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World History

Mr. McGarry/Mr. McNamara

Age of Exploration Unit
Discovery Debate

Who Discovered America: Christopher Columbus or Leif


Courtroom officials roles descriptions:

Judge- the judge is the person who is in charge of the courtroom. The
judge enters the courtroom last and sits before all other members of
the court, witnesses or defendants. The judge maintains order in the
court with verbal orders, the use of a gavel or by directing the two
bailiffs to add or remove people from the courtroom. The judge does
not decide guilt or innocence- the jury does that. The judge can direct
people to approach the witness stand and dismiss them from the
witness stand. The judge can either let an objection from the lawyers
be allowed (sustained) or not be allowed (overruled). The judge
dismisses the jury from the courtroom at the end of the trial (after the
verdict has been read by the jury) by saying this court is adjourned.

Bailiffs- the two bailiffs are the law enforcement representatives of

the court. They ensure that the courtroom is a safe atmosphere for the
trial to continue. If court officials, witnesses, defendants, or any other
person gets too loud or out of control, the judge will direct the bailiff to
removed that person out into the hall. The bailiffs ensure that all rise
before the judge enters the courtroom to show respect to the judge.
They then instruct everyone to be seated once the judge takes his/her
seat. The bailiff is also responsible for swearing in any
witnesses/defendants who take the witness stand. They will have the
witness place their right hand on the history book and ask the witness:
Do you promise to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the
truth, so help you God? The witnesses respond I do and then takes
their seat on the witness stand. The bailiffs may escort any witness to
the witness stand who needs assistance.

Court reporter- The court reporter is responsible for keeping a

written record of all the important information presented at the trial.
You may use handwritten notes or preferably typed notes using a
computer, tablet or laptop. You will make a heading for each part of
the trial (Example: Opening argument- Columbus attorneys, or Cross
Examination of Leif Erikson, or Closing Arguments Columbus
attorneys). Record all the important main ideas or points that each
lawyer makes. If any witness makes an important statement of fact,
include that as well. Also record if anyone presents a map or piece of
evidence. You will email that document to your teacher and a copy of
the trial record will be printed out for the jury to use to deliberate once
both cases have been presented.

Jurors- Jurors have the most important job of all. They must decide
whether a person is innocent or guilty, or in this case whether or not
they were truly the first European to discover North America. Jurors
will listen to all testimony and see all physical evidence presented by
both teams of lawyers. After both cases have been presented, the
jurors will be presented with a copy of the trial transcript. The jurors
will then be escorted out of the courtroom and into the hall to
deliberate, or decide who truly discovered America based on the
arguments, testimony, evidence and transcript. Once a decision has
been reached, the jurors will file back into the courtroom and the jury
foreman will read the verdict. (We the people of the jury find that
Christopher Columbus/ Leif Erikson is the true discoverer of America.).
Once the verdict is read, the judge will then dismiss the jury and
adjourn the court.