Susanna Fontanarossa (1435 - 1489)

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Birthplace: Via Bisagno, Uscio, Liguria, Italy
Death: Died in Genoa, Genova, Liguria, Italy
Managed by: Hector R. Cuprill, Jr.
Last Updated:

About Susanna Fontanarossa

Susanna Fontanarossa (?-?) (Susanna of Fontarossa) was the mother of Cristoforo Colombo, a Genoese wool weaver commonly believed to have been Christopher Columbus, the famous navigator and explorer who was generally credited as a discoverer of the Americas. Almost nothing is known about her before her marriage to Domenico Colombo in 1445. She bore 5 children to Domenico: Cristoforo, Bartolomeo, Giovanni, Giacomo, and a daughter named Bianchinetta.

A notarised document of sale in the Genoa state archive contains the Latinate text «Sozana,(quondam) de Jacobi de Fontana Rubea, uxor Dominici de Columbo de Ianua ac Christophorus et Pelegrinus filii eorum», which can be translated as "Susanna was (the daughter) of Giacomo from Fontanarossa of the Bisagno, wife of Domenico Columbus from Genoa, their sons are Cristoforo and Pellegrino." The Val Bisagno was a significant inland district in the ancient Republic of Genoa including the valley of the river Bisagno. Thus she was described as 'Susanna from Fontanarossa' within the Val Bisagno, rather than Suzanna Fontarossa.

Today the hilltop village of Fontanarossa, Goretto, Genova, Liguria, in the Val Trebbia (20 miles inland of Genoa, at 44°35′10.66″N 9°15′18.80″E) and only 4 miles beyond the watershed of the river Bisagno), has a marble stone with the inscription Susanna Fontanarossa, the mother of Christopher Columbus, was born in this village. ("In questo borgo nacque Susanna Fontanarossa, madre di Cristoforo Colombo."). The village records state that she may have been born in the hamlet of "Le Ferriere".

Little is known about her after 1484. She died before her husband, Domenico.

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Susanna Fontanarossa's Timeline

1435
1435
Uscio, Liguria, Italy
1448
1448
Age 13
Genova, Liguria, Italia
1450
1450
Age 15
1451
August 24, 1451
Age 16
Beja, Beja District, Portugal

Genoa, Italy

1451
Age 16
Genoa, Genoa, Liguria, Italy
1455
1455
Age 20
Genoa,
1464
1464
Age 29
Genova, Liguria, Italia
1468
1468
Age 33
Genova, Liguria, Italia
1470
1470
Age 35
Genoa
1477
1477
Age 42
Genova, Liguria, Italia