FALSE: Columbus Mutilated The Indians
Updated: Mar 21
"Radio Voice Italia: Christopher Columbus University" is an online podcast narrated by Robert Petrone, Esq., a civil rights author and attorney, and local Philadelphia expert on Christopher Columbus. Below are bullet points to one of his episodes. If you want to hear more on the topic please click on the Episode ## link provided to listen to his podcast.
The following notes are from Episode 37
Debunking Columbus as maimer, i.e. someone who mutilates
FALSE: Columbus imposed taxes on the natives; if they did not pay x amount of gold Columbus would cut off their hands
The actual account: Columbus returns on 2nd voyage to find his settlement destroyed.
Columbus captures the Carib chieftains who destroyed his settlement and were enemies of the Taino Chief Guacanagari
Columbus brokers a mutual pact that suits both sides. Carib marauders were not killed and can continue to live on the island, in peace, and get protection of Spanish crown in exchange for “a large hawk’s bell of gold dust.”
Columbus even modified the pact by halving the required gold dust. And if the Caribs could not provide the gold, it could be substituted for something else like cotton.
Tokens were given to the Carib marauders when they made their pittance. “Any who did not have a token was to be punished.” Nothing about cutting off hands, ears, noses or other body parts.
Bartolome de las Casas notes that the punishment was “a mild one”
Columbus’ “punishments” ranged from a verbal apology from the offender, to a few hours of detainment on his ship before letting him free, to the most severe: shuttling the offender back to Spain to stand trial; and that was for the worst offenders like the marauding Caribs that destroyed the Navidad settlement and those that set fire to a hospital killing 40 settlers.
How did Columbus treat the Spanish Hidalgos who caused trouble?
Ex: Adrian de Mojica with the assistance of mayor Roldan initiated atrocities against the Tainos, against the orders of Columbus. Adrian was sentenced to death.
Side Note: It’s this harsh treatment of Hidlagos that caused them to revolt against Columbus, caused the crown to send Bobadilla to investigate what was going on at Hispaniola, Bobadilla arrested Columbus and sent him back to Spain in chains and began his reign of terror on the natives. His reign was continued by Nicholas Ovando.
When de las Casas writes Hidlagos “would cut an indians hand and leave it hanging by a strand of flesh”, this happened under Nicholas Ovando’s rule, but lying revisionist purposefully say it was Columbus that ordered this or that this happened under Columbus’ governorship. ALL LIES.
When Ovando was coming to replace Bobadilla’s command as governor of Hispaniola, de las Casas writes, Bobadilla’s Hidalgos had brought “dogs they had trained to tear Indians to pieces and in such ferocity that Indians feared them more than the devil” There’s an account where a dog savagely tore apart an Indian's intestines but revisionist liars purposefully conflate this atrocity (happened in 1502 by Bobadilla's men) with the "Euro-Taino" alliance use of dogs in the March 1495 conflict with the Carib marauders.
These accounts and further details can be heard on the podcast, including the incident of Margerite.
Columbus constantly reported to crown how Ovando mistreated the Indians.
Columbus petitioned the crown to put a stop to it and succeeded. Thanks to Columbus the crown issued a royal decree that “all the Indians of Hispaniola were to be left free, not subject to servitude, unmolested, and unharmed and allowed to live like freemen under law just like any other in the kingdom of Castile.”