On 10th May 1881, Barcelona City Council agreed to erect the monument as a tribute to Christopher Columbus, who chose to disembark in the port of Barcelona on his return from America.
A competition was held and 27 projects were presented. The architect Gaietà Buhigas was the winner. The foundation stone was laid on 26th September 1882, during the reign of Alfonso XII, in the presence of the city’s authorities and a committee from Genoa City Council. The monument was dedicated on 1st June 1888, as part of the ceremonies marking the Universal Exhibition. The dedication was presided over by the Queen Regent, Maria Cristina, and representatives of the King of Italy, Humbert I, the President of the United States, Grover Cleveland, and Genoa City Council were also present.
Do you know 10 things about Columbus Monument?
1. Columbus’s finger is 50 centimeters long
2. His left foot measures 1,13 meters and his right foot 1 meter.
3. The statue is 7,70 meters high, 2,50 meters wide and weighs 42.000 kilos.
4. The column is 51,30 meters high and 2,25 meters in diameter.
5. It took nearly a year to cast the iron column, which weighs 205.000 kilos.
6. The monument measures 60 meters from the top to the base, and weighs 233.000 kilos.
7. The monument cost 1.036.228 Pesetas to build (6.227,86 Euro).
8. It took seven years to build.
9. More than 10 sculptors took part in the project.
10. The first lift inside the column was hydraulic.
Photos: Enric Boixadós