, and for the next year and a half, he attempted to do his job. Unfortunately, Columbus was a good ship’s captain but a lousy administrator, and those colonists that still survived grew to hate him. The gold they had been promised never materialized and Columbus kept most of what little wealth was found for himself. Supplies began running out, and in March of 1496 Columbus returned to Spain to ask for more resources to keep the struggling colony alive.

Columbus brought back many enslaved Indigenous people with him. Columbus, who had once again promised gold and trade routes, did not want to return to Spain empty-handed. Queen Isabella , appalled, decreed that the New World Indigenous people were subjects of the Spanish crown and therefore could not be enslaved. However, the practice of enslaving Indigenous populations continued.

  • Ramón Pané was a Catalan priest who lived among the Taíno people for about four years and produced a short but very important ethnographic history of their culture.
  • Francisco de Las Casas was an adventurer whose son Bartolomé was destined to become very important in the fight for the rights of Indigenous people.
  • Diego Velázquez was a conquistador who later became governor of Cuba.
  • Juan de la Cosa was an explorer and cartographer who produced several important early maps of the Americas.
  • Juan Ponce de León would become governor of Puerto Rico but was most famous for his journey to Florida in search of the Fountain of Youth .

Columbus’ second voyage marked the start of colonialism in the New World, the social importance of which cannot be overstated. By establishing a permanent foothold, Spain took the first steps toward its mighty empire of the centuries that followed, an empire that was built with New World gold and silver.

When Columbus brought back enslaved Indigenous peoples to Spain, he also caused the question of whether to practice enslavement in the New World to be aired openly, and Queen Isabella decided that her new subjects could not be enslaved. But although Isabella perhaps prevented a few instances of enslavement, the conquest and colonization of the New World was devastating and deadly for Indigenous peoples: their population dropped by approximately 80% between 1492 and the mid-17th century. The drop was caused mainly by the arrival of Old World diseases, but others died as a result of violent conflict or enslavement.

Many of those who sailed with Columbus on his second voyage went on to play very important roles in the trajectory of history in the New World. These first colonists had a significant amount of influence and power over the span of the next few decades.

  • Herring, Hubert. A History of Latin America From the Beginnings to the Present . New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1962.
  • Thomas, Hugh. "Rivers of Gold: The Rise of the Spanish Empire, from Columbus to Magellan." Hardcover, 1st edition, Random House, June 1, 2004.
  • The Third Voyage of Christopher Columbus
  • Biography of Christopher Columbus
  • 10 Facts About Christopher Columbus
  • The Truth About Christopher Columbus
  • Biography of Christopher Columbus, Italian Explorer
  • La Navidad: First European Settlement in the Americas
  • The First New World Voyage of Christopher Columbus (1492)
  • Biography of Juan Ponce de León, Conquistador
  • The Fourth Voyage of Christopher Columbus
  • Biography of Bartolomé de Las Casas, Spanish Colonist
  • Biography of Diego Velazquez de Cuellar, Conquistador
  • Where Are the Remains of Christopher Columbus?
  • The Florida Expeditions of Ponce de Leon
  • The Controversy Over Columbus Day Celebrations
  • The History of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Christopher Columbus - 2nd Voyage

Columbus left from Cádiz in Spain for his second voyage (1493-1496) on September 24, 1493, with 17 ships and about 1200 men. His aim was to conquer the Taíno tribe and colonise the region. On October 13, the ships left the Canary Islands, following a more southerly course than on his first voyage. The actual course between Hierro and his landfall point is 252° true. Since the fleet was sailing WSW (258°.8 magnetic), we know that the average magnetic variation during the voyage was about 7° west.

Unlike the low key first voyage, the second voyage was a massive logistic effort. The second voyage brought European livestock (horses, sheep, and cattle) and settlers to America for the first time.

Although Columbus kept a log of his second voyage, only very small fragments survive. Most of what we know comes from indirect references or from accounts of others on the voyage.

Columbus hoped to make landfall at Hispaniola (where he had left 40 men the previous January). He sighted land in the West Indies at dawn on Sunday, November 3. The transatlantic passage of only 21 days was remarkably fast.

He named the island he saw Dominica. On the same day, he landed at Marie-Galante. After sailing past Les Saintes (Todos los Santos), he arrived at Guadaloupe, which he explored between November 4 and November 10, 1493. He then ran north namimg several islands - Montserrat (Santa Maria de Monstserrate), Antigua (Santa Maria la Antigua), Redonda (Santa Maria la Redonda), Nevis (Santa María de las Nieves), Saint Kitts (San Jorge), Sint Eustatius (Santa Anastasia), Saba (San Cristobal), Saint Martin (San Martin), and Saint Croix (Santa Cruz). He also sighted the Virgin Islands, which he named Santa Ursula y las Once Mil Virgines, and the islands of Virgin Gorda, Tortola, and Peter Island (San Pedro).

He landed at Puerto Rico (San Juan Bautista) on November 19, 1493. On November 22, he reached Hispaniola, where he found his colonists had fought with natives and had been killed. He established a new settlement at Isabella, on the north coast of Hispaniola where gold had first been found, but it was a poor location, and the settlement was short-lived. He explored the interior of the island for gold, and established a small fort in the interior. Columbus then set off from Isabela with three ships, in an effort to find the mainland of China, which he was still convinced must be nearby. He reached Cuba on April 30 and sailed along its southern coast. Columbus left Cuba on May 3rd, and anchored at Jamaica two days later. The Indians here were hostile, and since he had still not found the mainland, he left Jamaica on May 13, returning to Cuba the following day. He explored the south coast of Cuba and several nearby islands, including the Isle of Youth (La Evangelista), before returning to Hispaniola on August 20.

But by the end of September, Columbus was seriously ill. His crew abandoned further explorations and returned to the colony at La Isabela. He sent a letter to the monarchs in Spain proposing to enslave some of the native peoples, specifically the Caribs. Although his petition was refused by the Crown, in February 1495 Columbus took 1600 Arawak as slaves. 560 slaves were shipped to Spain; 200 died en route, probably of disease. After legal proceedings, the survivors were released and ordered to be shipped home. Others of the 1600 were kept as slaves for the settlers in the Americas.

Soon after the settlement was made at Isabella the colonists began to complain that the amount of gold had been vastly exaggerated. Further the Spanish suffered from the unhealthiness of the climate. Columbus himself suffered considerably from ill-health. Isabella with its fifteen hundred Spanish immigrants was the most populous settlement. And for the protection of the colonists Columbus built in the interior a little fort called Santo Tomas.

At Isabella there was grumbling against the admiral, in which the Benedictine Father Buil (Boil) and the other priests joined. In the interior there was trouble with the natives. The commander at Santo Tomas, Pedro Margarite, was accused of cruelty to the Indians, but Columbus himself in his Memorial of 30 January, 1494, commends the conduct of that officer. He had to send him reinforcements, which were commanded by Alonzo de Ojeda.

Unable to ascertain the true state of affairs in the Indies, the sovereigns decided to send a special commissioner to investigate and report. They chose Juan de Aguado who had gone with Columbus on his first voyage and with whom he had always been on friendly terms. Aguado arrived at Isabella in October, 1495, while Columbus was absent on a journey of exploration across the island.

As supplies brought from Spain dwindled, Columbus decided to return to Spain to ask for more help in establishing the colony. So he fitted out two ships, one for himself and one for Aguado, placing in them two hundred dissatisfied colonists, a captive Indian chief (who died on the voyage), and thirty Indian prisoners, and set sail for Spain on 10 March, 1496, leaving his brother Bartholomew at Isabella as temporary governor. Columbus reached Cadiz 11 June, 1496.

Translated original Log of Voyage 2

Christopher Columbus 1492 till his death

columbus 2nd voyage

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Christopher Columbus

By: Editors

Updated: August 11, 2023 | Original: November 9, 2009

Christopher Columbus

The explorer Christopher Columbus made four trips across the Atlantic Ocean from Spain: in 1492, 1493, 1498 and 1502. He was determined to find a direct water route west from Europe to Asia, but he never did. Instead, he stumbled upon the Americas. Though he did not “discover” the so-called New World—millions of people already lived there—his journeys marked the beginning of centuries of exploration and colonization of North and South America.

Christopher Columbus and the Age of Discovery

During the 15th and 16th centuries, leaders of several European nations sponsored expeditions abroad in the hope that explorers would find great wealth and vast undiscovered lands. The Portuguese were the earliest participants in this “ Age of Discovery ,” also known as “ Age of Exploration .”

Starting in about 1420, small Portuguese ships known as caravels zipped along the African coast, carrying spices, gold and other goods as well as enslaved people from Asia and Africa to Europe.

Did you know? Christopher Columbus was not the first person to propose that a person could reach Asia by sailing west from Europe. In fact, scholars argue that the idea is almost as old as the idea that the Earth is round. (That is, it dates back to early Rome.)

Other European nations, particularly Spain, were eager to share in the seemingly limitless riches of the “Far East.” By the end of the 15th century, Spain’s “ Reconquista ”—the expulsion of Jews and Muslims out of the kingdom after centuries of war—was complete, and the nation turned its attention to exploration and conquest in other areas of the world.

