ADMINISTRATION BUILDING, Balboa Heights, Headquarters of the Panama Canal Company
and Canal Zone Government
Photo taken at the latest Miami picnic of the newly formed P.C. Society of S.E. Florida
FLORIDA SOCIETY NEWS
At your editor's request, the following account of the founding of
the Florida Society has been written by John F. Warner of Bradenton
who officiated at its birth and has been given the honorary title of
FOUNDER by your Society.
Founding Of The Panama Society
At any time, and anywhere, the separation of old friends after a
rather close association thru several years brings a sense of distinct loss.
When the fabric of the friendship has been woven while Time has been
lengthening its shadows for a considerable period, and under unusual
conditions, the readjustment deepens the sense of loss of old landmarks,
and, likewise the necessity for the establishment of a new home, and
creation of a new social environment and a different economic program.
Retirement legislation has made provision for annuities, based on the
employees age and service on the Panama Canal. The retirement age
was fixed at 62 and service, except in case of disability, at least fifteen
years. On reaching retirement age, application could be made to the
U. S. Civil Service Commission for a two-year extension of time, under
However, on July 17th, 1932, with a few other retired employees,
and employees going on leave, we sailed from Cristobal on the good ship
Ancon for New York, and the good old U. S. A. We arrived in the har-
bor on July 24th, too late to dock. That night a few of us held a
meeting in the ship's lounge, and before that meeting closed there was
organized the Association of Ex-Employees of the Panama Canal and
the Panama Railroad Co. Robert S. Houston, of Erlanger, Kentucky was
elected president, while the undersigned was elected secretary-treasurer.
These officers were to serve until a permanent organization could be
formed at a place and on a date named by the president. Miss Mary
E. Ledden, of St. Petersburg, Florida was instructed to present a name
for the newly organized association. In the constitution adopted the
object of the association is, "To promote the welfare of its members in
every way possible, to perpetuate the friendships formed on the Isthmus
of Panama, and to further the interest and understanding of all Ameri-
cans in one of the world's greatest engineering achievements. The fol-
lowing members were present at this meeting, and subscribed to the
Eugene H. Ash
John W. Cleary
B. L. Hanson
Mr & Mrs. T. J. Hanrahan
Mr. & Mrs. Robt. S. Houston
R. E. Laughlin
Miss Mary E. Ledden
Emil G. Mettke
William S. Miller
Mr. & Mrs. J. F. Warner
It was understood that the secretary-treasurer would receive word
monthly from members, and from the news received make a consoli-
dated report, a copy of which would be mailed to each member, or family.
An annual contribution of $1.00 from each family was to be contrib-
uted to cover expenses of stationery, mimeographing, postage, etc. A fund
of $31.00 was provided to anticipate this venture in reporting the where-
abouts and activities of this association, which, by its title, made possible
the addition of members from any section of the country. With the in-
crease in retirement of Isthmian employees of the Canal and Railroad,
came an increase in membership, until considerably over 300 bulletins
were sent monthly. Toward the end of our editorial efforts the annual
contribution, covering membership and bulletin was raised to $1.50 per
family, and issues were reduced in number. Our files still show most of
the old bulletins and copies of the 'Minutes of Association meetings.'
LIST OF MEETINGS of Association of Ex-Employees of the Panama
Canal Zone, including the Charter meeting held on the S/S ANCON, in
N. Y. harbor, on the evening of July 24th, 1932.
Date of Meeting
July 24, 1932
Feb. 22, 1933
Feb. 22, 1934
Feb. 22, 1935
Apr. 2, 1936
Apr. 1L, 1937
Feb. 22, 1938
Feb. 22, 1939
Feb. 22, 1940
Feb. 22, 1941
Feb. 22, 1942
Feb. 22, 1943
Feb. 22, 1944
S. S. ANCON, N. Y. Harbor
St. Petersburg, Florida
(To be elected)
R. S. Houston
Robt. S. Houston-
Joseph M. Weaver
Philip C. Gorman
Philip C. Gorman
Philip C. Gorman
Rev. C. B. Mitchell
Chas. H. Beetham
Chas. H. Beetham
Wm. H. Baxley
(No convention held transportation restricted)
S. S. S. CENTER, Tampa Wm. H. Baxley
At my suggestion I was relieved from the duties of Sec'y-Treas'r
of the Association, early in 1947 after nearly 15 years of service. Under
new officers the membership has grown rapidly, and the quarterly
bulletin attracts attention from the various Panama Canal Clubs formed
in the United States, and its policy of general news coverage on past,
present, and possible future Canal history makes the quarterly visit of
the interesting news letter of interest to all who in any way were con-
nected with Panama Canal excavation.
