Today is Columbus Day for 2012, the date this entry was first posted.
At least in my part of the country, Columbus Day has declined to the point of being practically a non entity, as far as observed holidays are concerned. Nothing happens to note it, other than that I think it is a Federal holiday and Federal services are halted. Some state ones used to be, but I know that various state offices have, for many years, been given the option of omitting the holiday in exchange for taking the day after Thanksgiving off.
To our south, in Colorado, this day has sometimes been the source or real controversy, however, even in modern times, as American Indians have used it to make a counter observance noting the harm inflicted upon them by European Americans starting in 1492.
The day itself was first observed in Colorado as a state holiday staring in 1906, and became a Federal holiday in 1937. It's a floating holiday that always occurs on the second Monday of October.
Today is also Canadian Thanksgiving Day, a national holiday in Canada since 1879. Thanksgiving being a holiday centered on the harvest, the earlier Canadian date, as opposed to the later American date, makes sense. The current floating holiday was established as the second Monday of October in 1957.
1821 James Long Texas forces surrendered to Mexican forces commanded by Colonel Juan Ignacio Pérez at La Bahía. Attribution: On This Day.
1835 John Allen Campbell, Governor of Wyoming Territory from 1869 to 1875, born in Salem Ohio. As Territorial Governor,. Campbell was a career soldier up until his appointment as Governor, and later became a counsel to Switzerland. He signed the bill granting Wyoming's women the right to vote.
1838 The Battle Creek Fight, also known as the Surveyor's Fight, occurred between surveyors and Indians at In Navarro County, Texas. Attribution: On This Day.
1867 John S. Casement, railroad contractor and Civil War era general, and post war chief engineer for the Union Pacific, appointed Territorial delegate to Congress.
1889 The brewery in Sheridan burned. Attribution: Wyoming State Historical Society.
1915 The first oil well was drilled in the Elk Basin. Attribution: Wyoming State Historical Society.
1944 200 Washakie County students let out of school to help with the wheat harvest in a war time measure. Attribution: Wyoming State Historical Society.