Early Life and Nationality 

Christopher Columbus, the son of a wool merchant, is believed to have been born in Genoa, Italy, in 1451. When he was still a teenager, he got a job on a merchant ship. He remained at sea until 1476, when pirates attacked his ship as it sailed north along the Portuguese coast.

The boat sank, but the young Columbus floated to shore on a scrap of wood and made his way to Lisbon, where he eventually studied mathematics, astronomy, cartography and navigation. He also began to hatch the plan that would change the world forever.

Christopher Columbus' First Voyage

At the end of the 15th century, it was nearly impossible to reach Asia from Europe by land. The route was long and arduous, and encounters with hostile armies were difficult to avoid. Portuguese explorers solved this problem by taking to the sea: They sailed south along the West African coast and around the Cape of Good Hope.

But Columbus had a different idea: Why not sail west across the Atlantic instead of around the massive African continent? The young navigator’s logic was sound, but his math was faulty. He argued (incorrectly) that the circumference of the Earth was much smaller than his contemporaries believed it was; accordingly, he believed that the journey by boat from Europe to Asia should be not only possible, but comparatively easy via an as-yet undiscovered Northwest Passage . 

He presented his plan to officials in Portugal and England, but it was not until 1492 that he found a sympathetic audience: the Spanish monarchs Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castile .

Columbus wanted fame and fortune. Ferdinand and Isabella wanted the same, along with the opportunity to export Catholicism to lands across the globe. (Columbus, a devout Catholic, was equally enthusiastic about this possibility.)

Columbus’ contract with the Spanish rulers promised that he could keep 10 percent of whatever riches he found, along with a noble title and the governorship of any lands he should encounter.

Where Did Columbus' Ships, Niña, Pinta and Santa Maria, Land?

On August 3, 1492, Columbus and his crew set sail from Spain in three ships: the Niña , the Pinta and the Santa Maria . On October 12, the ships made landfall—not in the East Indies, as Columbus assumed, but on one of the Bahamian islands, likely San Salvador.

For months, Columbus sailed from island to island in what we now know as the Caribbean, looking for the “pearls, precious stones, gold, silver, spices, and other objects and merchandise whatsoever” that he had promised to his Spanish patrons, but he did not find much. In January 1493, leaving several dozen men behind in a makeshift settlement on Hispaniola (present-day Haiti and the Dominican Republic), he left for Spain.

He kept a detailed diary during his first voyage. Christopher Columbus’s journal was written between August 3, 1492, and November 6, 1492 and mentions everything from the wildlife he encountered, like dolphins and birds, to the weather to the moods of his crew. More troublingly, it also recorded his initial impressions of the local people and his argument for why they should be enslaved.

“They… brought us parrots and balls of cotton and spears and many other things, which they exchanged for the glass beads and hawks’ bells," he wrote. "They willingly traded everything they owned… They were well-built, with good bodies and handsome features… They do not bear arms, and do not know them, for I showed them a sword, they took it by the edge and cut themselves out of ignorance. They have no iron… They would make fine servants… With fifty men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want.”

Columbus gifted the journal to Isabella upon his return.

Christopher Columbus's Later Voyages

About six months later, in September 1493, Columbus returned to the Americas. He found the Hispaniola settlement destroyed and left his brothers Bartolomeo and Diego Columbus behind to rebuild, along with part of his ships’ crew and hundreds of enslaved indigenous people.

Then he headed west to continue his mostly fruitless search for gold and other goods. His group now included a large number of indigenous people the Europeans had enslaved. In lieu of the material riches he had promised the Spanish monarchs, he sent some 500 enslaved people to Queen Isabella. The queen was horrified—she believed that any people Columbus “discovered” were Spanish subjects who could not be enslaved—and she promptly and sternly returned the explorer’s gift.

In May 1498, Columbus sailed west across the Atlantic for the third time. He visited Trinidad and the South American mainland before returning to the ill-fated Hispaniola settlement, where the colonists had staged a bloody revolt against the Columbus brothers’ mismanagement and brutality. Conditions were so bad that Spanish authorities had to send a new governor to take over.

Meanwhile, the native Taino population, forced to search for gold and to work on plantations, was decimated (within 60 years after Columbus landed, only a few hundred of what may have been 250,000 Taino were left on their island). Christopher Columbus was arrested and returned to Spain in chains.

In 1502, cleared of the most serious charges but stripped of his noble titles, the aging Columbus persuaded the Spanish crown to pay for one last trip across the Atlantic. This time, Columbus made it all the way to Panama—just miles from the Pacific Ocean—where he had to abandon two of his four ships after damage from storms and hostile natives. Empty-handed, the explorer returned to Spain, where he died in 1506.

Legacy of Christopher Columbus

Christopher Columbus did not “discover” the Americas, nor was he even the first European to visit the “New World.” (Viking explorer Leif Erikson had sailed to Greenland and Newfoundland in the 11th century.)

However, his journey kicked off centuries of exploration and exploitation on the American continents. The Columbian Exchange transferred people, animals, food and disease across cultures. Old World wheat became an American food staple. African coffee and Asian sugar cane became cash crops for Latin America, while American foods like corn, tomatoes and potatoes were introduced into European diets. 

Today, Columbus has a controversial legacy —he is remembered as a daring and path-breaking explorer who transformed the New World, yet his actions also unleashed changes that would eventually devastate the native populations he and his fellow explorers encountered.

columbus 2nd voyage

HISTORY Vault: Columbus the Lost Voyage

Ten years after his 1492 voyage, Columbus, awaiting the gallows on criminal charges in a Caribbean prison, plotted a treacherous final voyage to restore his reputation.

columbus 2nd voyage

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The Second Voyage of Columbus

columbus 2nd voyage

On his second voyage to the New World, Columbus commanded a sizable fleet of 17 ships. The expedition's primary objective was to explore and settle the new lands Columbus had discovered. Another significant goal was to Christianize any natives they encountered. On November 3rd, 1493, the expedition made its first landfall on an island that Columbus named "Dominica". However, chroniclers of the voyage suggested that the islands might not have been the paradise Columbus had described. Dr. Chanca penned a detailed letter to the municipal council of Seville about the voyage. In it, he described the Caribs, whom he referred to as "bestial". Chanca detailed that "these people raid other islands and abduct women, especially the young and beautiful ones, to keep as servants and concubines. So many were taken that in fifty houses no males were found, and among the captives, more than twenty were women."

During this voyage, Columbus explored Guadeloupe, Antigua, and Saint Croix, and also landed on Puerto Rico. Upon his return to Hispaniola, he found that all the Europeans he had left behind during his previous voyage had either died or been killed. Establishing a new settlement, Columbus scoured Hispaniola for gold and enslaved natives. He then requested additional supplies from Spain, which were sent to him. His governance of the new colony and his treatment of the natives drew widespread criticism. A royal commission was subsequently appointed to investigate the allegations against Columbus. After appointing his brother Bartolome as the governor, Columbus returned to Spain, arriving on June 11, 1496

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The Ages of Exploration

Christopher columbus, age of discovery.

Quick Facts:

He is credited for discovering the Americas in 1492, although we know today people were there long before him; his real achievement was that he opened the door for more exploration to a New World.

Name : Christopher Columbus [Kri-stə-fər] [Kə-luhm-bəs]

Birth/Death : 1451 - 1506

Nationality : Italian

Birthplace : Genoa, Italy

Christopher Columbus aboard the "Santa Maria" leaving Palos, Spain on his first voyage across the Atlantic Ocean. The Mariners' Museum 1933.0746.000001

Christopher Columbus leaving Palos, Spain

Christopher Columbus aboard the "Santa Maria" leaving Palos, Spain on his first voyage across the Atlantic Ocean. The Mariners' Museum 1933.0746.000001

Introduction We know that In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue. But what did he actually discover? Christopher Columbus (also known as (Cristoforo Colombo [Italian]; Cristóbal Colón [Spanish]) was an Italian explorer credited with the “discovery” of the America’s. The purpose for his voyages was to find a passage to Asia by sailing west. Never actually accomplishing this mission, his explorations mostly included the Caribbean and parts of Central and South America, all of which were already inhabited by Native groups.

Biography Early Life Christopher Columbus was born in Genoa, part of present-day Italy, in 1451. His parents’ names were Dominico Colombo and Susanna Fontanarossa. He had three brothers: Bartholomew, Giovanni, and Giacomo; and a sister named Bianchinetta. Christopher became an apprentice in his father’s wool weaving business, but he also studied mapmaking and sailing as well. He eventually left his father’s business to join the Genoese fleet and sail on the Mediterranean Sea. 1 After one of his ships wrecked off the coast of Portugal, he decided to remain there with his younger brother Bartholomew where he worked as a cartographer (mapmaker) and bookseller. Here, he married Doña Felipa Perestrello e Moniz and had two sons Diego and Fernando.

