Love him or hate him, there’s no denying Christopher Columbus was a significant figure in world history. His reputation may have taken a beating in recent years, but federal workers still get a paid day off work in his honor. Which makes this the perfect opportunity to revisit the famous explorer’s life and legacy.
Take the quiz below and test your knowledge of the man who discovered the New World (except, of course, for the Vikings who beat him to it and the native peoples who were already here).
1. Where was Columbus born?
A. Rome, Italy
B. Madrid, Spain
C. Genoa, Italy
D. Paris, France
2. What was his occupation?
D. All of the above
3. Where did Columbus intend to go on his famous voyage?
B. East Indies
D. South America
4. What was he hoping to find in the New World?
5. After he was turned down by three countries, who finally sponsored Columbus’ trip?
A. The czar of Russia
B. The pope
C. The king and queen of what is now Spain
D. The king of England
6. Which of these was NOT one of Columbus’ ships?
D. Santa Maria
7. Where did Columbus make landfall?
A. San Salvador, Bahamas
8. In all, how many voyages did Columbus make to the New World?
9. When did Columbus Day become a federal holiday?
10. What state’s capital is named in the explorer’s honor?
D. New Hampshire
Answers: 1-C, 2-D, 3-B, 4-C, 5-C, 6-B, 7-A, 8-D, 9-C, 10-B
J. Mark Powell is a historical novelist and former broadcast journalist. His weekly offbeat look at our forgotten past, “Holy Cow! History,” can be read at jmarkpowell.com.