Brief Biography of Columbus Research Paper

Christopher Columbus — a Hero? Or Not.

The legacy of Christopher Columbus — in many people’s minds — entails bravery, heroism, courage and resolve. But does this man really deserve the reverent accolades that he receives? Does he deserve to have a day named in his memory? Did her really “discover America” as the legend has it? All of these question — an others — will be addressed in this paper.

We have a holiday to celebrate him. We were taught that he was a remarkable sailor and explorer who helped prove that the world was round. But for some people Christopher Columbus was anything but a hero. This paper shows why doubters are justified in their skepticism.

Brief Biography of Columbus

Columbus was Italian, but he served Spain when he set sail for India in 1492, according to his biography in Fordham University. Columbus was born in Genoa, Italy, in 1451. His father was a master weaver who had a wine shop and his father sailed from time to get supplies for his shop, and Christopher went with him, getting familiar with the sea and loving the adventure as well. When Columbus came up with the idea he called “Enterprise to the Indies,” he received the funding from Spain ( Columbus sailed around many islands in the Caribbean, and landed on many as well, but the Fordham site says “he never fully understood that he had come upon a hitherto unknown (to most Europeans) continent.”

Columbus Didn’t “Discover” America

An editorial in the peer-reviewed journal History takes a strong position in regard to Columbus’s alleged feats of glory. First of all, this editorial (written 500 years after Columbus sailed “the ocean blue”) asserts what many people of good faith in the United States have asserted for hundreds of years. And that assertion points to the fact that the American continent was “peopled by millions — how many millions remains open to fierce controversy — of men women and children centuries before the Genoan captain rashly undertook to prove that the world was smaller in circumference than it really was” (Cornwell, et al., 1992, p. 1).

The so-called “discovery” of the Americas by Columbus was, in reality, “an invasion” by Europeans, Cornwell continues. The results of the invasion were disastrous with virtually no “beneficial consequences” for the aborigines, Cornwell explains. There is no way of knowing how many Native Americans “perished from the exchange of microbes” between the Europeans and the native peoples, but other authors have catalogued the diseases brought from Europe once Columbus opened the floodgates.

The diseases that author Russell Thornton lists (as having been brought from Europe) include: measles, smallpox,, the bubonic plague, cholera,, pleurisy, typhoid, scarlet fever, diphtheria, mumps, whooping cough, colds, gonorrhea and chancroid, pneumonia, influenza, typhus and venereal syphilis and Thornton believes that another disease brought over from Europe may have been tuberculosis (Thornton, 44).

The disease that killed more Native Americans than any other brought by Christopher Columbus and those that followed him from Europe was smallpox, according to Thornton (45). The diseases Thornton references took a toll on Indian health but the diseases didn’t just hit people and then disappear. Thornton explains that these diseases came, “they spread, and killed again and again and again” (45). There might have been as many as ninety-three serious epidemics or even pandemics of pathogens from Europe that decimated Native Americans in time, thanks to Columbus opening the door to disaster for the Native Americans.

Meanwhile, Cornwell relates to the fact that after the Americas were “discovered” (or invaded) Native Americans were exploited by being put into forced labor — further “facilitating their annihilation” — until they were pushed aside so the African slaves brought over to the Americas could be put to work (Cornwell, 1). Given these rather dreary realities, Cornwell writes that it is “easy to see how the commemoration of 1492 has become an embarrassment to many American historians” albeit some of those historians hope that “Columbus Day” will pass by quickly and no one will really notice or remark on the fraud that Columbus Day truly is (Cornwell, p. 2).

Meanwhile history professor Lilian Handlin explains that times have truly changed in the sense that Columbus is not the revered and courageous explorer that he once was built up to be. Handlin writes in the peer-reviewed journal The American Scholar that one early American writer had cast Columbus in the image of St. John and another had portrayed him as the “seer of Patmos.” Later in American history Columbus was viewed as a “self-assured, iron-willed, bolddetermined” man who looked like Achilles (Handlin, 2001, p. 81).

Further research by scholars presented a negative image of Columbus, and he was labeled a “genocidal maniac responsible for the atrocities” that were committed against native peoples at Guanahani (Handlin, 82). Given the emerging image of a man not worthy of all the accolades, a man apparently responsible for hideous crimes against native peoples, the National Council of Churches declared a “year of prayer and lamentation” in 1992, fifty years after Columbus apparently landed near the American soil (Handlin, 82).

By 1992, enough was known about Columbus, Handlin continues, that he came to symbolize “colonialism, imperialism, pallocentrism, and elitism”; indeed, he became the “archetypal proponent of patriarchy and ecocide, a rapist who destroyed a gentler, nature-friendly, communal, peace-loving, and stateless culture” (Handlin, 82). The author explains that Columbus has become a “cross between a baby-seal poacher and Adolf Eichmann” (82).

Handlin explains that from the year 1600 to 1750, Columbus was what she calls “an irrelevancy to whom no one paid much attention”; however, in the second half of the 1700s, things changed “dramatically” (82). Columbus’ reputation became “sterling” and he became an icon and a symbol of great discovery. But that reverence turned to ridicule by 1892, when even those that had idolized him “gagged over the fact that the enterprise of the Indies was a Spanish undertaking,” and moreover, there was disgust at the fact that Columbus had sailed “in the service of the forces of darkness, the rack, and the Whore of Babylon” (Handlin, 82). Notwithstanding those negative aspersions cast at Columbus in Europe, in America, the reputation of Columbus was greatly enhanced by Washington Irving wrote a biography of Columbus called The Life and Voyages of Christopher Columbus which was “an instant hit among critics and readers” and made a lot of money for Irving (Handlin, 88).