Christopher Columbus owned a copy of Marco Polo’s famous book, and it gave him a love for exploration. In the mid 15th century, Portugal was desperately trying to find a faster trade route to Asia. Exotic goods such as spices, ivory, silk, and gems were popular items of trade. However, Europeans often had to travel through the Middle East to reach Asia. At this time, Muslim nations imposed high taxes on European travels crossing through. 2 This made it both difficult and expensive to reach Asia. There were rumors from other sailors that Asia could be reached by sailing west. Hearing this, Christopher Columbus decided to try and make this revolutionary journey himself. First, he needed ships and supplies, which required money that he did not have. He went to King John of Portugal who turned him down. He then went to the rulers of England, and France. Each declined his request for funding. After seven years of trying, he was finally sponsored by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain.

Voyages Principal Voyage Columbus’ voyage departed in August of 1492 with 87 men sailing on three ships: the Niña, the Pinta, and the Santa María. Columbus commanded the Santa María, while the Niña was led by Vicente Yanez Pinzon and the Pinta by Martin Pinzon. 3 This was the first of his four trips. He headed west from Spain across the Atlantic Ocean. On October 12 land was sighted. He gave the first island he landed on the name San Salvador, although the native population called it Guanahani. 4 Columbus believed that he was in Asia, but was actually in the Caribbean. He even proposed that the island of Cuba was a part of China. Since he thought he was in the Indies, he called the native people “Indians.” In several letters he wrote back to Spain, he described the landscape and his encounters with the natives. He continued sailing throughout the Caribbean and named many islands he encountered after his ship, king, and queen: La Isla de Santa María de Concepción, Fernandina, and Isabella.

It is hard to determine specifically which islands Columbus visited on this voyage. His descriptions of the native peoples, geography, and plant life do give us some clues though. One place we do know he stopped was in present-day Haiti. He named the island Hispaniola. Hispaniola today includes both Haiti and the Dominican Republic. In January of 1493, Columbus sailed back to Europe to report what he found. Due to rough seas, he was forced to land in Portugal, an unfortunate event for Columbus. With relations between Spain and Portugal strained during this time, Ferdinand and Isabella suspected that Columbus was taking valuable information or maybe goods to Portugal, the country he had lived in for several years. Those who stood against Columbus would later use this as an argument against him. Eventually, Columbus was allowed to return to Spain bringing with him tobacco, turkey, and some new spices. He also brought with him several natives of the islands, of whom Queen Isabella grew very fond.

Subsequent Voyages Columbus took three other similar trips to this region. His second voyage in 1493 carried a large fleet with the intention of conquering the native populations and establishing colonies. At one point, the natives attacked and killed the settlers left at Fort Navidad. Over time the colonists enslaved many of the natives, sending some to Europe and using many to mine gold for the Spanish settlers in the Caribbean. The third trip was to explore more of the islands and mainland South America further. Columbus was appointed the governor of Hispaniola, but the colonists, upset with Columbus’ leadership appealed to the rulers of Spain, who sent a new governor: Francisco de Bobadilla. Columbus was taken prisoner on board a ship and sent back to Spain.

On his fourth and final journey west in 1502 Columbus’s goal was to find the “Strait of Malacca,” to try to find India. But a hurricane, then being denied entrance to Hispaniola, and then another storm made this an unfortunate trip. His ship was so badly damaged that he and his crew were stranded on Jamaica for two years until help from Hispaniola finally arrived. In 1504, Columbus and his men were taken back to Spain .

Later Years and Death Columbus reached Spain in November 1504. He was not in good health. He spent much of the last of his life writing letters to obtain the percentage of wealth overdue to be paid to him, and trying to re-attain his governorship status, but was continually denied both. Columbus died at Valladolid on May 20, 1506, due to illness and old age. Even until death, he still firmly believing that he had traveled to the eastern part of Asia.

Legacy Columbus never made it to Asia, nor did he truly discover America. His “re-discovery,” however, inspired a new era of exploration of the American continents by Europeans. Perhaps his greatest contribution was that his voyages opened an exchange of goods between Europe and the Americas both during and long after his journeys. 5 Despite modern criticism of his treatment of the native peoples there is no denying that his expeditions changed both Europe and America. Columbus day was made a federal holiday in 1971. It is recognized on the second Monday of October.

  • Fergus Fleming, Off the Map: Tales of Endurance and Exploration (New York: Grove Press, 2004), 30.
  • Fleming, Off the Map , 30
  • William D. Phillips and Carla Rahn Phillips, The Worlds of Christopher Columbus (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1993), 142-143.
  • Phillips and Phillips, The Worlds of Christopher Columbus , 155.
  • Robin S. Doak, Christopher Columbus: Explorer of the New World (Minneapolis: Compass Point Books, 2005), 92.


Doak, Robin. Christopher Columbus: Explorer of the New World . Minneapolis: Compass Point Books, 2005.

Fleming, Fergus. Off the Map: Tales of Endurance and Exploration . New York: Grove Press, 2004.

Phillips, William D., and Carla Rahn Phillips. The Worlds of Christopher Columbus . New York: Cambridge University Press, 1993.

Christopher Columbus at the Court of Queen Isabella II of Spain who funded his New World journey. The Mariners' Museum 1950.0315.000001

Map of Voyages

Click below to view an example of the explorer’s voyages. Use the tabs on the left to view either 1 or multiple journeys at a time, and click on the icons to learn more about the stops, sites, and activities along the way.

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The Second Voyage of Columbus

After the success of Columbus's first voyage, he had little trouble convincing the Spanish Sovereigns, Ferdinand and Isabela, to follow up immediately with a second voyage. Unlike the exploratory first voyage, the second voyage was a massive colonization effort, comprising seventeen ships and over a thousand men. The second voyage brought European livestock (horses, sheep, and cattle) to America for the first time.

Although Columbus kept a log of his second voyage, only very small fragments survive. Most of what we know comes from indirect references or from accounts of others on the voyage.

The fleet left Hierro in the Canary Islands on October 13, 1493. Hoping to make a landfall at Hispaniola (where Columbus had left 40 men the previous January), the fleet kept a constant course of west-southwest from Hierro and sighted Dominica in the West Indies at dawn on Sunday, November 3. The transatlantic passage of only 21 days was remarkably fast, covering 850 leagues according to Columbus's reckoning (or somewhat less according to others).

Shortly after sighting Dominica, another island to the north came into view; this must have been Guadeloupe, although some on the voyage later misattributed it as Maria Galante. This order of sighting shows that the fleet must have been very near to 16� north latitude, 60� west longitude at dawn on November 3. A little farther north, and Guadeloupe would have been sighted first; a little farther south, and Martinique would have been sighted second; a little farther west, and all these islands would have been seen simultaneously.

The actual rhumbline course (rhumbline: a course of constant bearing between two points) between Hierro and this point is 252� true. Since the fleet was sailing WSW (258�.8 magnetic), we know that the average magnetic variation during the voyage was about 7� west.

During the next two weeks, the fleet moved north from Dominica, discovering the Leeward Islands, Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico before arriving at Hispaniola on November 22.

Returning to his fortress at Navidad on November 28, Columbus found that the fort had been burned and that the men he had left there on the first voyage were dead. According to the account of Guacanagari, the local chief who had befriended Columbus on the first voyage, the men at Navidad had fallen to arguing among themselves over women and gold. Some of the men had abandonded the fort in the intervening months, and some of the rest had raided an inland tribe and kidnapped their women. The men of that tribe retaliated by destroying Navidad and killing the few remaining Spaniards.

Columbus then sailed eastward along the coast of Hispaniola, looking for a place to found a new colony. On December 8, he anchored at a good spot and founded a new town he named La Isabela, after the Spanish queen. The next several months were spent in establishing the colony and exploring the interior of Hispaniola.

On April 24, 1494, Columbus set sail from Isabela with three ships, in an effort to find the mainland of China, which he was still convinced must be nearby. He reached Cuba on April 30 and cruised along its southern coast. But soon he learned of an island to the south that was rumored to be rich with gold. Columbus left Cuba on May 3rd, and anchored at Jamaica two days later. But the reception he recieved from the Indians was mostly hostile, and since he had still not found the mainland, he left Jamaica on May 13, returning to Cuba the following day.

But the Admiral quickly found that the southern coast of Cuba is dotted with shoals and small islands, making exploration treacherous. Making slow progress in difficult conditions, Columbus press westward for several weeks until finally giving up the quest on June 13. But not wanting to admit that his search for the mainland was a failure, Columbus ordered each man in his crews to sign a document and swear that Cuba was so large that it really must be the mainland.

The voyage back to Hispaniola was even worse, since they now had to rethread the shoals and islands they had come through before, and now they had a headwind to work against. After four weeks, tired of the incessant headwinds, Columbus again turned south for Jamaica and confirmed that it was indeed an island. Columbus finally returned to Hispaniola on August 20, 1494, and proceeded eastward along the unknown southern coast. But by the end of September, Columbus was seriously ill. His crew abandoned further explorations and returned to the colony at La Isabela.

