Christopher Columbus’s Ship Santa Maria
Santa Maria was used by Columbus during his first voyage. She was the largest of the three ships used by Columbus but no one has seen this ship. Juan de la Cosa was the owner and master of the ship. The original name of the ship was La Gallega but it was renamed as Santa Maria by Columbus.
Santa Maria was a nao or a ship had three masts namely- fore, main and mizzen. Each of the masts carried a large sail. The foresail and the mainsail were square while the sail on the mizzen was triangular.
The ship was slowest of the three vessels. It was originally built as a merchant ship and it weighted between 200-600 tons. The length of this ship was around 18 meters. During the voyage, Santa Maria ran aground and was thus abandoned by Columbus and his crew.
Pinta Ship of Christopher Columbus
It was a caravel-type vessel and was the fastest of three vessels. The captain of this ship was Martin Alonso Pinzon. Not much information is available about Pinta. It is believed that Pinta weighed between 60-70 tons and its length
was about 17 meters. It is also assumed that she had three masts.
Nina Ship of Christopher Columbus
Nina was the smallest of three ships. Vicente Añes Pinzón was the captain of this ship. The owner of the ship was Juan Nino. The weight of the ship is believed to have been around 50 or 60 tons and its length would have been around 15 meters. Nina was a caravel-type vessel.
She initially had lateen sails on all masts but these were later re-fitted with square sails. After the modification, Nina was the best sailing ship. It is believed that she had four masts.
Where are Nina and Pinta Today?
The replicas of the ships were built were made by the Spanish government. The replica of the ship Nina is used commercially and sails around the world. There are other replicas of the ships as well that are located in different parts of the world.
Did Columbus have a fourth ship?
Columbus was given many more ships other than the three most famous ones after the success of his first voyage. Some of them were Galician, Fraila, San Juan, Cardera, Gutierre, Bonial, Rodgria, Triana, Vieja etc. Most of them were of the caravel kind.
Columbus returned to Spain in Nina and took another ship, the Santa Cruz, with him. Santa Cruz was also nicknamed India.