Tag Archives: Jamaican-bosses

A Tribute to a Man of Substance- Epitaph to Joshua Austin Reid

Joshua Austin Reid's "Badge" photo from his work file with the Panama Canal.  It is dated 1919.

Joshua Austin Reid’s “Badge” photo from his work file with the Panama Canal. It is dated 1919.

Like Mr. Joshua Reid there were many more Jamaican bosses, some who had come before him and there would be many others who would follow after his death in 1929. They were men who labored in the complete trust and hope that their labor would be recognized as a contributory factor in the making of the modern country of Panama. Continue reading

Joshua Austin Reid- From Dispensary Director to New Dangers

The former Gorgas Hospital atop Ancon Hill in Panama. Image thanks to Panamacz.com

Image thanks to Panamacz.com

Although the widow Reid did not elaborate much on the issue of my grandfather’s employment, Joshua Reid seemed always to occupy a position of leadership in the community. As Director of the Silver Roll Employees’ Dispensary he was also responsible for overseeing Public Health in those parts of the segregated Panama Canal Zone and as director one of his important duties was the identification and control of vectors against all sicknesses. Continue reading

A Tribute to My Grandfather, Joshua Austin Reid

Image was taken from a colorized postcard of an early ambulance from Ancon Hospital. The white man was a policeman and the body that is being transported in the ambulance was probably a recently deceased Silver worker. My grandfather, Joshua Austin Reid, as Dispensary Director, often sent the ambulances he supervised on mortuary calls.sent the ambulances he supervised on mortuary calls.

Joshua Austin Reid's "Badge" photo from his work file with the Panama Canal.  It is dated 1919.

Joshua Austin Reid’s “Badge” photo from his work file with the Panama Canal. It is dated 1919.

Probably no one will remember Mr. Joshua Austin Reid and his exploits as I would; no, not even his beloved wife. My grandmother, Fanny, was able to arrive in Panama and enjoy life without fear of dying in her sleep for herself and, later on, her children in large part thanks to the monumental clean up and construction exploits of men like grandfather Joshua. Continue reading

The Silver Townships- Paraiso, CZ Part I

Images: Top: an early colorized postcard image of an ambulance
similar to the type my grandfather,
Joshua Reid, might have supervised.

Bottom: Paraiso Dredging Division about 1920.
Images thanks to www.czimages.com

I consider my grandfather, Joshua Reid, as my first link to the Silver town of Paraiso. One of the legendary “White West Indians” (he was a fair skinned Mulatto from Easington, Jamaica on the south-eastern coast) he arrived in Panama in 1906 and immediately found work. His first job was in the “Cuts” as one of the Jamaican Bosses and he supervised the distribution of supplies all the way to the Atlantic coast. Continue reading