The Journey of Christpher Columbus
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October 28, 1492 – Cuba

After leaving San Salvador Christopher Columbus followed the directions given by the native peoples of the small island and traveled to Cuba on October 28. By the time he landed on its shores he was certain that it was the large island which the native peoples referred to as Colba. Unsure of exactly where to find the island, and the gold which he believed it held, Columbus had captured a handful of Tainos and ordered them to guide him where he needed to go.

Columbus was very impressed with the beauty and nature of the large island. He was astounded at its splendor and wrote at length about Cuba in his journal and in letters to Spain. Despite finding very little gold on the island, Columbus was infatuated.


Sunday, 28 October 1492
. . . I have never seen anything so beautiful. The country around the river is full of trees, beautiful and green and different from ours, each with flowers and its own kind of fruit. There are many birds of all sizes that sing very sweetly, and there are many palms different from those in Guinea or Spain. Some are of medium height without any bark at the base, and the leaves are very large. The Indians cover their houses with these leaves. The land is very level.

I took the small boat ashore and approached two houses that I thought belonged to fishermen. The people fled in fear. In one of the houses we found a dog that did not bark, and in both houses we found nets made of palm threads; cords; fishhooks made of horn; harpoons made from bone; and other fishing materials. There were many fire hearths; and I believe that many people live together in each house. I ordered that not one thing be touched, and thus it was done.

 


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The Journey of Christopher Columbus