The following lines were a part of the first report of the under-
signed to the first meeting of the oldtimers:
'Way down in the Tropics, Where in joining great oceans,
Woven into the fabric, Were quite human emotions;
The fine,loyal friendship; the love and esteem;
Make those wonderful days, Now a wonderful dream.
Each year some new faces; Some dear ones are gone,
Mingling joy with the sorrow, Our brigade marches on;
As milestones recede; With the passing of years;
Let's write on Life's Highway, A message that cheers.
-1. F. Warner
The following is the Secretary-Treasurer's report covering the past
There are still, 20 members whose dues have not been paid for 1951.
The Society now has 734 paid up members, 128 being new members.
37 have paid their 1952 dues and one has paid thru 1954.
This year the Year Book will go to press December 1st in order that
your Secretary-Teasurer can have them in the mail early in January.
In this manner all members will have their new books before leaving
home for the 1952 Reunion. There have been many changes in addresses
and they are still coming in. NO BOOKS WILL BE GIVEN OUT AT
Please be sure and notify the Secretary-Treasurer if you have a
change of address, not later than December 1st. No changes can be
made after the Year Book goes to press, and we do want all names and
addresses to be exactly as you wish them to read.
Many thanks for the names which have been mailed in, they have
been placed on our mailing list and sent a copy of the June Canal
Record. The September Canal Record will also be sent these prospec-
tive members with an invitation to join the Society. In the event they
do not join their names will be withdrawn from the mailing list
Members spending the winter in Florida and elsewhere and wish-
ing their winter address to appear in the Year Book will please advise
the Secretary-Treasurer at their earliest convenience, before December 1st.
The "IN MEMORIAM" this year will consist only of members
and their families, as deceased non-members have been listed in the
Canal Record during the year.
The following have been added since the June Canal Record.
Hohmann, Mr. and Mrs. Frank W.
P. O. Box 1564 ..-- .._ .--_______.Balboa, Canal Zone
Hollowell, Mr. and Mrs. Ross H.
P. O. Box 329 -- --- ----- -Balboa, Canal Zone
Kieswetter, Mr. and Mrs. E. M.
P. O. Box 263 -_--_-______ ______Gamboa, Canal Zone
Tydeman, Mr. and Mrs. B. G.
P. O. Box 27__ .--.---------- --.......Gatun, Canal Zone
Callaway, Mr. and Mrs. William H.
P. O. Box 38 .._______ .___ __.-.. Magnolia Springs, Alabama
Bean, Miss Florence I.
3874 Crescent Drive --____..____ -- -- Santa Barbara, California
Buehler, Mr. and Mrs. George H.
3421 LaSelva Place___ ____.Palos Verdes Estates, California
White, Mr. and Mrs. D. P.
8385 Imperial Avenue-__ .______La Mesa, California
Alexander, Mr. and Mrs. M. R.
P. O. Box 348 ------- __ _____ Arlington, Florida
Campbell, Mr. and Mrs. John S.
1226 Highland Street North __ -- _St. Petersburg 2, Florida
Cohen, Mr. and Mrs. Harry
1851 Southwest 37th Avenue -____ _____Miami, Florida
Grubbs, Mr. and Mrs. W. Alfred
Residence: 615 16th Street North
Mail: P. O. Box 956 __-- Zephyrhills, Florida
Hull, Mr. and Mrs. William G.
2401 19th Street North -- --.-.-_-St. Petersburg 4, Florida
Jackson, Mr. C. C.
P. O. Box 1127.____Stuart, Florida
Michaux, Mr. and Mrs. William M.