But when reputations tend to go up due to false information, they surely must also come down, and Columbus’s reputation took a hit when Charles Francis Adams, Jr., with the Massachusetts Historical Society, got national attention when he ridiculed Irving’s book and ripped the Columbus legacy apart. Adams blasted Irving’s book: “The vein of platitudinous moralizing which runs through the book makes it difficult for a writer of the present day to take it seriously” (Handlin, 91). Apparently the negativity that Adams found in documents (that either Irving had not seen or that Irving chose to ignore) truly changed the way many in America viewed Columbus.

“Never, in the whole history of buccaneering, did any black visaged gang of ruffians, swarming over a vessel’s side, indulge in such atrocities” as Columbus had engage in, Adams wrote (Handlin, 92). The atrocities that Adams had discovered in previously undiscovered documents shocked him. “[Columbus engaged in] such general plunder, murder and cruelty as that stately band bearing the cross before them on October 21, 1492 they looted two continents,” Adams asserted (Handlin, 92).

Meanwhile, who embarrassing for scholars who were fully aware of the damage that Columbus had done to native peoples to have the president of the United States laud such a man. Author Gerald Vizenor quotes from then president Ronald Reagan, who signed a proclamation that set October 12 as a federal holiday in honor of Columbus: “Christopher Columbus was a dreamer, a man of vision and courage, a man filled with hope for the future” (Vizenor, 1992, p. 224).

The truth about Columbus, Vizenor asserts, is that he was “an untrue concoction, the ruse of his own representation. He is the overstated adventurer, to be sure,” and moreover Columbus is the “master of neocolonial celebrations in a constitutional democracy” (Vizenor, 225). The author of this article in the peer-reviewed journal Boundary 2 quotes from the book The Devastation of the Indies (by Bartolome de Las Casas):

“Here those Christians perpetrated their first ravages and oppressions against the native peoples. This was the first land in the New

World to be destroyed and depopulated by the Christians, and here they began their subjection of the women and children, taking them away from the Indians to use them and ill-use them, eating the food they provided with their sweat and toil” (Vizenor, 226).

In conclusion, the references in this paper clearly make the point that Christopher Columbus was not a hero at all, but a ruthless and dangerous interloper who invaded the Americas and plundered the natives. That the United States has a special federal holiday in Columbus’ name is an embarrassment to all those individuals that are truly informed as to Columbus’ true legacy. That federal holiday should be changed to honor someone like Patrick Henry or Thomas Paine, true American heroes.

Works Cited

Cornwell, Mark, Quinault, Roland, and Reid, Brian Holden. “Editorial.” History. 77.249 (1992):


Fordham University. “Christopher Columbus.” Retrieved July 13, 2012, from 2007.

Handlin, Lilian. “Discovering Columbus.” The American Scholar. 62.1 (1993): 81-96.

Thornton, Russell. American Indian Holocaust and Survival: A Population History Since 1492.

Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma Press. 1987.

Vizenor, Gerald. “Manifest Manners: The Long Gaze of Christopher Columbus.” Boundary 2.

19.3 (1992)” 223-235.

Get Professional Assignment Help Cheaply

Buy Custom Essay

Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?

Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.

Why Choose Our Academic Writing Service?

  • Plagiarism free papers
  • Timely delivery
  • Any deadline
  • Skilled, Experienced Native English Writers
  • Subject-relevant academic writer
  • Adherence to paper instructions
  • Ability to tackle bulk assignments
  • Reasonable prices
  • 24/7 Customer Support
  • Get superb grades consistently

Online Academic Help With Different Subjects


Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.


Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.

Computer science

Computer science is a tough subject. Fortunately, our computer science experts are up to the match. No need to stress and have sleepless nights. Our academic writers will tackle all your computer science assignments and deliver them on time. Let us handle all your python, java, ruby, JavaScript, php , C+ assignments!


While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.


Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.


In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.


Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.


We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!


We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.


Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.

What discipline/subjects do you deal in?

We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.

Are your writers competent enough to handle my paper?

Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.

What if I don’t like the paper?

There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.

Reasons being:

  • When assigning your order, we match the paper’s discipline with the writer’s field/specialization. Since all our writers are graduates, we match the paper’s subject with the field the writer studied. For instance, if it’s a nursing paper, only a nursing graduate and writer will handle it. Furthermore, all our writers have academic writing experience and top-notch research skills.
  • We have a quality assurance that reviews the paper before it gets to you. As such, we ensure that you get a paper that meets the required standard and will most definitely make the grade.

In the event that you don’t like your paper:

  • The writer will revise the paper up to your pleasing. You have unlimited revisions. You simply need to highlight what specifically you don’t like about the paper, and the writer will make the amendments. The paper will be revised until you are satisfied. Revisions are free of charge
  • We will have a different writer write the paper from scratch.
  • Last resort, if the above does not work, we will refund your money.

Will the professor find out I didn’t write the paper myself?

Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.

What if the paper is plagiarized?

We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.

When will I get my paper?

You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.

Will anyone find out that I used your services?

We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.

How our Assignment  Help Service Works

1.      Place an order

You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.

2.      Pay for the order

Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.

3.      Track the progress

You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.

4.      Download the paper

The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.

smile and order essaysmile and order essay PLACE THIS ORDER OR A SIMILAR ORDER WITH US TODAY AND GET A PERFECT SCORE!!!

order custom essay paper