The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal 1870-1914

 
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The building of the Panama Canal was one of the most grandiose, dramatic, and sweeping adventures of all time. Spanning nearly half a century, from its beginnings by a France in pursuit of glory to its completion by the United States on the eve of World War I, it enlisted men, nations, and money on a scale never before seen. Apart from the great wars, it was the largest, costliest single effort ever mounted anywhere on earth, and it affected the lives of tens of thousands of people throughout the world. Here in all its heartbreak and eventual triumph the epic adventure is brought vividly alive by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of such books as The Johnstown Flood, The Great Bridge, Truman, and John Adams.

Filled with vivid detail and incident, The Path Between the Seas is not only a fact-filled account of an unprecedented engineering feat; it is also the story of the people who were caught up in it -- some to win fame and fortune, others to have their reputations and even their lives destroyed. For many it was the adventure of a lifetime, an adventure whose like will never be seen again. Out of it came a revolution, the birth of a new nation, the conquest of yellow fever, and the expansion of American power.

Told from many viewpoints, this is an account drawn from previously unpublished and undiscovered sources, from interviews with actual participants and their families, from material gathered in Paris, Bogot¨˘, Panama, the Canal Zone, and Washington. It is a canvas filled with memorable people: Ferdinand de Lesseps and his son Charles, trying to repeat de Lesseps's Suez triumph; Jules Verne; Paul Gauguin; Gustave Eiffel; A. T. Mahan and Richard Harding Davis; Senator Mark Hanna; Secretary of State John Hay; the incredible Philippe Bunau-Varilla, "the man who invented Panama"; Dr. William Gorgas; the forgotten American engineer hero John Stevens; Colonel George Washington Goethals; and, above all, Theodore Roosevelt, who "took Panama" in 1903 and left his indelible stamp on the canal.

As informative as it is fascinating, The Path Between the Seas is history told in the grand manner. With novelistic urgency it presents one of the great stories of all time in an account that will remain definitive for many years to come.

With two detailed maps and more than eighty photographs.

On December 31, 1999, after nearly a century of rule, the United States officially ceded ownership of the Panama Canal to the nation of Panama. That nation did not exist when, in the mid-19th century, Europeans first began to explore the possibilities of creating a link between the Atlantic and Pacific oceans through the narrow but mountainous isthmus; Panama was then a remote and overlooked part of Colombia.

All that changed, writes David McCullough in his magisterial history of the Canal, in 1848, when prospectors struck gold in California. A wave of fortune seekers descended on Panama from Europe and the eastern United States, seeking quick passage on California-bound ships in the Pacific, and the Panama Railroad, built to serve that traffic, was soon the highest-priced stock listed on the New York Exchange. To build a 51-mile-long ship canal to replace that railroad seemed an easy matter to some investors. But, as McCullough notes, the construction project came to involve the efforts of thousands of workers from many nations over four decades; eventually those workers, laboring in oppressive heat in a vast malarial swamp, removed enough soil and rock to build a pyramid a mile high. In the early years, they toiled under the direction of French entrepreneur Ferdinand de Lesseps, who went bankrupt while pursuing his dream of extending France's empire in the Americas. The United States then entered the picture, with President Theodore Roosevelt orchestrating the purchase of the canal--but not before helping foment a revolution that removed Panama from Colombian rule and placed it squarely in the American camp.

The story of the Panama Canal is complex, full of heroes, villains, and victims. McCullough's long, richly detailed, and eminently literate book pays homage to an immense undertaking. --Gregory McNamee

Customer Reviews:

  • Great book about an amazing story
    I really enjoyed the history of the canal especially the way it is presented
    in this book....more info
  • Not a page turner but GREAT History
    If you are looking for an exciting page turner that keeps you on the edge of your seat, you probably want to look elsewhere. If you are looking to learn more about why and how one of the marvels of the modern world was built, the driving personal and political forces behind its construction, and the sacrifices made by many people of many nationalities to make this a reality, then this is a book for you.

    Often thought of as Roosevelt's Canal (although at the time many critics saw it has his boondoggle) you get a detailed and well told history of how the French tried, what caused them to fail, the political maneuverings that occurred around a canal, and how ultimately the American succeeded in forming the nation of Panama and the canal.

