Rare letter by Columbus on view at Pequot Library program
Updated 4:23 am, Thursday, December 3, 2015
The letter, dating to 1493 and part of the Pequot Library’s special collections on loan to Yale University, will be displayed during the program set for 5 p.m. at the library, 720 Pequot Ave.
The letter, in which Columbus recounts his 1492 expedition to the Americas, will be returned to the Pequot for the day in conjunction with its current exhibition, “Exploring America: Christopher Columbus,” which runs through Jan. 15.
The original letter was ostensibly written in 1493 by Columbus himself, according to library publicity for the event, and then translated and typeset for broader distribution. Those copies, the library said, were instrumental in spreading news about Columbus's voyage.
The Pequot’s copy, dated April 29, 1493, which is translated into Latin, has been on loan to Yale for more than six decades. It provides few details about the voyage, but makes note of “native inhabitants for their docility and amenability, while vividly describing the geography and bounty of his discovery,” according to the library. Columbus also urges royal patrons to sponsor a second, larger expedition to “the Indies,” promising to bring back riches.
The “Columbus Letter Comes Home” event is free for Friends of the Pequot Library at the $250-and-above giving level, or $40 per person general admission. To register online, go to www.pequotlibrary.org . For more information, call 203-259-0346, ext. 15.