Congressional Record — October 9, 1875
(Mr. OTTINGER asked and was given permission to extend his remarks at this point in the RECORD and to include extraneous matter.) Mr. OTTINGER. Mr. Speaker, today I am introducing legislation which would confer honorary citizenship upon the great world explorer, Christopher Columbus.
It was the genius of Christopher Columbus, reflecting the genius of his Italian heritage, which led to the discovery and settlement of America. In so doing, he altered, irrevocably, the course of human history.
It has been observed that the Columbus expedition was multinational in character, and so it was-an Italian captain, commanding Spanish vessels, guided by a Negro pilot reading Portuguese charts. Yet it was the influence of Columbus that was to predominate, and it was in keeping with his pioneering efforts that all the other magnificent European explorations of that period were later launched.
For more than 4½ centuries since that time, the name of Christopher Columbus has been honored, throughout the world, by people of vision, courage, and imagination. Of all the brave explorers in history, none can be said to have exceeded Columbus in daring, skill, and perseverance.
It is difficult to overstate the importance of the Columbian expedition of 1492. Within a few years thereafter an astounding change came over Europe. It was noted by an observer of the time that Men are no longer sighing after the imaginary golden age that lay in the distant past, but speculating as to the golden age that might possibly lle In the oncoming future.
Regathering her strength, England recovered, suddenly, from the fratricidal Wars of the Roses. The church put its house in order. Italy, France, and Prussia were revitalized by a flow of new ideas. The colonizers of America were inspired by Columbus as they opened up the new world.
Thus it is a most fitting tribute that we commemorate this great world figure, Christopher Columbus, as we near the national holiday we have established in his name, by recognizing him as an honorary citizen of the United States of America.
The resolution follows:
H.J. Res. 701 Joint resolution to confer honorary U.S. citizenship upon Christopher Columbus Whereas Christopher Columbus Is recognized as one of the greatest explorers in world history; Whereas the United States has recognized the extraordinary accomplishments of Christopher Columbus by establishing & national holiday in his name; and Whereas 1t is Atting and proper for this Nation to further commemorate this individual who so greatly contributed to the history of mankind, by recognizing him as an honorary citizen of the United States: Now, therefore, be 1t Resolved by the Senate and House of Rep-
resentatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That honorary United States citizenship is hereby conferred upon Christopher Columbus.