Guide to the Papers Dealing with the Ancestry of Christopher Columbus,
1950-1992
(bulk 1982-1992)

ASF AR 15

Processed by Michael D. Montalbano

American Sephardi Federation

Center for Jewish History

15 West 16th Street

New York, N.Y. 10011

Phone: (212) 294-8350

Fax: (212) 294-8348

Email: info@AmericanSephardiFederation.org or rbelinfante@asf.cjh.org

URL: http://www.sephardi.house/

© September 2009. American Sephardi Federation. All rights reserved.
Center for Jewish History, Publisher.
Electronic finding aid was encoded in EAD 2002 by Michael D. Montalbano in September 23, 2009. Description is in English.

Descriptive Summary

Creator: American Sephardi Federation
Title: Papers Dealing with the Ancestry of Christopher Columbus
Dates:1950-1992
Dates:bulk 1982-1992
Abstract: This research file contains a collection of material concerning the ancestry of Christopher Columbus and documents the debate about his origins and faith. The collection contains various articles, newspaper clippings, correspondence, and a transcript from a radio program.
Languages: The collection is primarily in English , but a few items are in Spanish.
Quantity: 0.5 linear feet
Identification: ASF AR-15
Repository: American Sephardi Federation
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Historical Note

Christopher Columbus (c. 1451 - 1506, May 20) is the Genoese navigator, later colonizer and trader, whose discoveries in 1492 brought the New World into the awareness of the Old World. Until the uncovering of recent reinterpretation of history and discoveries of pre-Columbian Viking settlements he has been credited with the European discovery of the New World. Columbus’ legacy has made him a controversial figure for many. This legacy however is not the only controversy surrounding him. Despite the consensus that he was from Genoa there are numerous theories that place his birth and family in other locations. There are even theories that suggest that what he is a conflation of two or more individuals. In addition to these theories there is debate over Columbus’ faith, with some believing that he was a Roman Catholic Christian and others believing that he was Jewish. This collection contains material on the origins and faith of Christopher Columbus.

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Scope and Content Note

This collection of consists of articles, both published and unpublished, newspaper clippings, correspondence, transcripts, and other items documenting the debate surrounding the origin and faith of Christopher Columbus. The collection was created by the staff of the American Sephardi Federation from a variety of sources. This collection is not the result of the regular activities of the federation but was created as a resource for research into Columbus, in particular his possible Jewish heritage. In addition to the material on Columbus there is a good deal of information regarding the crypto-Jewish community in New Mexico and the American Southwest.

The collection was arranged so that additional material could be added at a later date. Therefore the categories of arrangement were imposed by the archivist processing the collection and did not derive from any pre-affixed arrangement.

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Arrangement

This collection has been divided into five series. Series I and II are organized alphabetically by author’s last name, followed chronologically by date of creation. Series III, IV, and V are organized chronologically.

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Access and Use

Access Restrictions

Collection is open to researchers.

Use Restrictions

There may be some restrictions on the use of the collection. For more information, contact:

American Sephardi Federation, Center for Jewish History, 15 West 16th Street, New York, NY, 10011
email: ASFinquiries@cjh.org

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Related Material

Additional material about Christopher Columbus and his origins can be found in the collections of the Center for Jewish History.

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Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date (if known); Papers Dealing with the Ancestry of Christopher Columbus; E 112 .A7 2001; folder number; American Sephardi Federation.

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Acquisition Information

This collection had been previously compiled by Randall C. Belinfante and Judith Meyers in 2001. Additional material was added, and final arrangement by Michael D. Montalbano in 2009.

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Access Points

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Container List

 

Series I: Articles, 1950-1992

This series is in English.
0.19 linear feet. (3 folders).
Arrangement:

This series contains published and unpublished material. The contents of this series are then organized by author last name, and then chronologically.

Scope and Content:

This series contains published and unpublished articles addressing the origins and faith of Christopher Columbus. The majority of these articles collected are in full-text, however a few are excerpts of larger works.

List of titles in this series include:

Alperin, Charles. Christopher Columbus-a Jew? Columbus, NJ: International Columbian Quincentenary Alliance, 1990.

Anderson, Wilford Raymond. Viking Explorers and the Columbus Fraud: Pros and the Con Man. Chicago, Ill: Valhalla Press, n.d.

Galimir, Mosco. Cristobal Colon: The Discoverer of America: His Origin Other Explorers. New York: Galimir, 1950.

Nectario, Brother M. Juan Colon alias Cristobal Columbus alias Christopher Columbus was a Spanish Jew. New York: Chedney Press, 1971.

Roncari, Alexander. The Columbus Conspiracy. Roncari, 1988.

