Minor Music
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Columbus Day
Categories: Columbus Day, October

In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue. Since then, the Italian-born explorer has been both celebrated and vilified for his part in the establishment of the lasting ties between Europe and The New World.

Colonial Americans celebrated the 300th anniversary of the infamous voyage made by those aboard The Nina, The Pinta and The Santa Maria.  Teachers, poets and musicians offered their respective takes on the events of 1492 as lessons in bravery, loyalty and patriotism.

But regardless of where you stand on this infamous figure, the truth remains that Colonial Americans raised him to iconic status by naming our nation’s capital The District of Columbia. And prior to “The Star Spangled Banner,” one of our nation’s unofficial anthems was none other than “Hail Columbia,” which still holds a place of national honor as the official entrance song of the Vice President of the United States. Check out this link to The United States Army Band site for “Pershing’s Own” version of a patriotic classic.

On the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ voyage, President Benjamin Harrison issued a proclamation in support of  local observances of Columbus as a ”pioneer of progress and enlightenment.”  Decades later, in response to the combined lobbying efforts of members of the Catholic faith, Italian-Americans, and organizations like The Knights of Columbus, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt designated Columbus Day as a national holiday in 1934.

  A quick search of Amazon gave us a surprisingly long list of download-worthy recordings. But Our favorite, by far, is Christopher Columbus by Dinah Washington. Check it out and add it to your October playlist.

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