    It is a long read, but if you want to learn more about a project that clearly shaped the Americas and changed the world, this is the book for you.
    ...more info
  • The BEST history writer
    I always wanted to read more but could never get myself to do it. I had an uncle that was incredibly well read (more than a thousand books) and always admired him. He passed away from stomach cancer but before he did I had an opportunity to talk with him and one of the things I asked was what his favorite book was. He told me it was a tough question but said it would be hard not to pick this book. I bought it on the way home. I found the first hundred pages to be very difficult and almost gave up but couldn't stop thinking about my uncle so I read on and I'm glad I did. This book is amazing. Anyone who finds this book boring or wordy is just not interested in a well crafted account of history. This was a huge engineering feat so don't be surprised if it is a little technical. I'm an engineer so I loved it. David does a remarkable job of making you feel like you are in that time of history. This isn't just about the Panama Canal but about 1870-1914. When you think about what happened during that time it's just mind blowing. The idea of a new republic taking on such an enormous project so far away in the jungles of Panama. I've read all David's books and only wish he would write more. This book started me on the path to reading. For that I owe David a huge thanks....more info
  • Path Between The Seas by David McCullough--brief review
    Great, very long, book with much (sometimes too much) detail. It divides into 3 parts. Part 1 is all about background and the progress of the French in trying to build the Panam¨˘ Canal. That occured before 1900. Part 2 is all about the background and process the United States went through in making its decision to build the canal in Panama (and not in Nicaragua). Part 3 is about the actual building of the canal from the early 1900s until its completion in 1914. I'm so glad I'd read this book before going through the canal recently. Some friends of mine bogged down in Part 1 and didn't get into the rest; so one might consider starting with Parts 2 and 3 (although having the background of Part 1 certainly enriches the total experience). ...more info
  • WELL DOCUMENTED BUT A FEW OVERSIGHTS
    In the avalanche of information found in this book, we have found a few oversights:
    - The 1892-1898 period is skipped, as well as the trial of the contractors working for the Lesseps Company, most important to determine the origin of the fortune of the Bunau-Varilla brothers,
    - It is not correct to affirm that Philippe Bunau-Varilla had been involved in investing in his brother's newspaper, Le Matin; Maurice was the sole owner.
    - It is also incorrect to state that Bunau-Varilla's fortune came "out of a private source that remains something of a mystery." No more! A new book by Gabriel LOIZILLON shows clearly the origin of his fortune.

    David McCullough is nevertheless right when he writes: "It is fair to say that without Bunau-Varilla there would be no Canal at Panama".
    Let him be thanked for recognizing the merits of this great man. ...more info
  • A great book about an ambitious project
    The Panama canal was an essential part of American empire and I expected to hear about that as I read this book. While the focus on empire was not found here a tale of disease and hardship was. The sheer mechanics of building this project were amazing and this is a must read for all technological historians. McCullough weaves a complex tale with ease and the reader cannot wait to find out what happens on the next page. The construction and political decisions will make the reader cringe at times but the eventual triumph will bring a smile to any reader. This is one of the great McCullough books that is often left out but deserves great acclaim. I encourage all to read!...more info
  • God Bless America
    Feb 28, 2008

    Ardsley, PA

    Transiting the Canal in 2005 with my family in our sailboat I wished that I had known more about the canal. THE PATH BETWEEN THE SEAS fits that bill perfectly. I highly recommend this book. It is both an interesting and an easy read.

    My impression at the end was surprise at how little about the actual construction is included in over 600 pages of research and writing. The amazing thing is that there is so much to this story; that the physical construction, while ultimately the real story, is but a part of that story. The book paints a broad picture of the whole canal effort from the Private French Effort and failure through the American purchase and eventual success.

    With the benefit of hindsight it is inconceivable that Ferdinand de Lesepps would attempt to build the canal as a privately funded project. Most of the first half of the story unfolds beneath the backdrop of the incredible costs of the project. Ultimately, these costs along with the tropical diseases overcame the French effort.

    Beyond the gargantuan efforts needed to fund the French Canal is the amazing realization that the work was started without a clear idea of how it was to be completed. In this age of thousand page contracts, imagine starting to dig through the Culebra Cut without any idea of how to cross the Chagres River!

    I was stunned to learn that a decade later even our American effort was begun without a clear idea of how to finish the job. Yes, this was the time of Iron Men: men of vision, courage and audacity.

    The narrative of Panamanian Independence reflects poorly on all involved: the Panamanians, Colombians and American Foreign Policy, but it is not quite fair to pass judgment with 100 years of perspective.