Sola-Sole, Josep M. ed. The Catalan Contexts of Columbus; proceedings of the third Catalan symposium. New York: Peter Lang, n.d.

Sorkin, Irving M. and A.H. Arkin. A synopsis of the book entitled "Christopher Columbus, a Spanish Nobleman of Royal Birth, Born a Secret Jew. Washington, DC: Sorkin, 1992.

Unknown. Anecdotes of Religious Persuasion of Christopher Columbus. n.p.,n.d.

Unknown. Colón was Jewish and Spanish. n.p., n.d.

Unknown. Geneology of Christopher Columbus born, named Juan Colon in Genova, Mallorca. n.d., n.p.

Unknown. The Life of the Admiral Christopher Columbus by his son Ferdinand. n.p.n.d.

Unknown. The Mystery of the "El Almirante Xueto" Document Which Describes the Origins and Birthplace of Christopher Columbus. n.p., n.d.

Unknown. Profound reasons as to why Columbus could not possibly be of Italian Origin. n.p., n.d.

Unknown. Speculation as to the possible significance of Columbus's Last Will and Testament stipulating that a half a mark of silver be given to a Jew in the ghetto. n.p., n.d.

Unknown. Synopsis of the life of Christopher Columbus born Juan Colom at Felantix Mallorca of converso Xueta parentage. n.d.,n.p.

BoxFolderTitleDate
11Articles - Published (1 of 2) 1950-1992
12Articles - Published (2 of 2) 1950-1992
13Articles - Unpublishedundated
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Series II: Clippings, 1982-1992

This series is in English with some Spanish.
0.12 linear feet. (2 folders).
Arrangement:

This series is arranged alphabetically and chronologically.

Scope and Content:

This series contains newspaper and webpage clippings related to the origins and faith of Christopher Columbus. Of special note is a binder of material from various websites in both English and Spanish that not only covers Columbus but the Spanish in Colonization of the New World and their dealings with the native population.

List of titles in this series include:

Anderson, William R. "The Curious Columbus Confusion." Fortean Times, n.d. pp. 58-62.

Anti-Defamation League. "Voyages to Freedom 1492-1992." The Record, 1992.

Elkin, Judith Laikin. "Columbus, was he or wasn't he." Hadassah Magazine 73, no.5, 1992. pp.49-50.

Fine, Arnold ed., “Rabbi Abraham Ben Samuel Zacuto: He Made Columbus’ Discovery Possible.” The Jewish Press Magazine, February 7, 2003 p., M14.

Frost, Murray "The Signature of Columbus: a Clue to a Jewish Connection." Judaica Philatelic Journal 24, no. 2, Summer, 1988. pp., 2962-2967.

Jacobs, Sidney J. "The enigma of Cristobal Colon.” Liberty. November 19, 1982

Reiter, Ed “A Medal for Christopher Columbus.” New York Times, October 12, 1986, p., H37.

Stam, Gene, “The Jew who discovered America.” Heritage: Florida Jewish News, 1985.

Teltsch, Kathleen “Scholars and descendants uncover hidden legacy of Jews in southwest.”New York Times, November 11, 1990, section 1, p. 30.

Unknown. “Christian on the outside, Jewish on the inside.” Jerusalem Post: International Edition, June 13, 1992 pgs. 12 and 17

Varon, Benno Weiser, "The mystery of Christopher Columbus." Liberty, November 19, 1982.

Ward-Biederman, Patricia. "Ships of sorrow." Los Angeles Times, November 14, 1991, p. 1.

Wilson, Pamela “Columbus portrait discovers new look.” unknown.

BoxFolderTitleDate
14Clippings (1 of 2)undated, 1982-1992
15Clippings (2 of 2)undated, 1982-1992
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Series III: Correspondence, 1982-1992

This series is in English.
0.06 linear feet. (1 folder).
Arrangement:

This series is arranged chronologically.

Scope and Content:

This series contains correspondence concerning the other material in this collection.

BoxFolderTitleDate
16Correspondence1988-1993
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Series IV: Radio Transcript, 1988

This series is in English.
0.06 linear feet. (1 folder).
Arrangement:

This series is arranged chronologically.

Scope and Content:

This series contains the transcript of a radio program by Benjamin Shapiro regarding the crypto-Jews of New Mexico, titled “Search for the Buried Past: The Hidden Jews of New Mexico.”

BoxFolderTitleDate
17Radio Transcript1988
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Series V: Related Material, 1990-1992

This series is in English.
0.06 linear feet. (1 folder).
Arrangement:

This series is arranged chronologically.

Scope and Content:

This series contains various related material to the collection.

BoxFolderTitleDate
18Related Material1990-1992
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