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Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria Facts


Having gotten permission and funds from Ferdinand and Isabella Columbus set about outfitting a little fleet for a trip across the “OceanSea” to find a faster route to China and India.Christopher Columbus departed from Spain on August 3, 1492, on a fleet of three ships: the Nina, the Pinta and the Santa Maria. Nina and Pinta were both smaller, sleeker ships, called caravels. Santa Maria was a larger, round-hulled ship, called a nao. Columbus himself sailed on, and piloted, the Santa Maria. Together, the three ships carried about 120 men, equipment and supplies. How fast did the ships go? Over several days, ships of Columbus’s time would average a little less than 4 knots. Top speed for the vessels was about 8 knots.

Of the three ships, only the Santa Maria was built with a deck, and it was a much slower, heavier ship, with a keel that was about 115-feet long. Both Nina and Pinta were about 50 feet long. All three ships were armed. The Nina sailed under Vicente Yanez Pinzon, and the Pinta sailed under his brother, Martin

Alonso Pinzon.

Nina Ship

The Niña was one of the three ships used by Christopher Columbus in his first voyage towards the Indies in 1492. The name Niña was probably a pun on the name of her owner, Juan Niño of Moguer. She was a caravel-type vessel.

Facts about the Nina Ship
Class and type: Caravel, a caravel had a shallower draft than a nao, so it could move around in the water more easily.
Name: The real name of the Niña was Santa Clara
Captain: On Columbus’s first expedition, the Niña carried 24 men, captained by Vicente Yáñez Pinzón.

Crew of the Nina Ship

  • García Alonso
  • Maestre Alonso, physician
  • Juan Arias, cabin boy
  • Juan Arraes
  • Pero (Pedro) Arraes
  • Bartolomé García, boatswain
  • Alonso Gutiérrez Querido
  • Andrés de Huelva
  • Diego Lorenzo
  • Rodrigo Monge (Monte)
  • Alonso de Morales, carpenter
  • Francisco Niño
  • Juan Niño, Owner and Master
  • Pero (Pedro) Alonso (Peralonso) Niño, pilot
  • Juan Ortíz
  • Gutiérrez Pérez
  • Vicente Yáñez Pinzón, Captain
  • Bartolomé Roldán, apprentice pilot
  • Juan Romero
  • Sanco Ruíz (de Gama?)
  • Pero (Pedro) Sánches (Sánchez)
  • Miguel de Soria, servant
  • Pedro de Soria
  • Fernando de Triana

Pinta Ship

La Pinta was the fastest of the three ships used by Christopher Columbus in his first voyage across the Atlantic Ocean in 1492. The New World was first sighted by Rodrigo de Triana on the Pinta on October 12, 1492.

Facts about the Pinta Ship
Class and Type: Pinta was a caravel-type vessel. A caravel had a shallower draft than a nao, so it could move around in the water more easily.

Name: The actual name of the Pinta is unknown.
Weight: 60 Tons
Length: 66 Feet
Width: 23 Feet
Crew Size: The crew size was 26 men.
Captain: Captain of the Pinta was Martín Alonso Pinzón.

Crew of the Pinta Ship

  • García Alonso
  • Pedro de Arcos, from Palos
  • Bernal, servant
  • Diego Bermúdez
  • Juan Bermúdez
  • Antón (Antonio) Calabrés
  • Maestre Diego, surgeon
  • Christóbal García Xalmiento (Jalmiento, Sarmiento), pilot
  • Bartolomé García
  • Francisco García Gallego
  • Francisco García Vallejo
  • García Hernández (Fernández), steward
  • Juan de Jérez (Xéres), from Palos
  • Fernando Méndes (Méndez, Mendel)
  • Francisco Méndes (Méndez, Mendel)
  • Alonso de Palos
  • Alvaro Pérez
  • Gil Pérez
  • Juan Pérez Viscaino
  • Martín Alonso Pinzón, Captain
  • Francisco Martín Pinzón, Master
  • Diego Martín Pinzón
  • Juan Quadrado
  • Christóbal Quintero, Owner
  • Juan Quintero
  • Gómez Rascón
  • Juan Reynal
  • Juan Rodríquez Bermejo
  • Pedro Tegero (Tejero, Terreros?)
  • Rodrigo de Triana
  • Juan Veçano (Vezano)
  • Juan Verde de Triana

Santa Maria Ship

The Santa Maria de la Inmaculada Concepción, was the largest of the three ships used by Christopher Columbus in his first voyage. Her master and owner was Juan de la Cosa. The Santa Maria was a nao, the flagship of the Columbus fleet. It was a merchant ship, between 200-600 tons.

