Thursday, October 11, 1492

The seas were the roughest yet encountered, with waves crashing over the decks. But the signs the ships were approaching land were unmistakable, and the crews were heartened. The Niña retrieved a green branch with red berries intact, fresh as if just cut. The Pinta...

Friday, October 12, 1492

At about 2:00 a.m., a seaman serving lookout on the Pinta shouted that land was to the northwest, and the Pinta’s lombard was discharged. Sailors on the three ships cried, embraced, and sang a hymn to the Virgin Mary for watching over them. The ships quartered...

Sunday, October 14, 1492

Columbus sailed southwest from Guanahaní to search for Japan and gold. The map below—drawn for Encounters Unforeseen—shows the Taíno Caribbean which Columbus would explore, with Taíno names for islands. Before departing Guanahaní, Columbus abducted seven Guanahanían...

Wednesday, October 17, 1492

Columbus wrote his Journal as a report to Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand. On October 17, he indicated in the Journal that he was sailing in the “Indies” (as he had promised them) and referred to the Taínos as “Indians.” Isabella and Ferdinand approach Barcelona,...