Columbus Day was first a state holiday in Colorado in 1906. Then, urged by the organization Knights of Columbus, congress and president Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared Columbus Day a national holiday. Some sources say 1934, others say the year was 1937. Yet another source, the Congressional Research Services, indicates that Columbus Day may not have become an official federal holiday until 1968. And still another source, World Book Encyclopedia, gives that year as 1971.
Click the link to check out our Biography in Context database to read a wonderfully concise biography of Christopher Columbus.
The Library of Congress web site contains beautiful photos and artwork pertaining to the story of Columbus and his voyages as well as Columbus Day celebrations over time. http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/oct12.html
We have a new biography of Columbus on the shelves this year from the Great Explorers of the World series, but there are many good Christopher Columbus biographies and histories that are wonderful resources for school reports and general interest. Check one out today!