    The medical successes of Dr Gorgas and the Engineering success of Wallace, Stevens, Goethals and their teams should be a source of immense pride for every American and should be a story with which every educated American is familiar.

    De Tocqueville observed: "America is great because America is Good." Our country's efforts in Panama were indeed great and the results of those efforts have resulted in an incalculable good for all of mankind.

    Read this book and make sure your children know this story.

    Semper Fi,
    Joe Rooney...more info
  • Page-turning non-fiction that reads like a novel.
    This the best book I've read in a year. It's 600 pages that is hard to put down. Truth is more interesting than fiction. It's a marvelously well written and human story of a historic epic. Highly recommended for anyone interested in history, engineering or Panama....more info
  • Information of all types
    This is one of the great history books of our time. Mr. McCullough covers all the aspects of one of the amazing engineering feats. From the French to the USA, Columbian to Panamian Independence, engineering to politics this books covers it all.
    All the details you could ask for, but with a narrative style that makes for fascinating reading!...more info
  • Five stars for the abridged version
    What better book to read while you are in Panama than this one. Although I "read" the abridged version and also bought the spanish unabridged version right there in Panama, the book is a fabulous account of history, engineering and determination. The building of the canal was far more difficult than the sea-level Suez Canal, beginning with the French company in 1881, finished by the United States in 1914 and curiously inaugurated the same month the first world war exploded, August 1914. The book provides some interesting insights, such as the formation of Panama with the aid of the United States, the little difference of sea level between the pacific and atlantic, difficulties in the construction of the canal and even how the people dealt with some infections like the malaria and yellow fever, typical diseases of this area. You cannot get bore with this book....more info
  • The Path between The Seas
    The Path Between The Seas by David McCullough is a must read by anyone interested in the history of man's achievements in construction. The author masterfully presents details as to every obstacle that had to be overcome to create a path between the Atlantic Ocean and Pacific Ocean by cutting through the Continental Divide at the Panama isthmus. His coverage of the human aspects of the massive excavation and construction efforts is a great piece of literature commemorating both the engineering genius of many persons and the thousands of lives sacrificed in constructing the canal and its locks system. ...more info
  • Another home run by McCullough!!
    Wow, what can you say but what another home run by David McCullough. He has definetly become my favorite historical writer, hands-down. He brings his subject and characters to life. I have read all of his books to date, and he continues to amaze. This book, like all his others, is so well written that you simply can't put it down. And the subject matter (i.e. the building of the Panama Canal) would be considered boring by most people. But as usual McCullough makes the subject matter interesting, easy to read, and he leaves you wanting more. I look forward to the next book by him!!...more info
  • No Maps, No Photos
    I was extremely disappointed that the Kindle version of this well written book did not include the maps and photos that make the regular edition much more informative and a lot easier to read....more info
  • Details beyond belief
    As another reviewer wrote, if you're looking for a book to keep you glued to the edge of your seat, this is not like the one for you. ON the other hand, if you really want to learn all the details and power plays that went into this adventure this is the book, although it does drag a bit at times. The reader will walk away with a working knowledge of this period of history and the major players, not to mention many of the minor ones....more info
  • A Thorough History
    This book is a very thorough history of the French and US efforts to construct the canal. I had no idea of the extent of the French efforts, nor of the extensive efforts made by the French to promote financing of the project. The sanitation and logistical infrastructure that ultimately had to be put in place for the US effort to succed was mind-boggling. Overall, I enjoyed the book, however the level of detail was at times a bit much....more info
  • Historically his best; entertaining not so good.
    I've always enjoyed the books of David McCullough: Truman, The Johnstown Flood, and The Great Bridge. But none of them prepared me for this experience. McCullough has outdone himself here. Actually the topic has driven him to this higher level. The building of the Panama Canal is an extremely complex story, and McCullough includes every twist, turn, challenge, and triumph in his story telling. Sometimes it seems like way too much detail. Almost every character, and there are hundreds, are physically described in detail, from the cut of their clothes to the style of the facial hair. We're told the numbers on the door of their hotel rooms, the names of the ships they travel in, the number of bolts used, the tons of cement poured, the billions of francs and dollars expended. This long book covers it all. Sometimes it's pretty slow going. But it never bogged down to a point where I closed the book and put it away. Instead, I slogged on through the mud, the jungles, the malaria and yellow fever, the mosquitoes, and the political intrigues. And there are a host of the latter, from the initial French undertaking, to the U.S. takeover of the project, to the debates on the best spot to locate the canal, to the gunboat diplomacy of President Teddy Roosevelt which irreparably tainted America's reputation in Central and Southern America. There are some terrific photographs of the experience included, and two maps. Unfortunately, the latter could have been better with more detail. It's impossible to determine the final route of the canal from either map. Also, a map showing the relationship of Central America to the rest of the hemisphere would have been very helpful. I ended up reading this book with an Atlas at hand. Further, a list of the participants with a brief thumbnail sketch would have been helpful, because of the large cast involved. After reading this book, you will know everything you want to know about this amazing achievement, and probably a lot more, too. McCullough is a master at what he does, and in The Path Between the Seas he has achieved his historical masterpiece, although a tad short on the enjoyment factor.