Over the next eighteen months Columbus worked, mostly without success, at his job of colonial governor. His relations with the Spanish colonists were poor. Columbus took his title of Viceroy -- titular King -- seriously, and governed with an arrogance that the colonists did not appreciate. Many of these colonists were younger sons of the Spanish nobility who were trying to carve out their own fiefdoms in the New World, and they viewed Columbus as a foreigner and an impediment to their plans. The large amounts of gold they had been promised turned out to be more of a trickle, and Columbus, acting under royal decree, appropriated a large fraction of that for himself. Further, La Isabela turned out to have been a bad location, in a swampy area with few resources and a poor harbor.

Meanwhile, relations with many of the Indian tribes had soured too, and war soon broke out between the Spaniards and some of the tribes. But the Spanish had a huge technological edge, and the warfare was grossly one-sided. Many Indians were killed, and even more were captured and forced to work at the thankless job of finding gold.

As supplies brought from Spain dwindled, Columbus decided to return to Spain to ask for more help in establishing the colony. He set sail from Isabela on March 10, 1496, with two ships. They sighted the coast of Portugal on June 8, his second voyage complete.

Christopher Columbus

Italian explorer Christopher Columbus discovered the “New World” of the Americas on an expedition sponsored by King Ferdinand of Spain in 1492.

christopher columbus

c. 1451-1506

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Christopher Columbus was an Italian explorer and navigator. In 1492, he sailed across the Atlantic Ocean from Spain in the Santa Maria , with the Pinta and the Niña ships alongside, hoping to find a new route to Asia. Instead, he and his crew landed on an island in present-day Bahamas—claiming it for Spain and mistakenly “discovering” the Americas. Between 1493 and 1504, he made three more voyages to the Caribbean and South America, believing until his death that he had found a shorter route to Asia. Columbus has been credited—and blamed—for opening up the Americas to European colonization.

FULL NAME: Cristoforo Colombo BORN: c. 1451 DIED: May 20, 1506 BIRTHPLACE: Genoa, Italy SPOUSE: Filipa Perestrelo (c. 1479-1484) CHILDREN: Diego and Fernando

Christopher Columbus, whose real name was Cristoforo Colombo, was born in 1451 in the Republic of Genoa, part of what is now Italy. He is believed to have been the son of Dominico Colombo and Susanna Fontanarossa and had four siblings: brothers Bartholomew, Giovanni, and Giacomo, and a sister named Bianchinetta. He was an apprentice in his father’s wool weaving business and studied sailing and mapmaking.

In his 20s, Columbus moved to Lisbon, Portugal, and later resettled in Spain, which remained his home base for the duration of his life.

Columbus first went to sea as a teenager, participating in several trading voyages in the Mediterranean and Aegean seas. One such voyage, to the island of Khios, in modern-day Greece, brought him the closest he would ever come to Asia.

His first voyage into the Atlantic Ocean in 1476 nearly cost him his life, as the commercial fleet he was sailing with was attacked by French privateers off the coast of Portugal. His ship was burned, and Columbus had to swim to the Portuguese shore.

He made his way to Lisbon, where he eventually settled and married Filipa Perestrelo. The couple had one son, Diego, around 1480. His wife died when Diego was a young boy, and Columbus moved to Spain. He had a second son, Fernando, who was born out of wedlock in 1488 with Beatriz Enriquez de Arana.

After participating in several other expeditions to Africa, Columbus learned about the Atlantic currents that flow east and west from the Canary Islands.

The Asian islands near China and India were fabled for their spices and gold, making them an attractive destination for Europeans—but Muslim domination of the trade routes through the Middle East made travel eastward difficult.

Columbus devised a route to sail west across the Atlantic to reach Asia, believing it would be quicker and safer. He estimated the earth to be a sphere and the distance between the Canary Islands and Japan to be about 2,300 miles.

Many of Columbus’ contemporary nautical experts disagreed. They adhered to the (now known to be accurate) second-century BCE estimate of the Earth’s circumference at 25,000 miles, which made the actual distance between the Canary Islands and Japan about 12,200 statute miles. Despite their disagreement with Columbus on matters of distance, they concurred that a westward voyage from Europe would be an uninterrupted water route.

Columbus proposed a three-ship voyage of discovery across the Atlantic first to the Portuguese king, then to Genoa, and finally to Venice. He was rejected each time. In 1486, he went to the Spanish monarchy of Queen Isabella of Castile and Ferdinand II of Aragon. Their focus was on a war with the Muslims, and their nautical experts were skeptical, so they initially rejected Columbus.

The idea, however, must have intrigued the monarchs, because they kept Columbus on a retainer. Columbus continued to lobby the royal court, and soon, the Spanish army captured the last Muslim stronghold in Granada in January 1492. Shortly thereafter, the monarchs agreed to finance his expedition.

In late August 1492, Columbus left Spain from the port of Palos de la Frontera. He was sailing with three ships: Columbus in the larger Santa Maria (a type of ship known as a carrack), with the Pinta and the Niña (both Portuguese-style caravels) alongside.

a drawing showing christopher columbus on one knee and planting a flag after landing on an island

On October 12, 1492, after 36 days of sailing westward across the Atlantic, Columbus and several crewmen set foot on an island in present-day Bahamas, claiming it for Spain.

There, his crew encountered a timid but friendly group of natives who were open to trade with the sailors. They exchanged glass beads, cotton balls, parrots, and spears. The Europeans also noticed bits of gold the natives wore for adornment.

Columbus and his men continued their journey, visiting the islands of Cuba (which he thought was mainland China) and Hispaniola (now Haiti and the Dominican Republic, which Columbus thought might be Japan) and meeting with the leaders of the native population.

During this time, the Santa Maria was wrecked on a reef off the coast of Hispaniola. With the help of some islanders, Columbus’ men salvaged what they could and built the settlement Villa de la Navidad (“Christmas Town”) with lumber from the ship.

Thirty-nine men stayed behind to occupy the settlement. Convinced his exploration had reached Asia, he set sail for home with the two remaining ships. Returning to Spain in 1493, Columbus gave a glowing but somewhat exaggerated report and was warmly received by the royal court.

In 1493, Columbus took to the seas on his second expedition and explored more islands in the Caribbean Ocean. Upon arrival at Hispaniola, Columbus and his crew discovered the Navidad settlement had been destroyed with all the sailors massacred.

Spurning the wishes of the local queen, Columbus established a forced labor policy upon the native population to rebuild the settlement and explore for gold, believing it would be profitable. His efforts produced small amounts of gold and great hatred among the native population.

Before returning to Spain, Columbus left his brothers Bartholomew and Giacomo to govern the settlement on Hispaniola and sailed briefly around the larger Caribbean islands, further convincing himself he had discovered the outer islands of China.

It wasn’t until his third voyage that Columbus actually reached the South American mainland, exploring the Orinoco River in present-day Venezuela. By this time, conditions at the Hispaniola settlement had deteriorated to the point of near-mutiny, with settlers claiming they had been misled by Columbus’ claims of riches and complaining about the poor management of his brothers.

The Spanish Crown sent a royal official who arrested Columbus and stripped him of his authority. He returned to Spain in chains to face the royal court. The charges were later dropped, but Columbus lost his titles as governor of the Indies and, for a time, much of the riches made during his voyages.

After convincing King Ferdinand that one more voyage would bring the abundant riches promised, Columbus went on his fourth and final voyage across the Atlantic Ocean in 1502. This time he traveled along the eastern coast of Central America in an unsuccessful search for a route to the Indian Ocean.

A storm wrecked one of his ships, stranding the captain and his sailors on the island of Cuba. During this time, local islanders, tired of the Spaniards’ poor treatment and obsession with gold, refused to give them food.

In a spark of inspiration, Columbus consulted an almanac and devised a plan to “punish” the islanders by taking away the moon. On February 29, 1504, a lunar eclipse alarmed the natives enough to re-establish trade with the Spaniards. A rescue party finally arrived, sent by the royal governor of Hispaniola in July, and Columbus and his men were taken back to Spain in November 1504.

In the two remaining years of his life, Columbus struggled to recover his reputation. Although he did regain some of his riches in May 1505, his titles were never returned.

Columbus probably died of severe arthritis following an infection on May 20, 1506, in Valladolid, Spain. At the time of his death, he still believed he had discovered a shorter route to Asia.

There are questions about the location of his burial site. According to the BBC , Columbus’ remains moved at least three or four times over the course of 400 years—including from Valladolid to Seville, Spain, in 1509; then to Santo Domingo, in what is now the Dominican Republic, in 1537; then to Havana, Cuba, in 1795; and back to Seville in 1898. As a result, Seville and Santo Domingo have both laid claim to being Columbus’ true burial site. It is also possible his bones were mixed up with another person’s amid all of their travels.

In May 2014, Columbus made headlines as news broke that a team of archaeologists might have found the Santa Maria off the north coast of Haiti. Barry Clifford, the leader of this expedition, told the Independent newspaper that “all geographical, underwater topography and archaeological evidence strongly suggests this wreck is Columbus’ famous flagship the Santa Maria.”

After a thorough investigation by the U.N. agency UNESCO, it was determined the wreck dates from a later period and was located too far from shore to be the famed ship.

Columbus has been credited for opening up the Americas to European colonization—as well as blamed for the destruction of the native peoples of the islands he explored. Ultimately, he failed to find that what he set out for: a new route to Asia and the riches it promised.

