Learn about this holiday that goes back 3000 years.
Covers the period from 1565-1880: From the first Spanish explorers in North America to the Mexican-American War in 1848.
From 1880-1940, the U.S. Latino population increased, especially in cities like Los Angeles, New York and Miami.
Latinos serve in the American armed forces beginning in the 1940s, but still face discrimination in their own country.
Immigration from Puerto Rico,Cuba and the Dominican Republic increases from the 40s through the 60s, as new arrivals seek economic opportunities.
As Latino labor unions organize in California, they also push for improved educational opportunities and political inclusion.
Video courtesy of National Geographic.com
Spain and Native American Slavery
Although he was an expert sea navigator, Columbus' administration of the Spanish colonies in the New World resulted in cruel treatment of the native peoples.
Queen Isabella insisted that the natives be treated with respect and kindness, but Columbus didn't follow her instructions. For years, the Spanish settlers used Indian slaves as free labor. In 1538 Charles V officially outlawed enslaving native peoples. Pope Paul II threatened excommunication to any Catholics found enslaving Indians in the New World.
Many cities have decided to celebrate Indigenous Peoples Day instead of Columbus Day. Some people dispute the idea that Columbus "discovered" America, since Native Americans had already lived in North and South America for thousands of years before his arrival.