"Central America - Isthmus of Panama Showing the Proposed Panama Canal and the Railway", British Admiralty
Period: 1885 (dated)
Color: Black & White
25.1 x 18.7 inches
63.8 x 47.5 cm
This British Admiralty chart was published four years after construction had begun on the Panama Canal by French diplomat Ferdinand de Lesseps. The initial construction of the canal by the French began in 1881 and was abandoned in 1889 as a result of bankruptcy and a high mortality rate among workers due to disease and accidents. As a result of the bankruptcy, the French sought a buyer for the assets and rights related to the canal. In 1902 the United States purchased the rights to continue construction of the canal, which was finally completed in 1914. The map also shows the Panama Canal railway, which was built by American investors between 1850-55, and was integral in the building of the canal years later. The chart shows the extreme topography between Panama City and Colon and gives good hydrographical detail of the surrounding bays. Engraved by Edward Weller and sold by J.D. Potter.
A dark impression on a sturdy sheet with one short tear at top that has been archivally repaired and a few extraneous creases at far right.