In what is known as the Columbian Exchange, Columbus’ expeditions set in motion the widespread transfer of people, plants, animals, diseases, and cultures that greatly affected nearly every society on the planet.

The horse from Europe allowed Native American tribes in the Great Plains of North America to shift from a nomadic to a hunting lifestyle. Wheat from the Old World fast became a main food source for people in the Americas. Coffee from Africa and sugar cane from Asia became major cash crops for Latin American countries. And foods from the Americas, such as potatoes, tomatoes and corn, became staples for Europeans and helped increase their populations.

The Columbian Exchange also brought new diseases to both hemispheres, though the effects were greatest in the Americas. Smallpox from the Old World killed millions, decimating the Native American populations to mere fractions of their original numbers. This more than any other factor allowed for European domination of the Americas.

The overwhelming benefits of the Columbian Exchange went to the Europeans initially and eventually to the rest of the world. The Americas were forever altered, and the once vibrant cultures of the Indigenous civilizations were changed and lost, denying the world any complete understanding of their existence.

two protestors holding their arm in the air in front of a metal statue of christopher columbus

As more Italians began to immigrate to the United States and settle in major cities during the 19 th century, they were subject to religious and ethnic discrimination. This included a mass lynching of 11 Sicilian immigrants in 1891 in New Orleans.

Just one year after this horrific event, President Benjamin Harrison called for the first national observance of Columbus Day on October 12, 1892, to mark the 400 th anniversary of his arrival in the Americas. Italian-Americans saw this honorary act for Columbus as a way of gaining acceptance.

Colorado became the first state to officially observe Columbus Day in 1906 and, within five years, 14 other states followed. Thanks to a joint resolution of Congress, the day officially became a federal holiday in 1934 during the administration of Franklin D. Roosevelt . In 1970, Congress declared the holiday would fall on the second Monday in October each year.

But as Columbus’ legacy—specifically, his exploration’s impacts on Indigenous civilizations—began to draw more criticism, more people chose not to take part. As of 2023, approximately 29 states no longer celebrate Columbus Day , and around 195 cities have renamed it or replaced with the alternative Indigenous Peoples Day. The latter isn’t an official holiday, but the federal government recognized its observance in 2022 and 2023. President Joe Biden called it “a day in honor of our diverse history and the Indigenous peoples who contribute to shaping this nation.”

One of the most notable cities to move away from celebrating Columbus Day in recent years is the state capital of Columbus, Ohio, which is named after the explorer. In 2018, Mayor Andrew Ginther announced the city would remain open on Columbus Day and instead celebrate a holiday on Veterans Day. In July 2020, the city also removed a 20-plus-foot metal statue of Columbus from the front of City Hall.

  • I went to sea from the most tender age and have continued in a sea life to this day. Whoever gives himself up to this art wants to know the secrets of Nature here below. It is more than forty years that I have been thus engaged. Wherever any one has sailed, there I have sailed.
  • Speaking of myself, little profit had I won from twenty years of service, during which I have served with so great labors and perils, for today I have no roof over my head in Castile; if I wish to sleep or eat, I have no place to which to go, save an inn or tavern, and most often, I lack the wherewithal to pay the score.
  • They say that there is in that land an infinite amount of gold; and that the people wear corals on their heads and very large bracelets of coral on their feet and arms; and that with coral they adorn and inlay chairs and chests and tables.
  • This island and all the others are very fertile to a limitless degree, and this island is extremely so. In it there are many harbors on the coast of the sea, beyond comparison with others that I know in Christendom, and many rivers, good and large, which is marvelous.
  • Our Almighty God has shown me the highest favor, which, since David, he has not shown to anybody.
  • Already the road is opened to gold and pearls, and it may surely be hoped that precious stones, spices, and a thousand other things, will also be found.
  • I have now seen so much irregularity, that I have come to another conclusion respecting the earth, namely, that it is not round as they describe, but of the form of a pear.
  • In all the countries visited by your Highnesses’ ships, I have caused a high cross to be fixed upon every headland and have proclaimed, to every nation that I have discovered, the lofty estate of your Highnesses and of your court in Spain.
  • I ought to be judged as a captain sent from Spain to the Indies, to conquer a nation numerous and warlike, with customs and religions altogether different to ours.
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How Did The Second Voyage Of Columbus Differ From The First?

Published: December 14, 2023

Modified: December 28, 2023

by Meade Kinder

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Christopher Columbus, a renowned Italian explorer, embarked on a series of voyages during the late 15th century that would forever change the course of history. His expeditions to the New World opened up vast opportunities for exploration, colonization, and trade, shaping the future of European powers and leaving a lasting impact on the indigenous civilizations he encountered.

In this article, we will examine the differences between Columbus’s first and second voyages, focusing on how the second voyage differed from the initial one. These voyages were not only remarkable for their historical significance but also for the profound impact they had on the world as we know it today.

To understand the nuances of the second voyage, it is important to provide a brief background on Christopher Columbus himself. Born in Genoa, Italy in 1451, Columbus displayed a keen interest in navigation from a young age. Inspired by the desire to find a faster route to Asia, he sought support from various monarchs until Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand of Spain agreed to finance his ambitious voyages.

Columbus’s first voyage, which began on August 3, 1492, aimed to find a westward route to Asia. Departing from Palos de la Frontera, Spain, he sailed across the Atlantic Ocean with three ships: the Santa Maria, the Pinta, and the Niña. After a long and arduous journey, Columbus and his crew finally made landfall in the present-day Bahamas on October 12, 1492, believing they had reached the East Indies.

The first voyage was marked by a sense of uncertainty and discovery. Columbus explored various islands in the Caribbean, including Cuba and Hispaniola, establishing temporary settlements and interacting with the indigenous Taino people. Although the expedition did not achieve its original objective of reaching Asia, it laid the foundation for subsequent voyages and the eventual colonization of the Americas.

Background on Christopher Columbus

Christopher Columbus, born in 1451 in Genoa, Italy, was a skilled navigator and explorer with a burning desire to find a new route to Asia. He grew up in a family of merchants and sailors, which exposed him to the world of navigation and exploration from a young age. Inspired by the tales of Marco Polo and other explorers, Columbus developed a fascination for reaching the lucrative Asian markets by bypassing the traditional land routes.

With a thirst for knowledge and adventure, Columbus honed his navigational skills and gained valuable experience on various voyages across the Mediterranean Sea and along the coasts of Africa. He was deeply influenced by the advancements in technology and cartography of the time, particularly the invention of the compass and astrolabe, which greatly improved navigation accuracy.

Columbus’s ambitious quest to find a westward route to Asia faced countless rejections and setbacks from European monarchs who were skeptical of his audacious proposal. However, his persistence paid off when he secured funding from Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand of Spain in 1492.

Although Columbus’s intentions were driven by visions of wealth and glory, his voyage had far-reaching consequences that he could not have foreseen. His explorations and subsequent discoveries ultimately led to the permanent European colonization of the Americas and the subsequent clash of civilizations.

It is important to acknowledge that Columbus’s expeditions were not without controversy. The arrival of Europeans in the Americas brought about devastating consequences for the indigenous populations, including disease, enslavement, and violence. The Columbus narrative, once celebrated, has been reevaluated and reinterpreted in recent years, highlighting the complex and troubling aspects of his legacy.

Today, Columbus’s voyages serve as a testament to the enduring human spirit of exploration and discovery. They represent a pivotal moment in world history, marking the point of contact between different cultures and the beginning of a new era of international exchange, both beneficial and detrimental.

First Voyage of Christopher Columbus

The first voyage of Christopher Columbus, which commenced on August 3, 1492, is considered a monumental event that would change the course of history. Equipped with three ships – the Santa Maria, the Pinta, and the Niña – Columbus set sail from the Spanish port of Palos de la Frontera in search of a new route to Asia.

Initially, Columbus’s plan was met with skepticism by European monarchs, as many believed he would encounter insurmountable obstacles and fail in his endeavor. However, the Spanish crown decided to take a chance on Columbus’s proposal and provided him with the necessary funding and resources.

The journey across the Atlantic Ocean was arduous and filled with uncertainty. The sailors faced adverse weather conditions, the constant threat of mutiny, and the fear of sailing into uncharted waters. However, Columbus managed to maintain the morale of his crew through his leadership skills and unwavering determination.

After weeks of sailing, on October 12, 1492, land was finally sighted. Columbus and his crew believed they had arrived in the East Indies, unaware that they had actually reached an island in the present-day Bahamas. This discovery marked the first direct contact between Europeans and the indigenous people of the Americas.

As Columbus continued his journey, he explored several islands in the Caribbean, including Cuba and Hispaniola (now Haiti and the Dominican Republic). He encountered various indigenous tribes, such as the Taino people, and established temporary settlements during his exploration.

The first voyage of Columbus was crucial in challenging the prevailing belief in a flat Earth, as he successfully sailed westward across the Atlantic and returned to Spain. His voyage demonstrated that it was indeed possible to reach Asia by sailing west, although he had accidentally stumbled upon the vast continents of the Americas.

