By Matthew Parker
The Panama Canal used to be the most expensive venture in historical past; its crowning glory in 1914 marked the start of the “American Century.” Panama Fever attracts on modern bills, bringing the adventure of these who outfitted the canal vividly to existence. Politicians engaged in high-stakes international relations that allows you to effect its building. in the meantime, engineers and employees from worldwide rushed to use excessive wages and the opportunity to join background. jam-packed with impressive characters, Panama Fever is an epic historical past that exhibits how a small, fiercely contested strip of land made the area a smaller position and introduced the period of yankee international dominance.
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Extra info for Panama Fever: The Epic Story of the Building of the Panama Canal (Vintage)
Blundell Trust, administered by the Society of Authors, for their generous contribution to the research expenses of this book. Many people in a number of countries have helped me. For my research trips to the United States I am indebted to the staff of the New York Public Library, the Library of Congress, and the National Archives, in particular Jackie Cohen, who went far beyond the call of duty in guiding me through the enormous amount of material—particularly the French records—held at NARA. I was also well looked after in the United States by Peter Sollis and his family in Washington and by Ben and Louise Edwards in New York.
In the same year, however, the British were establishing control over a section of the Nicaraguan coast through an alliance with the Mosquito Indians, who refused to recognize Spanish sovereignty. It was not a coincidence that this gave the British control over the mouth of the San Juan River, and therefore the Atlantic terminus of any future Nicaraguan canal. But France still made the running—over the next twenty years no fewer than four French trans-Isthmian canal proposals were made. With the independence of Gran Colombia,* officially declared on November 28, 1821, the dead hand of Spanish rule was at last removed, and a major barrier to the construction of a canal disappeared at the same time.
S. Navy, and by promised payments from the federal government for carrying mail and officials to and from the West Coast. Crucially, they were also protected by the Bidlack Treaty. With the interior of the United States largely unsettled and un-pacified, the Isthmus was seen in Washington as a key strategic artery linking the two coasts of the country. Aspinwall also had a plan for a railway across the Isthmus, and with the gold rush in full swing there was new impetus to start the construction straightaway.