HARRISONBURG, Va -- On Oct 12th, 1492 Christopher Columbus sailed into the Bahamas. People who are critics of Columbus wonder if this day even should be celebrated.
Some question Columbus' character, calling him a nasty person who was responsible for much of the suffering that the Native Americans faced, but one James Madison University professor believes it is still an important holiday because the voyage dramatically changed the world for the good.
“This was probably the greatest, was the greatest, leap of seamanship to that point. And in succeeding, I think it opened up the world,” said Dr. John Butt, a JMU history professor.
Columbus day is typically celebrated on the Monday closest to Oct 12th. Next year's Columbus Day will be on Monday, Oct 14th.
© Copyright 2014 WHSV / Gray Television Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.