While the first voyage did not accomplish its original objective of finding a new trade route to Asia, it paved the way for further exploration and colonization of the Americas by European powers. Columbus had unknowingly opened the door to a new world, forever changing the course of history and reshaping the geopolitical landscape.

Objectives and Results of the First Voyage

The first voyage of Christopher Columbus had specific objectives in mind, rooted in his desire to find a new route to Asia and bring back wealth and prestige to Spain. However, the results of the expedition differed from the initial goals, ultimately setting the stage for a new era of exploration and colonization.

The primary objective of Columbus’s first voyage was to find a westward route to the wealthy markets of Asia, particularly India and China. At the time, the prevailing routes to Asia were lengthy and perilous, often requiring travel through the Mediterranean Sea and the overland Silk Road. Columbus believed that by sailing west, he could bypass these arduous journeys and establish direct trade links with Asia, thereby making Spain a dominant player in global commerce.

However, the first voyage did not achieve its intended goal of reaching Asia. Instead, Columbus and his crew arrived in the Caribbean islands, particularly the Bahamas, which they mistakenly believed were part of Asia. This discovery would have far-reaching consequences, as it marked the beginning of European exploration and colonization in the Western Hemisphere.

The results of the first voyage were significant. Columbus’s arrival in the Americas initiated a process of cultural exchange, both positive and negative. The encounter between Europeans and indigenous peoples led to exchanges of goods, ideas, and diseases, profoundly impacting both sides.

From a European perspective, the discovery of new lands brought excitement and the potential for immense wealth. Although Columbus did not find gold or spices during his first voyage, he returned to Spain with captivating stories of the exotic lands he had encountered. This sparked the interest of other explorers and monarchs, leading to subsequent expeditions aimed at uncovering the riches of the New World.

However, the impact on the indigenous populations of the Americas was devastating. The arrival of Europeans led to the forced labor, enslavement, and disease that decimated native communities. This dark aspect of Columbus’s legacy cannot be overlooked, as it forever altered the demographic and cultural landscape of the Americas.

Despite falling short of its original objectives, the first voyage of Christopher Columbus was a crucial milestone in the exploration of the New World. It set the stage for further voyages and ultimately transformed the balance of power among European nations vying for control and dominance over these newly discovered lands.

Preparations for the Second Voyage

Following the success and mixed results of his first voyage, Christopher Columbus set his sights on a second expedition, eager to continue exploring the newly discovered lands and further his ambitions. Preparations for the second voyage involved careful planning, securing funding, and addressing the challenges encountered during the initial journey.

One of the key challenges Columbus faced was obtaining support and resources for the second voyage. Despite the enthusiasm generated by his initial discoveries, he encountered opposition from rivals and skeptics who questioned the value of his expeditions. However, through his persistence and the patronage of the Spanish monarchs, Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand, Columbus was able to secure funding and gather a crew for the second voyage.

Preparations for the second voyage involved organizing a larger fleet of ships compared to the first voyage. Columbus assembled a fleet of seventeen ships, which included both caravels and carracks. The choice of a larger fleet was strategic, as it allowed for greater exploration and colonization efforts in the newly discovered territories.

In addition to ships, the second voyage required provisioning for the long journey across the Atlantic. Supplies such as food, water, and essential equipment were carefully selected and stowed on board the ships. Columbus also took measures to address the health and well-being of the crew, ensuring that proper medical supplies were available to combat diseases and maintain the crew’s overall health during the voyage.

Another crucial aspect of the preparations was the selection of the crew. For the second voyage, Columbus sought experienced sailors and navigators who could handle the challenges of exploration and manage the larger fleet of ships. Additionally, he enlisted the services of interpreters who had knowledge of indigenous languages, allowing for better communication and interaction with the native populations.

Preparations also extended to diplomatic efforts and negotiations with other European powers. Columbus aimed to secure alliances and support from influential kingdoms to solidify Spain’s dominance in the newly discovered territories. These diplomatic efforts were crucial not only to maintain favorable relations with other nations but also to establish trade networks and secure resources for future expeditions.

Overall, the preparations for the second voyage of Christopher Columbus were more extensive and comprehensive compared to the first. With a larger fleet, carefully selected crew, and provisions for an extended journey, Columbus set out to continue his exploration and solidify Spain’s presence in the New World.

Departure and Route of the Second Voyage

After meticulous preparations, the second voyage of Christopher Columbus finally set sail, aiming to expand upon the discoveries made during the first expedition and further explore the newfound lands. On September 25, 1493, Columbus and his fleet of seventeen ships departed from the Spanish port of Cádiz, marking the beginning of their second transatlantic journey.

The route chosen for the second voyage differed from the first, as Columbus aimed to explore different areas and establish more permanent settlements in the Caribbean. He initially sailed southwest from Spain, heading towards the Canary Islands, where he made a brief stop to restock supplies and make any necessary repairs to the fleet.

From the Canary Islands, Columbus continued westward, setting a course for the Caribbean. The fleet sailed across the Atlantic, braving the vast open waters and encountering challenges such as storms and unpredictable weather conditions. Despite these obstacles, Columbus managed to maintain the cohesion of the fleet and ensure progress towards the intended destination.

As the fleet approached the Lesser Antilles in the Caribbean, Columbus faced a difficult decision regarding the route to take. He ultimately decided to navigate through the Windward Islands, passing by Dominica, Martinique, and Saint Lucia. This route offered a more direct path towards Hispaniola, the same island he had visited during the first voyage.

Upon their arrival in Hispaniola, Columbus and his crew encountered a drastically changed landscape. The settlement he had established during the first voyage had been destroyed, and tensions with the local indigenous peoples escalated. Nonetheless, Columbus resolved to rebuild and establish a new settlement, laying the foundation for ongoing European presence in the region.

From Hispaniola, the fleet continued its exploration of the Caribbean, visiting various islands such as Puerto Rico and Jamaica. Columbus sought to expand Spain’s influence and establish trading relationships with the indigenous populations. During this time, the fleet faced both friendly encounters and conflicts with the native inhabitants, shaping the course of future colonization efforts.

After months of exploration, Columbus and his fleet began their return journey to Spain in March 1496. The exact route of their return voyage varied, as different ships in the fleet may have taken different paths based on their individual circumstances and conditions. However, the return route generally followed a similar path to the first voyage, crossing the Atlantic Ocean and arriving back in Spain, albeit with the knowledge of a new world.

The second voyage of Christopher Columbus expanded upon the discoveries of the first, further exploring the Caribbean and establishing a continued European presence in the region. Despite the challenges faced during the journey, the determination and navigational skills of Columbus allowed for the successful completion of the second expedition, solidifying Spain’s claim to the newly discovered lands and setting the stage for further exploration and colonization in the Americas.

Differences in Ships and Crew

The second voyage of Christopher Columbus differed from the first in terms of both the composition of the fleet and the crew members chosen to accompany him. These differences played a significant role in shaping the outcome of the expedition and influencing the interactions with the indigenous populations encountered along the way.

For the second voyage, Columbus assembled a larger fleet comprised of seventeen ships, a notable increase from the three ships used in the first voyage. This expansion allowed for a greater capacity to transport supplies, provisions, and crew members. The larger fleet also provided Columbus with more flexibility in terms of exploration and the establishment of settlements in the newly discovered lands.

The composition of the fleet included a mix of caravels and carracks. Caravels, known for their maneuverability and ability to sail close to the wind, were ideal for exploration and coastal navigation. Carracks, on the other hand, were larger ships capable of transporting heavier cargo and facilitating longer voyages. The inclusion of these different types of vessels allowed for improved logistics and facilitated the establishment of more permanent settlements in the Caribbean.

In terms of the crew, the second voyage of Columbus saw some changes in personnel. The crew members selected for the second expedition were often more experienced in maritime activities and had a better understanding of the challenges that awaited them. Their prior experience provided them with valuable insights into navigation, ship maintenance, and handling various situations that arose during the voyage.

Columbus paid particular attention to recruiting individuals with expertise in various fields that would be beneficial for the expedition. He sought out skilled sailors, navigators, and interpreters who were proficient in languages spoken by indigenous peoples. The inclusion of interpreters was crucial in facilitating communication and establishing trade relationships with the native populations.

In addition to navigators and interpreters, craftsmen and artisans were also included in the crew. These individuals were skilled in trades such as shipbuilding, carpentry, and blacksmithing, providing crucial support for maintaining and repairing the fleet during the voyage. Their expertise ensured that the ships remained seaworthy and capable of withstanding the challenges of prolonged exploration.

With a larger and more experienced crew, Columbus could delegate responsibilities more efficiently, allowing for smoother operations and improved coordination among the ships. The presence of specialists also enabled the crew to make necessary repairs, construct temporary settlements, and interact with the indigenous peoples more effectively.

The differences in the ships and crew for the second voyage of Christopher Columbus were instrumental in expanding the scope of exploration and establishing a more significant European presence in the Caribbean. The larger fleet provided logistical advantages, and the experienced crew members brought valuable skills and knowledge to navigate the challenges encountered during the expedition.