    ...more info
  • Excellently written, captivating
    I actually read this book for the first time while living in Panama, where I had many opportunities to visit the locations described by McCullough. Not only does the reader get exposed to the monumental challenge and engineering feat of building the canal, but also a rich perspective of the world political scene during that period. You will also come away with a better understanding of the history of Panama. I loaned out my copy many times, unfortunately that was one time too many and I had to purchase a second copy...it's that good of a read!...more info
  • The Path Between the Seas
    In my opinion McCullough's best book and one of the best I have ever read. It goes a wee bit dead in the middle when its all about politics but otherwise its spellbinding and very difficult to put down....more info
  • Fascinating Book
    I am booked on a Panama canal cruise in December 2008. Someone recommended this book to me. At 600 pages, I was a little intimidated by it! Not being really mechanically minded, I was afraid it would be dry and dull. Not in the least. In the first 50 pages I learned more about the Panama canal than I thought possible. I loved this book! So much intriguing information about how it came to be, how many people were involved in it, the huge amount of money invested in it, and on and on, thousands of facts written in a very readable, interesting fashion. Truly a marvel of engineering, this book will make the Panama canal one of the most interesting things you've ever learned about....more info
  • The Path Between the Seas
    For a non-student of history, this is a very good read. It's a real shocker that the Panama Canal was ever built after the financial & physical tradgedies that occured....more info
  • History at it's most enjoyable
    This has been the best non-fiction book I've read in a long time. Meticulously researched, it unfolds like a novel of political intrigue, back room deals, corruption, hype, national exuberance and disappointments, and the limitless potential of forward seeing men. It's also a reminder that this government of ours is often less that straightforward and ethical, a precursor to what is happening in the Middle East as we speak.

    ...more info
  • The Path Between the Seas
    Packed with political intrigue, engineering dreams, disaster, disease, death,deception, dynamite, determination, daring, decision making, and final dominence over jungle, mud, mosquitoes, rock, rain, and river to open the gateway between oceans for all the world....And it is all fully researched history.
    A must read for visitors to the Panama Canal!...more info
  • Definitely recommended
    I found this book incredibly informative. The research that obviously went into it is incredible. I always have the same problem with McCullough's books - they need an editor. About ten percent of this book was superfluous and just didn't fit. Still I enjoyed it greatly!...more info
  • Excellent Read, Fascinating History
    I picked up David McCullough's book "The Path Between the Seas" due to a pending cruise through the Panama Canal. The book and the cruise were fantastic. Given the isolationism of American culture, many Americans are not aware of the role played by Columbia, many Caribbean nations, and particularly France in the history and development of the Panama Canal. Likewise, many are unaware of the role played by the United States in the political upheavals that made the building of the canal possible. One of the things that fascinated me the most was the dedication and suffering of thousands of ordinary laborers: French, Caribbean, and American, who struggled with heat, disease, and poor living conditions to build the canal. McCullough's book concisely captures all aspects of this fascinating story of human vision and endurance....more info
  • A ditchful of superiority
    I've gone through more than half the book. I enjoy it thorougly.
    I didn't know that Americans felt so goddamn superior even 100 years ago. No wonder, unfortunately, that millions hate your guts and mine....more info
  • The Path Between the Seas
    The Path Between the Seas is a 700 page detailed description of the building of the Panama Canal. One must have an interest in the canal and its construction to read all of this with interest. It is a MUST for anyone traveling through the canal. Now, I want to read it in retrospect ( but more slowly)....more info
  • The building of the Panama Canal
    David McCullough's book of the history of the Panama Canal is a well written and researched document on all aspects of the building of the canal, beginning with the French and completed by the United States. One gets a detailed understanding of the political, economic, and social conditions of France and the United States during these years and the people responsible for this engineering feat. McCullough vividly describes the jungles of Panama and the diseases and hardships endured by the workers. He gives great detail on the design and methods used to build the canal. This book offers history at its best. ...more info
  • Panama Visitor
    I am getting ready for my second Panama Canal Cruise. I wanted to read this this book before my first Panama Cruise but didn't get to it. This is a hard read, as there are so many people to keep track of, especially during the French attempt to dig a canal. This is a very interesting part of U S and World History as told in vivid detail by David McCollugh. ...more info
  • Path Between the Seas
    Path Between The Seas : The Creation of the Panama Canal, 1870-1914

