Monday, October 11, 2010

Columbus Day

Christopher Columbus' arrival in the Americas, specifically the Bahamas, occured on October 12, 1492.  Columbus Day first became an official state holiday in Colorado in 1906, and became a federal holiday in 1934.  However, people have celebrated Columbus' voyage since the colonial period.  In 1792, New York City and other U.S. cities celebrated the 300th anniversary of his landing in the New World.  In 1892, President Benjamin Harrison called upon the people of the United States to celebrate Columbus Day on the 400 anniversary of the event.  During the four hundredth anniversary, in 1892, teachers, preachers, poets and politicians used Columbus Day rituals to teach ideals of patriotism.  These patriotic rituals were framed around themes such as support for war, citizenship boundaries, the importance of loyalty to the nation, and celebrating social progress.

Columbus Day is celebrated nationally the second Monday in October.

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