Encounters and Discoveries During the Second Voyage

The second voyage of Christopher Columbus brought about a series of new encounters and discoveries as the expedition delved deeper into the uncharted territories of the Americas. These encounters with both the native populations and the natural environment yielded significant findings that expanded European knowledge of the New World.

As Columbus and his fleet ventured further into the Caribbean, they encountered various indigenous tribes and civilizations. One notable encounter was with the Caribs, a warlike tribe known for their fierce resistance against European colonization. The interactions with the native populations during the second voyage revealed cultural, linguistic, and technological differences, offering valuable insights into the diversity of the indigenous peoples of the Americas.

During the course of the expedition, Columbus and his crew made several important discoveries. One of the significant findings was the island of Dominica, which they encountered while sailing through the Windward Islands. This discovery not only expanded European knowledge of the Caribbean but also prompted further exploration of the surrounding islands.

Another noteworthy discovery during the second voyage was the sighting of Puerto Rico, which Columbus believed to be one of the “most beautiful lands that human eyes have ever seen.” The encounter with Puerto Rico marked the first European contact with the island and opened the door to future exploration, settlement, and colonization.

Additionally, Columbus and his crew re-visited Hispaniola, the island previously encountered during the first voyage. They established a new settlement named Isabella, aiming to secure a stronger foothold in the region. However, conflicts with the indigenous populations and internal disputes within the crew hindered the success of the settlement, prompting Columbus to seek further exploration opportunities.

Continuing their voyage, Columbus’s fleet reached the island of Jamaica, which he called “Santiago.” Although no permanent settlement was established, the encounter with Jamaica provided information about its resources, geography, and the native inhabitants.

Throughout the expedition, the crew also made observations and discoveries related to flora, fauna, and natural resources. They encountered various plants and animals previously unknown to Europeans, documenting their findings and collecting specimens for further exploration and study.

In summary, the second voyage of Christopher Columbus brought about significant encounters and discoveries in the Caribbean and the surrounding islands. These encounters deepened European understanding of the indigenous peoples and their cultures, while the discoveries of new lands expanded the knowledge of the region’s geography, resources, and potential for future colonization and navigation.

Interaction with Indigenous People

The second voyage of Christopher Columbus marked a significant continuation of European interactions with indigenous peoples in the Americas. These interactions were complex, shaped by a combination of curiosity, cultural misunderstandings, and the pursuit of dominance and resources. The encounters between Columbus and the native populations had profound impacts on both sides, forever altering the course of history.

During the second voyage, Columbus and his crew encountered several indigenous tribes and civilizations in the Caribbean. The interactions varied, ranging from initial curiosity and exchanges of goods to conflicts and misunderstandings that resulted in violence.

One of the main objectives of Columbus’s interactions with the indigenous peoples was to establish friendly relationships and establish trade networks. However, the cultural differences and the language barrier often created challenges. Columbus relied on interpreters to communicate, but misinterpretations and miscommunications were common.

The indigenous populations, who had no prior knowledge of Europeans, had their own customs, traditions, and social structures. They were curious about the newcomers, but also wary of their intentions. Some indigenous populations initially greeted Columbus and his crew with hospitality and curiosity, offering gifts and assistance.

However, as tensions increased and conflicts arose over issues such as territory and resources, the interactions deteriorated. The lack of understanding and cultural divides led to acts of violence from both sides. Columbus and his crew were sometimes forced to defend themselves against attacks from indigenous populations, which contributed to a breakdown in trust and cooperation.

Furthermore, Columbus’s pursuits for gold and native labor to support Spain’s colonization efforts strained the relationships with the indigenous populations. His demands for tribute and labor from the locals caused resentment and resistance.

The consequences of these interactions were devastating for the indigenous peoples. The arrival of Europeans brought diseases such as smallpox, measles, and influenza, to which the native populations had no immunity. This led to widespread epidemics and significant population declines. Additionally, the arrival of European colonizers disrupted the social fabric of indigenous communities, leading to forced labor, enslavement, and the loss of land and resources.

It is essential to acknowledge that these interactions were not homogenous. While some indigenous populations faced violence and oppression, others managed to maintain a degree of autonomy and resist European control. The varying responses of the indigenous populations to European colonization highlight the complexity and diversity of their experiences.

The interactions between Columbus and the indigenous people during the second voyage were marked by cultural clashes, miscommunications, and the pursuit of power and resources. These encounters left a lasting impact on the indigenous populations, forever changing their way of life and laying the foundation for centuries of European colonization and the resulting tragic consequences.

Return and Reception of the Second Voyage

Upon the completion of his second voyage, Christopher Columbus and his fleet returned to Spain, where their arrival evoked a mixture of anticipation and curiosity. The return and reception of the second voyage were marked by both triumph and disappointment, as the outcomes of the expedition did not fully meet the initial expectations.

The return journey, which commenced in March 1496, was challenging and fraught with difficulties. Columbus and his crew had to navigate rough seas, endure treacherous weather conditions, and contend with the wear and tear on the ships. However, eventually, they managed to safely arrive back in Spain, having successfully completed a significant exploration of the Caribbean and surrounding islands.

The reception of the second voyage was noticeably different from the euphoria that greeted Columbus after his first voyage. While the initial expedition had brought back tales of exotic lands, potential riches, and encounters with indigenous peoples, the results of the second voyage were perceived as falling short of expectations.

Columbus’s failure to find the highly sought-after gold and spices in considerable quantities disappointed the Spanish crown and other sponsors. The lack of substantial material gain raised doubts about the lucrative nature of the newly discovered lands and the feasibility of establishing profitable trade routes.

Despite these disappointments, Columbus did return with significant discoveries and valuable knowledge. The detailed accounts, maps, and descriptions of the lands and peoples he encountered during the second voyage expanded European understanding of the New World and enriched geographical knowledge.

The reaction of the Spanish public to the second voyage was mixed. Some celebrated Columbus’s achievements and the expansion of Spain’s influence in the Americas, recognizing the potential for further colonization and exploration. Others doubted the significance of the discoveries and questioned the value of continued investment in Columbus’s voyages.

Columbus himself faced criticism and scrutiny upon his return. Accusations of mismanagement, harsh treatment of the indigenous populations, and misrepresentation of the expedition’s results began to circulate. Some detractors saw the expedition as an unsuccessful endeavor and called for an end to Columbus’s explorations.

However, despite the criticism, Columbus was eventually able to secure support for subsequent voyages. His tenacity and persuasive skills allowed him to convince the Spanish crown to finance further explorations, leading to additional voyages that expanded European knowledge of the lands discovered during the second voyage.

In summary, the return and reception of the second voyage of Christopher Columbus were marked by a more tempered response compared to the initial enthusiasm surrounding the first voyage. While the financial gains were not as significant as anticipated, the expedition did yield valuable geographic knowledge and paved the way for future explorations. The mixed reception reflects the complexities surrounding the understanding and appreciation of Columbus’s voyages and their impact on the New World.

Impact and Significance of the Second Voyage

The second voyage of Christopher Columbus left a lasting impact on both the Old World and the New World. It expanded European knowledge of the Americas, solidified Spain’s presence in the region, and set the stage for further exploration and colonization. The significance of the second voyage can be seen in various aspects, ranging from geographic discoveries to cultural and historical implications.

One of the key impacts of the second voyage was the expansion of European knowledge about the New World. Columbus’s detailed accounts, maps, and descriptions of the lands and peoples he encountered during the expedition enriched Europe’s understanding of the geography, flora, and fauna of the Americas. This knowledge provided a foundation for future explorations and paved the way for the mapping and colonization of the region.

The second voyage also had a profound cultural impact. The encounters between Columbus’s crew and the indigenous peoples of the Americas resulted in the exchange of goods, ideas, languages, and knowledge. This cultural exchange, while complex and often marked by misunderstandings and conflicts, contributed to the blending of different cultures and the formation of new identities in the Americas.

The establishment of settlements during the second voyage, such as Isabella in Hispaniola, laid the groundwork for permanent European colonization of the region. Columbus’s voyages opened the door for subsequent waves of European settlers, leading to the transformation of the Americas and the establishment of enduring European colonies.

The second voyage also had far-reaching consequences for the indigenous populations of the Americas. The arrival of Europeans brought devastating effects, including diseases to which the native populations had no immunity, leading to widespread epidemics and significant population declines. The colonization efforts that followed the second voyage resulted in the displacement, enslavement, and exploitation of indigenous peoples, forever altering their societies and way of life.

The significance of the second voyage extends beyond its immediate impact. It set a precedent for continued exploration, colonization, and exploitation of the New World by European powers. The voyages of Columbus opened up a new era of global interconnectedness, initiating the Columbian Exchange – the transfer of plants, animals, diseases, and ideas between Europe, Africa, and the Americas.

The study of Columbus’s second voyage serves as a reminder of the complexities of exploration and colonization. It prompts us to critically examine the interactions and legacies of European colonization, acknowledging the devastating effects on indigenous populations and the lasting imprint on the cultural, social, and political landscapes of the Americas.