    I have just started reading this book. I'm most interested in the first part of the book so that I can better understand why the canal was built since I will be cruising through it in March....more info
  • Book Purchase
    Seller described the used book that I received perfectly. Shipment was expedited. All aspects of the purchase were excellent, just as the seller promised. Thank you...more info
  • The moon landing of 1914
    Apollo 11's moon landing 20 July 1969 was a brilliant human feat. It crowned JFK's eight year effort (twelve years if one starts from Sputnik).

    Fifty-five years earlier the onset of World War I in August 1914 muted an equally radiant exploit: the opening of the Panama Canal. It had taken 39 years (401 years if one starts from Vasco N¨˛?ez de Balboa's trek over the Isthmus in 1513), and involved extraordinary expense (more than the sum of all territorial purchases in US history). Nascent advances in medicine, science, and technology were instrumental, but the project still involved innumerable deaths, a racial divide, and political intrigue worthy of modern best-selling fiction.

    McCullough's reputation as the consummate historian/storyteller is nowhere better advanced than in this work....more info
  • Hmmmm....Another Review of this Great Book!
    Where to Start.....

    There are moments or events in one's life that are "defining" ones, ones that "lead" you somewhere, "enlighten" you, somehow "change" you.

    This book was one of those for me. It took me on a marvelous, and wonderful journey through a lot of history! I came to this book upon the suggestion of a friend, and knew nothing of David McCullough's writings.

    Reading this book, to me, was sort of like "having been there"!! I simply devoured this magnificent volume, relishing every word, and moved on to others of McCullough's output. I voraciously read through "The Great Bridge", "Mornings on Horseback", "Johnstown Flood", "Brave Companions", "John Adams", and "Truman", one directly behind the other. "1776" came out about the time I was halfway through "Truman", so I bought it and read it upon finishing "Truman". I do not recall being so deeply "spell-bound" by an author's works before. David McCullough is a master, and should be given great public recognition for the towering historical books he has written for us. Everyone in High School should have at least "Path Between the Seas" and "Great Bridge" on their Required Reading List so that they are aware/informed concerning what actually went into creating these two World-Wonders.

    Do as I did, get a copy of "Path Between the Seas" and take yourself on one of the most fascinating historical journeys imaginable...you OWE it to YOURSELF! Then, go further with my advice, and pick up a copy of "The Great Bridge" and MARVEL at what went into creating this Awesome, Beautiful, Monument to Human Ingenuity!

    Happy Reading, Folks! ~operabruin...more info
  • Spectacular History
    Wow! What a story! The characters leap out at you from the pages alive and kicking. This book is the definitive work on the Panama Canal, its history, economics, politics, science and engineering. It has been read and quoted by presidents, historians and statesmen. But for a gripping narrative that informs and educates as well as entertains it can't be beat. The author has also provided extraordinary photographs from the era as well as modern charts and graphs that walk the reader through this amazing struggle. Read it during vacation or it will wreck your week....more info
  • How did they do this??
    In November of 1971 I was ordered to Fort Sherman, Canal Zone for jungle operations training. In the two weeks that I was there I learned many things among which are the following:
    1. The Jungle is the King.
    2. Don't mess with the Jungle.
    3. There are mosquitoes in the Jungle and they'll make your life miserable and even give you malaria.
    4. Don't ever get mad at the Jungle. The madder you get the worse off you will be.
    In 1977 I read Mr. McCullough's book about the creation of the Panama Canal. His chronicle on the building of this path between the seas is truly epic. He tells of the failures of Ferdinand de Lesseps in trying to build a sea level canal. He describes T R Roosevelt's desire to build this connect between the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean. Mr. McCullough goes into great depth about the Army Corps of Engineers in the building of the Canal. His take on the excavation of the Culebra Cut is amazing. Personally being on the ground about 60 years later , I consider it a modern day engineering miracle. The density of the jungle and the incredible tropical heat was a large deterrent to any building progress. However in the end it was accomplished.
    Kudos to the U.S.A.. This was their finest hour!! I don't think Mr. Churchill ever realized the magnitude of this accomplishment.
    ...more info
  • Champagne and dynamite

