According to Richards topical encyclopedia, volume 14 (pg.441), Christopher Columbus and most of his contemporaries believed he was the first discoverer of the new continent, but they were all wrong. It has been proven that the Scandinavian Leif Eriksson breifly colonized what is now called NewFoundland in A.D. 1011. Interestingly enough, the world renowned historian David Beers Quinn, suggests that Englishmen arrived in 1481, a few years before Colombus. Not only was Colombus not the first to discover the new world, he did not even land on the new world. Colombus actually landed on an Island near the virgin Islands, 1200 miles south east of the new world which is in Atlantic waters.
In light of the fact that all this information is widely known, people continue to celebrate Columbus as a hero who deserves to be celebrated for all the good things which he did. Good things? On his return to Spain from the new world, Colombus took several of the Native prisoners with him as evidence of his discovery. However only seven survived the trip. Colombus reported in his journals to the King of Spain that he would repeatedly killed natives in order to show the rest of them that he had power over them. One of the native