Christopher Columbus has been credited with opening North and South America all-about-the-southern-united-states/">for future settlers, but did you know that he never realized that he had found two continents? He believed that he had landed in China. This makes sense since reaching Asia was the goal of his journeys.
Columbus set out in August of 1492 to find Asia. Instead, he landed on an island in the Bahamas after 36 days of sailing. There they met friendly natives who traded beads, spears and parrots with them.
Columbus left 39 men behind to build a settlement on the coast of Hispaniola before returning to Europe.
The king and queen of Spain were very happy and agreed to finance two more trips.
When Columbus reached the settlement in Hispaniola, he discovered that the settlement had been destroyed - probably by native people, although we're not sure.
He made slaves of some of the people and forced them to search for gold.
Columbus' men complained of his poor management and harsh treatment.
Columbus was brought before the king and queen and stripped of his title.
When Columbus died in 1506, he still believed he had discovered a trade route through China.