Have you ever wondered about Columbus’ voyages? Have you ever imagined yourself sailing along with them, eating only an ounce of salted meat and drinking a glass of wine a day? I was always fascinated by the first explorers and got excited to go to Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History in Texas. It is an amazing place.
Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History teaches you an early American history. My favorite part was the tour of Columbus ships. Sadly, you will only get to see exact life-size replicas of Santa Maria and Pinta. La Nina is currently undergoing repairs at the local shipyard.
The ships were given to the museum by Spain because of the 500th Anniversary of Columbus’ voyage to the New World. They were made from the same materials and using the same techniques as ship builders were using in the 1400s. Today replicas of Columbus’ ships are in poor shape. The tour guide said it is because of their age. They are very old for this type of ships and an average life of a ship in the 1400s was about 10 years, after that they were usually taken apart and their wood was utilized in construction of houses or for other needs. For example, the timbers from the original Santa Maria after her wreck in 1492 were used to build a fort, La Navidad, on the island of Haiti.
During my tour in the museum I learned that Columbus sailed 4 times to the New World. I also found out that the crew constantly had to pump water out of the low deck to keep the ship afloat. Columbus’ ships didn’t have steering wheels (they were invented later), instead a strong man had to turn a heavy, wooden rudder to turn the ship in the right direction. I think that the most interesting fact was that after Columbus died in Valladolid, Spain, at the age of 54, his travels were not over. His body was reburied several times and no one actually knows where Columbus really lies.
Christopher Columbus had once said, “Life has more imagination than we carry in our dreams!” I think history has proved his words. Columbus had not find China, but a new land that turned out to be a continent of America and this discovery changed the face of the world forever. In the Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History you can find a big exhibit about the Columbian Exchange and its influence on our world. It is not over like many people think. We still discover isolated Indian tribes in the remote jungles of the Amazon and the Columbian Exchange continues. I would recommend to visit Corpus Christi Museum of Science and History. It is a magnificent place.