Christopher Columbus stopped in the Cape Verde Islands off the coast of Africa on his voyage west to find a shorter route to the Indies. He was emboldened in his daring journey by news from the islanders that Africans had been known to set off into the ocean going west in canoes from the coast of West Africa. When Columbus arrived in the Caribbean islands, he found dark-skinned people who traded with the Indians. He also found Native Americans who told him they had traded gold with Black men who came across the ocean from the southeast. In his diaries, Columbus suggested these dark-skinned peoples hailed from the coast of Guinea, in what is now West Africa. Here is an interesting article that references this topic, entitled African Presence In America Before Columbus.Note: All excerpts borrowed from 1001 Things Everyone Should Know About African American History by Jeffrey C. Stewart, solely for the intents and purposes to inform and educate.