Columbus Day, holiday commemorating Christopher Columbus's discovery of America. It has been traditionally celebrated on Oct. 12 throughout most of the United States, parts of Canada, and in several of the Latin American republics. In the United States, however, since the observation in 1971 of the Uniform Holiday Act, it is celebrated on the Monday nearest to Oct. 12.
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.