Saturday, October 6, 2007

Christopher Columbus

Did you know a statue of Christopher Columbus has a permanent residence in the city of San Francisco? Perched high atop Telegraph Hill in front of Coit Tower stands the once-reputed Italian explorer who thought he had discovered America. To view photographic images of this statue, check out the San Francisco Historical Photograph Collection:

1. Go to the SFPL Home Page and select “SFPL-Created Research Tools.”

2. Under the “San Francisco Resources” category, select SF Historical Photograph Collection.”

3. On the left-hand side, select “Search Digitized Images."

4. Enter the keywords “Christopher Columbus” into the search box.

5. From the list of results, select “View Image” to see a larger version of each photograph.

The San Francisco Historical Photograph Collection, located in the San Francisco History Center, contains over 250,000 rare and historical photographs of San Francisco and California from 1850 to the present. This collection also includes the photo morgue of the San Francisco News-Call Bulletin, a daily San Francisco newspaper published in the early 20th century. The Magazines and Newspapers Center has copies of this newspaper dating back to 1959 on microfilm.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It's interesting that we have a statue of Christopher Columbus that came from Verona, Italy. Columbus was born 180 miles from Verona in coastal Genoa.

Contrary to popular myth, contemporaries of Columbus believed the world was round and not flat. Italy and Portugal rejected Columbus's proposal to sail due East because it was too expensive and risky, compared to the predictable sailing routes around the southern tip of Africa to reach India and China. Spain, however, was desperate for a competitive trade advantage over other European countries, and funded Columbus even though expectations were pessimistic.

Columbus's famous voyage with the Nina, Pinta, and the Santa Maria ended up in the Bahamas near Cuba. He thought he ended up in an undiscovered part of Asia. His voyages reignited European interest in the New World after the Vikings landed in Canada half a millennium ago.