Queen Isabella I and King Ferdinand II agreed to finance Cristóbal Colón’s goal of finding a sea route across the Atlantic Ocean to the East Indies. Instead, Christopher Columbus discovered the Bahamas in 1492. Three subsequent expeditions claimed more of the New World for the Spanish crown. Unfortunately, the end of his maritime career was marred with claims of tyranny, imprisonment and lawsuits against the Catholic Monarchs. Yet his discoveries helped the Spanish Empire generate incredible wealth and world dominance during the 16th and 17th centuries. In 1893, sculptor Jerónimo Suñol created this white marble monument. The Christopher Columbus tribute was erected at a roundabout called Plaza de Colón to celebrate the 400th anniversary of his first voyage to America.