Science: Columbus Vindicated

When Columbus first landed in northern Haiti (Hispaniola) in 1492, he captured a lovely Indian girl who was expensively but sparsely clad—with a golden nose plug and nothing else. Next day he found a town of 1,000 houses, some of whose inhabitants wore golden ear pendants. When he returned to Spain, he reported many of these small treasures.

Archaeologists have long been suspicious of Columbus' log. After years of digging in graves and townsites of the Indians who then inhabited the Caribbean islands, they found only three tiny scraps of gold. It looked to them as if the "Admiral of the Ocean...

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