Facts about the Santa Maria Ship
Class and type: Nao
Tons burthen: 223 tons
Length: 22.6 m
Beam: 3 m
Draught: 2.1 m
Propulsion: sail
Complement: 40
Armament: 4 x 90 mm Bombards, 50 mm culebrinas

First Crew

  • Christopher Colombus, Captain
  • Juan de la Cosa, maestre (Santoña)
  • Sancho Ruiz, piloto
  • Alonso Pérez Roldán, piloto
  • Maestre Alonso, físico, de Moguer
  • Maestre Diego, contramaestre
  • Rodrigo Sánchez de Segovia, veedor
  • Pedro Gutiérrez, repostero de estradas del Rey
  • Rodrigo de Escobedo, Scrivener
  • Diego de Arana, Master-at-arms, (Córdoba)
  • Diego Lorenzo, Master-at-arms
  • Luis de Torres, Interpreter
  • Domingo de Lequeitio
  • Lope, calafate
  • Jacome el Rico, (Genoa)
  • Pedro Terreros, maestresala
  • Rodrigo de Jerez, (Ayamonte)
  • Ruiz García, (Santoña)
  • Rodrigo de Escóbar
  • Francisco de Huelva
  • Rui Fernández (Huelva)
  • Pedro de Soria
  • Pedro de Bilbao, (Larrabezua).
  • Pedro de Villa, del Puerto
  • Diego de Salcedo, criado de Colón
  • Pedro de Acevedo, paje

Brief Timeline of the Voyage of the Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria

Aug 3, 1492: The Niña, Pinta and the Santa María sail from Palos, Spain.
Aug 12, 1492: The ships reach the Canary Islands.
Sept 9, 1492: Sailing westward, the ships loose sight of land at nightfall.
Sept 30, 1492: Ships complete 3 weeks travel with no sight of land.
Oct 7, 1492: A mistaken shout of “Land Ho” brings great disappointment.
Oct 10, 1492: Sailors are on the point of mutiny.
Oct 12, 1492: Columbus discovers America when land is sighted.
Dec 24, 1492: Columbus’ flagship, the Santa María is wrecked off Cap Haïtien.
Jan 16, 1493: The Niña and Pinta begin their homeward voyage.
Feb 8, 1493: The 2 ships are hit by strong headwinds.
Feb 12, 1493: A storm threatens the Niña.
Feb 13-14, 1493: The 2 ships are separated by the storm
Feb 15, 1493: The Niña arrives at Santa María island in the Azores and waits 10 days before leaving without the Pinta.
March 3, 1493: The Niña arrives at Lisbon and stays there 10 days.
March 15, 1493: The Niña returns to its home port, Palos.

The Nina, The Pinta, The Santa Maria Song

Children’s Song Lyrics by Ben Stiefel

Chorus
The Nina, The Pinta, The Santa Maria
Add ‘em up – a-one, two, three-uh
Sailin’ high – Sailin’ low – See Columbus go, go, go
The Nina, The Pinta, The Santa Maria
Add ‘em up – a-one, two, three-uh
Sailin’ high – Sailin’ low – See Columbus go, go, go

The Santa Maria had three masts
A slow, large ship – not too fast
The Pinta was of medium size
It was smaller and faster – my, oh my
(repeat chorus)

The Nina was the smallest ship
It was fastest of all, that’s pretty hip
Together the three ships sailed away
They traveled about a hundred miles each day

The Nina, The Pinta, The Santa Maria
Add ‘em up – a-one, two, three-uh
Sailin’ high – Sailin’ low
See Columbus go, go, go

Nina – Pinta – Santa Maria – Sailin’ free-uh
Nina – Pinta – Santa Maria – Sailin’ free-uh
(instrumental solo)

The Nina, The Pinta, The Santa Maria
Add ‘em up – a-one, two, three-uh
Sailin’ high – Sailin’ low – See Columbus go, go, go
Sailin’ high – Sailin’ low – See Columbus go, go, go