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Aninterview on Christopher Columbus

ChristopherColumbus is one of the most famous, great explorers in history. Hewas born in 1451 in Italy and died in 1506. During his lifetime,Columbus made several trips across the Atlantic Ocean to differentregions in the world, including South America and the Caribbean. Ilike exploration, and that is why I have developed interest on thelife of Columbus (Bauer, 21). Columbus lived during a period whentechnology was not developed. Despite encountering numerouschallenges during his trips around the world, Columbus did notrelent. I have always pondered about the challenges that heencountered and how he tackled them. To understand these issues, Ihave developed an interview schedule that will enable me tounderstand the life of Columbus and his explorations. The responsesto the interview questions will reflect the life and encounters ofColumbus, from his own perspective.


JeanClaude: Welcome Mr. Columbus. As we commence with this conversation,you can give us a brief background of the family in which you werebrought up.

ChristopherColumbus: I was brought up in Genoa and Sovona in Italy. Since I wasyoung, my father, Susanna Fontanarossa, has been working as a weaver.He also has a cheese stand, where I spent most of the time workingwhen I was young. My mother, Susanna Fontanarossa, is a housewife,but she also assists my father in carrying out his businesses (Bauer,25). I have four brothers, Giacomo, Pellegrino, Giovanni andBartolomeo. I have one sister, called Bianchinetta.

JeanClaude: When did you start the exploration of the world?

ChristopherColumbus: I developed interest for exploration when I was very young.I always portrayed interest for exploration and my parents supportedme and my ambitions. I started exploration at the age of 10, when Ipleaded my parents to support me to make a trip to the sea, and theyaccepted. By the age of 21, I was already sailing in a Genoese shipwhere I was hired by René I of Anjou, who aimed to overcome thekingdom of Naples. In 1476, I joined Genoese armed envoy that wassent to Northern Europe to take valuable Cargo (Bauer, 29). When wearrived in Ireland, the ship docked at Galway. On the way beforearriving in Ireland, I had seen interesting features, whichinfluenced me to focus more on exploration. Every discovery wasimportant to me, including mountains and rivers and people withunique cultures. Consequently, I decided not to proceed with thejourney and to focus more on exploration. But I managed to engage inserious exploration in 1492 (Wade, 13)

JeanClaude: Where were you between 1476 and 1492?

ChristopherColumbus: When we arrived in Ireland, I stayed there for severalmonths and in 1477, I sailed to Lisbon, in a Portuguese ship. InPortugal, I learned more about history, geography and astronomy,which increased my interest on exploration. I made a request toPortuguese leaders to be assisted with Portuguese ships to sailthrough the Atlantic to explore new lands, but the leaders rejectedmy proposal. In 1992, I went to Spain and gave the same proposal toQueen Isabella and King Ferdinand II. My proposal was accepted, and Iwas given three expedition ships and 90 crew members and I startedthe exploration (Wade, 13).

JeanClaude: Where did you start with a serious exploration?

ChristopherColumbus: We started our first trip from Spain towards the west onAugust 3, 1492. On October 11, 1492, we landed on the CaribbeanIslands. The first Island we spotted was Guanahani (San Salvador)(Wade, 15).

JeanClaude: What other new discoveries did you find in the island?

ChristopherColumbus: In Guanahani, we only found Taino Indians. Afterwards, wespotted Hispaniola (Dominican Republic and Haiti). We also spottedCuba and other small islands. After that, we returned to Spain andarrived there on March 15, 1493 (Wade, 11).

JeanClaude: Which challenges did you did you come across during the firsttrip?

ChristopherColumbus: The major challenge that we encountered during the firsttrip was that we did not have any idea on where we were going. Ourmain aim was to move to India in Asia, but we did not have anythingto show directions. Instead of landing on Asia, we landed in America.Secondly, one of the ships was wrecked in Atlantic Ocean on our wayback to Spain. One of the ships sailed off alone to Spain and tookseveral months before bringing us assistance (Berne, 45).

JeanClaude: When did you make the next trip?

ChristopherColumbus: We made our second major trip in September 25, 1993. Thetrip had more than 1,200 men, and we were given 17 hips. The aim ofthe trip was to find Indians, to capture them and to take them inSpain as slaves. We landed on the Caribbean Irelands and captured theIndigenous Indians who were living in the islands. We sailed back toSpain in November the same year (Berne, 51).

JeanClaude: Which challenges did you encounter during the second trip?

ChristopherColumbus: During the second trip, there were minimal challengessince we had prepared ourselves well. However, we were required bythe Spanish leaders to explore areas where gold could be mined.However, we did not trace any sites during that trip (Berne, 54).

JeanClaude: Explain about any other trips that you took after the secondone

ChristopherColumbus: After the second trip, we made another major trip to theCaribbean Islands in May 30, 1498. After arriving there, we decidedto sail further towards the south, and we landed on Venezuela andTrinidad. We went back to Spain on October 1500 and planned for thelast trip, which started on May 1502. During the last twoexpeditions, we were able to discover several sites where gold couldbe mined (Stapley, 92).

JeanClaude: Was there any other European who had stepped foot in any partof America before you?

ChristopherColumbus: Yes. I came to learn later that there was another Europeancalled Vikings who had landed on the shores of America before me(Stapley, 98).

JeanClaude: So you were not the first person to discover America?

ChristopherColumbus: No, America was first discovered by the indigenouspopulation (Stapley, 112)

JeanClaude: How did you manage to succeed in the navigation through theAtlantic Ocean despite the fact that you did not have any equipmentto show directions?

ChristopherColumbus: We mainly relied on trade winds. While sailing from CanaryIslands to San Salvador, for instance, we relied on brisk winds fromthe East (Stapley, 113).

JeanClaude: What was the most interesting discovery for you during theexploration?

ChristopherColumbus: My most interesting discovery during the whole explorationperiod was that the world is round and not flat (Stapley, 113).


Bauer,Marion Dane r. ChristopherColumbus.New York: Scholastic Inc, 2010

Berne,Emma Carlson. ChristopherColumbus: The Voyage That Changed the World.

WashingtonDC: Sterling Publishing Company, 2008

Stapley,Mildred. ChristopherColumbus (Webster`s French Thesaurus Edition).Paris: Icon

GroupInternational, Incorporated, 2008

Wade,Mary Dodson. ChristopherColumbus.California: Capstone, 2007