Taíno Resistance

This October 14—528 years ago—Columbus seized his first seven slaves in the Caribbean, only two days after arriving on the island he named “San Salvador,” the Taíno Guanahaní. They were to serve as guides and interpreters. He wrote in his Journal that the island’s...

Discussion of Enemies of the Human Race

526 years ago, on July 7, 1494, an elderly, indigenous man on Cuba’s southern coast admonished Columbus for inspiring great fear and warned that the souls of the enemies of the human race traveled to a dark place on death. Some locations where Columbus and Taíno...

Oath at Cortés and Taíno Geographers

Encounters Unforeseen: 1492 Retold dramatizes 1492 from the perspective of both Taíno and European protagonists, including depicting Taíno geographic knowledge, Columbus’s cartographic and scriptural arguments that he’d arrive in the “Indies,” and his reliance on...

Columbus and Fidel

In early January (before the pandemic hit NYC!), I spent two weeks in Cuba researching events I’m dramatizing in Encounters Unforeseen’s sequel (1493-98), including visiting sites along the island’s southern coast where Columbus and Taíno chieftains met on his second...

Battle of Santo Cerro

The first major battle in the Americas between Spanish conquerors and indigenous peoples occurred 525 years ago, in late March 1495, near the pilgrimage now known as Santo Cerro (Holy Hill), north of the city of La Vega in the Dominican Republic’s fertile Cibao...

Caonabó and Anacaona

Encounters Unforeseen: 1492 Retold dramatizes the history leading to 1492 from the perspective of both Taíno and European protagonists, including depicting the weddings and marriages of three couples—Spain’s Queen Isabella and King Ferdinand, Columbus and his...