This collection is comprised of books, pamphlets,
documents, correspondence, press clippings, maps, reports, periodicals, photographs,
and other material pertaining to the history and culture of the Panama Canal, the
Canal Zone, and the Republic of Panama. Materials document a wide spectrum of
subjects, including the exploration and construction of a Central American isthmian
canal, the administrative and bureaucratic structure of the Canal Zone, tourism in
Panama, residential life in the Canal Zone, and the political relationship between
the United States and the Republic of Panama. A substantial amount of the collection
is also devoted to the historical and literary study, and journalistic
documentation, of both the Panama Canal and the Republic of Panama. In addition, the
collection contains the personal papers of Adrien and Jean Bouché and those of Art
Mokray, a resident of the Republic of Panama.
After early explorations failed to uncover a natural waterway across Central America
from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean, numerous plans, schemes, and financial
arrangements were developed for digging a canal. In 1869, President Ulysses S. Grant
instructed the Chief of the Bureau of Navigation to organize expeditions for
surveying possible isthmian canal routes. These surveys were made during the period
1870-1875 by Navy personnel, and on March 15, 1872 the President appointed an
Interoceanic Canal Commission to appraise the survey reports. On February 7, 1876,
the Commission announced a unanimous decision in favor of a route across
44.49 linear feet
(52 boxes, 1 map case folder)
Copyright has not been assigned to the University of California, Riverside Libraries, Special Collections & University Archives.
All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Director of Distinctive
Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Regents of the University of California as the owner of
the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained
by the researcher.
The collection is open for research.