FROM THE ARCHIVE

Columbus Day started in Colorado

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MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 10, 2001

The nation's first ever Columbus Day took place in Denver, Colorado, on October 13, 1905.

According to a local historian, Italians in Colorado at the time were victims of racial discrimination. So they looked for a hero and found one in Columbus, who is said to have Italian heritage although the facts are in dispute by some.

Incidentally, Colorado around the late 1800s was waged in a campaign to drive out Ute and other tribes from the state. The U.S. Army also massacred Indians in Colorado during the same time frame.

Columbus Day eventually became a federal holiday in 1971. This year, indigenous and other activists will hold a counter-event to a parade being organized by Italian-Americans.

Get the Story:
Columbus Day began in Colo. (The Denver Rocky Mountain News 9/8)

Relevant Links:
Transform Columbus Day - http://www.transformcolumbusday.org