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This is a typical board building tenement
that still exists in the poorer “Barrio” neighborhoods
of Panama City. This one is among several in
this area of Santana, slated for
demolition soon.

It was not until the decade that began with the year of 1940 in which an event such as the devastating fire that would virtually destroy the Atlantic coast city of Colon, that I would awake to who I really was in the world into which I had been born. Continue reading

The Panama Canal Zone Police- Part II

Penitentiary at Culebra 1908. Image thanks to the National Archives.

There have been several theories suggested for the relative peace and order that existed in the Canal Zone. The “effectiveness of the police forces and the low level of serious crime”, according to Michael Conniff,* could have been linked to “the British claim to have taught their subjects respect for law and order. Secondly, the work regime of 60 hours a week kept the men under close watch during their waking hours and left little time or energy for getting into trouble afterwards. Third, the summary,” and, many times, arbitrary,” justice meted out by U.S. and Panamanian courts was so harsh as to be a ‘positive’ restraint.”* Continue reading