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S 6467 We are facing west from a point near the Gatun
railway station, an important shipping-point in the banana
trade, seven miles from Colon. A train for Colon would go
toward the right; a train for Panama would go toward the
left, with forty miles still to traverse. The Chagres river
down there below the bank is flowing towards our right.
Beyond that first wooded ridge and this side of the higher
tree-covered ridge runs the canal; the river enters the
canal channel a little farther down-stream (right).
The village yonder is inhabited chiefly by negroes of
West Indian origin who make a living raising bananas
and cocoanuts, -especially bananas.
Most of those boats (used to bring bananas across to
the railway or sometimes to carry fruit down tO Cil0n by
water) are "dug-outs, hollowed'out of single tree,-
trunks in a fashion long customary in this tropical country.
The river itself is sometimes considerably lower than we
see it now, and sometimes much higher. The November.
and December rains sometimes make the water in narrow
gorges above here rise twenty or thirty feet in a single
This single-track railway line has had a history unique
in some respects.. The labor of constructing it fifty years
ago (by American enterprise) through what was then an
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almost pathless jungle, cost countless lives. The tradition
is that for every tie 'that was laid, a man died of dysentery
or fever. The completion of the road was accomplished
while the California -go'. fever was running high and that
fact greatly increased its formal commercial business. It
is said that in four years it-receipts for transportation
had paid all the. bills forcAstructon. During its first
twelve years of existence. oer $50,0000 i00n specie, was
carriedPover the~ai sn ie wayf om the westei ngoi .
fields Q : ;; k.
From.. o 's of"T-r.av, ,o d.o.co ',.t y & ItUo
Und .w - -.: ; .
lsthmian Railwayand agres River Pania' :,
Chemin de fer de 1' isthme, et la riviere Chagris, Panamai.
tic 3,tfriu4iid)e Csifenci ift.i uitb ber CSagreffluff, aiamac a a
Ferrocarril del Istmn) y rfo Chre,- Panama
Istlimiska jairnvige och flodei'-CC: agres, Panama.
eeai3auHaa Aopora Ha nepemONiK- H ptixa Ilarps,