In summary, the second voyage of Christopher Columbus had a profound impact on multiple levels. It expanded European knowledge, solidified Spain’s presence, initiated colonization efforts, and forever changed the course of history. The consequences of the second voyage, both positive and negative, continue to shape our understanding of the Americas and the lasting effects of European exploration and colonization.

The second voyage of Christopher Columbus marked a significant chapter in the history of exploration and colonization. Despite not achieving its original objectives, this expedition had far-reaching consequences for the Old World and the New World, reshaping global dynamics and cultural landscapes in profound ways.

Through the second voyage, European knowledge of the Americas expanded significantly. Columbus’s explorations provided detailed accounts, maps, and descriptions that enriched Europe’s understanding of the geography, resources, and peoples of the New World. This knowledge laid the foundation for future explorations, colonization, and the establishment of trade networks.

The encounters with indigenous populations during the second voyage brought about a complex and tumultuous period of cultural exchange. While filled with misunderstandings, conflicts, and devastating consequences for native populations, the interactions between Europeans and indigenous peoples marked the beginning of a new era of intercultural contact, shaping the development of societies in the Americas.

The second voyage also had a lasting impact on the geopolitical landscape. The establishment of settlements and subsequent colonization efforts initiated by Columbus paved the way for European dominance in the Americas. It set the stage for further exploration and colonization by other European powers, forever altering the demographics, economies, and political structures of the region.

However, it is crucial to acknowledge the dark legacies of the second voyage. The arrival of Europeans brought about disease, violence, and enslavement that had devastating consequences for the indigenous populations of the Americas. The exploitation and marginalization of these populations cannot be overlooked in assessing the impact of Columbus’s voyages.

In the larger context of history, the second voyage of Christopher Columbus represents a pivotal moment in the interconnectedness of global civilizations. It sparked the Columbian Exchange, which forever changed the flow of goods, ideas, and diseases between Europe, Africa, and the Americas. The consequences of this exchange continue to shape the world we live in today.

Reflecting on the second voyage of Columbus prompts a critical examination of the complexities surrounding exploration, colonization, and their consequences. It serves as a reminder of the need to understand history from multiple perspectives, acknowledging both the achievements and the human suffering that accompanied these transformative voyages.

In conclusion, the second voyage of Christopher Columbus was a defining moment in human history, with wide-ranging implications for both the Old World and the New World. It expanded knowledge, facilitated cultural exchange, initiated colonization efforts, and ultimately shaped the course of world events. Through its achievements and controversies, this historical episode holds valuable lessons for present and future generations to navigate the complex dynamics of exploration, colonization, and the pursuit of a more equitable and inclusive world.


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  1. The Second Voyage of Christopher Columbus

    The second voyage was to be a large-scale colonization and exploration project. Columbus was given 17 ships and over 1,000 men. Included on this voyage, for the first time, were European domesticated animals such as pigs, horses, and cattle.

  2. Voyages of Christopher Columbus

    Second voyage (1493-1496) Columbus's second voyage. The stated purpose of the second voyage was to convert the indigenous Americans to Christianity. Before Columbus left Spain, he was directed by Ferdinand and Isabella to maintain friendly, even loving, relations with the natives. He set sail from Cádiz, Spain, on 25 September 1493.

  3. The second and third voyages of Christopher Columbus

    Christopher Columbus - Exploration, Caribbean, Americas: The gold, parrots, spices, and human captives Columbus displayed for his sovereigns at Barcelona convinced all of the need for a rapid second voyage. Columbus was now at the height of his popularity, and he led at least 17 ships out from Cádiz on September 25, 1493. Colonization and Christian evangelization were openly included this ...

  4. Christopher Columbus Second Voyage

    While Christopher Columbus' first voyage to the New World in 1492 was significant, his second voyage in 1493 was also just as important and is one of the most important events in all of world history. The second voyage to the New World by Columbus began on September 24th, 1493 when Columbus and crew left Spain. Due to the success of his first voyage, and promises of wealth in the New World ...

  5. Christopher Columbus

    Christopher Columbus - 2nd Voyage. Columbus left from Cádiz in Spain for his second voyage (1493-1496) on September 24, 1493, with 17 ships and about 1200 men. His aim was to conquer the Taíno tribe and colonise the region. On October 13, the ships left the Canary Islands, following a more southerly course than on his first voyage.

  6. Christopher Columbus

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  7. Christopher Columbus

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    First Voyage: 1492-1493 CE; Second Voyage: 1493-1496 CE; Third Voyage: 1498-1500 CE; Fourth Voyage: 1502-1504 CE; Columbus never set out to discover a New World, but to find a western sea route to the Far East to facilitate trade after the land route of the Silk Road, between Europe and the East, had been closed by the Ottoman Empire in 1453 CE, initiating the so-called Age of Exploration ...

  9. Christopher Columbus

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  10. SEcond Voyage of Columbus

    On his second voyage to the New World, Columbus commanded a sizable fleet of 17 ships. The expedition's primary objective was to explore and settle the new lands Columbus had discovered. Another significant goal was to Christianize any natives they encountered. On November 3rd, 1493, the expedition made its first landfall on an island that ...

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    Subsequent Voyages Columbus took three other similar trips to this region. His second voyage in 1493 carried a large fleet with the intention of conquering the native populations and establishing colonies. At one point, the natives attacked and killed the settlers left at Fort Navidad. Over time the colonists enslaved many of the natives ...

  12. Second Voyage of Columbus

    The Second Voyage of Columbus. After the success of Columbus's first voyage, he had little trouble convincing the Spanish Sovereigns, Ferdinand and Isabela, to follow up immediately with a second voyage. Unlike the exploratory first voyage, the second voyage was a massive colonization effort, comprising seventeen ships and over a thousand men.

  13. Christopher Columbus' Second Voyage

    Christopher Columbus is one of the most significant figures in all of World History and is particularly important to major world events such as the Age of Exploration and Renaissance.His four famous journeys to the New World in the late 15th century and early 16th century altered the history of the world and led to a mass migration of people from the Old World to the New World.

  14. Christopher Columbus

    Christopher Columbus (/ k ə ˈ l ʌ m b ə s /; between 25 August and 31 October 1451 - 20 May 1506) was an Italian explorer and navigator from the Republic of Genoa who completed four Spanish-based voyages across the Atlantic Ocean sponsored by the Catholic Monarchs, opening the way for the widespread European exploration and European colonization of the Americas.

  15. PDF The First and Second Voyages of Christopher Columbus (1492-1493)

    The First and Second Voyages of Christopher Columbus (1492-1493) NCSS Thematic Strand: Time, Continuity, and Change Grade Level: 7-12 ... Columbus wrote it in 1493 prior to his second voyage. It was addressed to the treasurer of King Ferdinand of Spain. Give the students time to read the letter.

  16. Christopher Columbus: Biography, Explorer and Navigator, Holiday

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  17. Christopher Columbus

    1493-96: Second Voyage. Departing Spain in September 1493, Columbus leads at least 17 ships back to the Americas. He returns to Hispaniola, explores other Caribbean islands, and founds several cities. In 1494 Spain and Portugal sign the Treaty of Tordesillas, dividing the Western Hemisphere between them. Columbus leaves his two brothers in ...

  18. PDF Columbus, Hispaniola settlement, 1493

    Columbus sailed on his first voyage with three ships and about 100 men, landing in the Bahamas on an island whose identity remains uncertain. After exploring the Bahamas and Cuba, he reached the island he named La Isla Español (Hispaniola). When the Santa Maria became grounded, he ordered a small fort to be built with its salvaged lumber ...


    A Letter addressed to the Chapter of Seville by Dr. Chanca, native of that city, and physician to the fleet of Columbus, in his second voyage to the West Indies, describing the principal events which occurred during that voyage. M ost noble sir,—Since the occurrences which I relate in private letters to other persons, are not of such general ...

  20. Christopher Columbus

    Christopher Columbus opened the world of the Americas to his fellow Europeans. Europeans called Vikings had reached the Americas hundreds of years before Columbus first arrived there in 1492. However, the Vikings did not establish long-lasting settlements. Columbus explored the area and brought back more Europeans with him on later trips. ...

  21. Christopher Columbus

    Second and Third Voyages (1493-1500) Columbus left Cadiz, Spain, on September 25, 1493, with 17 ships. ... Columbus embarked on his final voyage on May 9, 1502. Although plagued by illness, Columbus insisted on leading the expedition, believing his voyages were divinely inspired. Denied entry into Hispaniola, he sailed south to explore ...

  22. How Did The Second Voyage Of Columbus Differ From The First?

    The voyages of Columbus opened up a new era of global interconnectedness, initiating the Columbian Exchange - the transfer of plants, animals, diseases, and ideas between Europe, Africa, and the Americas. The study of Columbus's second voyage serves as a reminder of the complexities of exploration and colonization.

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    Christopher Columbus - Explorer, Voyages, New World: The ships for the first voyage—the Niña, Pinta, and Santa María—were fitted out at Palos, on the Tinto River in Spain. Consortia put together by a royal treasury official and composed mainly of Genoese and Florentine bankers in Sevilla (Seville) provided at least 1,140,000 maravedis to outfit the expedition, and Columbus supplied more ...