    When gold-struck multitudes began streaming to California in the rush of 1848, a railway across the Isthmus of Panama was built in a hurry to shorten the trip. It was such a success that a ship canal seemed the next logical step. A French company led by the visionary Ferdinand de Lesseps began to plan and raise funds for a canal, and digging commenced in 1882. How much harder could it be than the astounding canal at Suez?

    The French initiative in Panama, at that time a province of Colombia, was dogged by deaths and disease, the relentless jungle climate, the unpredictable Chagres River, and the inadequacy of both planning and technology. The project was largely kept afloat by small investors dreaming of a success equal to Suez, but things fell apart in the early 1890s.

    In The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal 1870-1914, historian David McCullough works his usual magic. The early part of the book is heavy on personalities and politics, light on engineering; but McCullough turns it into a fascinating tale. The serious digging began when the United States bought out the French interests, got involved in a Panamanian insurrection, and signed a treaty (later shown to have no legal standing) giving them rights to the corridor where France had been digging. In 1904 President Teddy Roosevelt appointed John Findlay Wallace as Chief Engineer and sent him to Panama with orders to "make the dirt fly." John Stevens took over in 1905 and began by organizing housing and transport, and most importantly, drastically reducing the incidence of yellow fever and malaria. When Stevens left the project in 1907, Roosevelt appointed George Goethals to the Chief Engineering post; Goethals completed the monumental project in 1914.

    This book is history done well. From politics to public health, from Manifest Destiny to mudslides, from Senate debates to steam shovels, from excavation to electricity--McCullough's in-depth research and storytelling flair will keep you up late reading, as surely as any thriller from the fiction shelves. The dream of a 50-mile canal joining the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans was bold; the determination and sheer hard work involved in completing the project makes a truly fascinating tale.

    Linda Bulger, 2009...more info
  • The Path Between the SeasVery interesting
    Very interesting and detailed history. Since I plan on visiting the Panama Canal soon, this book has greatly enlightened me as to all the engineering, building and political problems that went into and preceeded it's construction. I expect it will increase my enjoyment of the canal. ...more info
  • History as a Business Aid
    I fully expected to enjoy reading McCullough's historical overview because I liked his style in 1776 and other books.

    What was unexpected was the story's value as a business book, too.

    McCullough uses frequent mentions of actual companies and brands to remind us of the important contributions of the private sector in this engineering innovation.

    From Chapter 1
    Stowed below on the "Guard" was the finest array of modern instruments yet assembled for such an undertaking--engineers' transits, spirit levels, gradienters, surveyors' compasses and chains, delicate pocket aneroid barometers, mercurial mountain barometers, current meters--all "for prosecuting the work vigorously and scientifically." (The Stackpole transits, made by the New York firm of Stackpole & Sons, had their telescope axis mounted in double cone bearings, for example, which gave the instrument greater rigidity than older models, and the introduction of a simplified horizontal graduation reading allowed for faster readings and less chance of error.)

    In the midst of appreciating the construction highs and lows, he also sheds revealing light on the level of ineptitude, malfeasance, and amazingly blatant lies told to early investors. Clearly, the vision was large and the leaders charismatic in selling it. But the headline from THE NEW YORK TIMES on November 22, 1892 shows the collapse to be on a scale of Enron in its day:

    A BIG FRENCH SCANDAL
    AFFAIRS OF THE PANAMA CANAL COMPANY TO BE EXAMINED. -
    -- TURBULENT SCENE IN THE CHAMBER OF DEPUTIES
    -- DELAHAYE'S SWEEPING CHARGES OF BRIBERY
    -- SENATORS, DEPUTIES, MINISTERS, FINANCIERS, AND EDITORS ACCUSED.
    ...more info

 

 
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