532 38th Avenue Northeast.....------.--... _St. Petersburg 4, Florida
Miner, Mr. and Mrs. Arthur L.
3924 17th Street North ____ .St. Petersburg 4, Florida
Ratcliff, Mr. and Mrs. John R.
619 Skyview Avenue ____ Clearwater, Florida
Runyan, Mrs. R. W.
Residence: 1271 Palmer Avenue
Mail: P. O. Box 532.__ ___-. Winter Park, Florida
Stoudnor, Mr. and Mrs. J. R.
3216 Overlook Place, Shore Acres __ St. Petersburg 4, Florida
Williams, Mr. and Mrs. W. E.
1528 N. W. 5th Avenue -----__------Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
Stilson, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph H.
c/o Mrs. W. H. Frederick
2926 Erdman Avenue -..__---- ___ Baltimore 13, Maryland
Wihitaker, Mrs. Lydia D.
5502 Edmondson Avenue .- Ba.-- ---.lti Baltimore 29, Maryland
Pehler, Miss Ida R.
114 Wabasha Street East _--------..Winona, Minnesota
Cauthers, Mr. and Mrs. R. A.
85 Grandview Avenue__-- -- Great Neck, New York
Pearce, Mr. and Mrs. H. A.
230 Shotwell Park______. ........ -Syracuse, New York
Wolf, Mr. and Mrs. Charles J.
723 Euclid Avenue ______-__ Syracuse, New York
Hamilton, Mr. and Mrs. P. W.
3801 Woodlawn Drive __________- Nashville 28, Tennessee
Zirkle, Mr. and Mrs. John J. Jr.
69 Grandview Drive Ashville, North Carolina
Lacklen, Mrs. Mary Jane
5428 North 23rd Street- Arlington, Virginia
Zirkle, Mr. John J.
c/o Briarcroft New Market, Virginia
CHANGES OF ADDRESS
Heintz, Mrs. Melba M.
P. O. Box 993 __Balboa, Canal Zone
Ritchey, Mr. and Mrs. George V.
7026 North 25th Drive ____-____. ...... .Phoenix, Arizona
Mathues, Mr. and Mrs. Wm. F.
Residence: Junction U. S. Highway 71 and State Highway 68 (West)
Mail: P. O. Box 208- Springdale, Arkansas
Meigs, Mr. and Mrs. A. J.
Apartment 8, Building 1
Whitham Street ._____ ___ Fayettville, Arkansas
Ashbrook, Mrs. C. M.
3616 East 2nd Street __- Long Beach, California
Lutz, Mr. and Mrs. Carl M.
4516 West 18th Street. ------------. Los Angeles 19, California
McLaughlin, Mr. and Mrs. Wm. J.
2711 Ellendale Place (temp.) .----.-------Los Angeles 7, California
Malone, Mr. and Mrs. P. L.
659 North 20th Street .. .. San Pedro, California
Russell, Mr. and Mrs. W. G. H.
555 Esplanade -_- -_ -Redondo Beach, California
Taber, Mrs. L. A.
917 East Mendocino Street.-_-___- ___.---- __ Altadena, California
Thomas, Mr. and Mrs. Hugh M.
76 Le Roy ._-_-- __ -____ -... Arcadia, California
Cope, Mr. Walter C.
1408 Nebraska Avenue ---_-- ----__ Orlando, Florida
Dunham, Mr. and Mrs. Wallace
Residence: Somerset Avenue, Ballentine Manor Estates
Mail: R. F. D. No. 3, Box 143 D -_---------- Sarasota, Florida
Dworak, Mr. and Mrs. Howard H.
2307 Beach Boulevard (Gulfport) ..--- St. Petersburg 7, Florida
Hill, Mr. and Mrs. Charles H.
--- _--------------- Zephyrhills, Florida
Hunt, Colonel and Mrs. Wm. P.
P. O. Box 123 22nd Street Station --- St. Petersburg 3, Florida
Hunter, Mr. and Mrs. Oscar R.
610 Elizabeth Street ----- -- .- _____-. --- Ocala, Florida
Leach, Mr. and Mrs. Mike
2041/2 South Willow Avenue ------_ -_____ Tampa, Florida
Love, Mrs. C. R. (Pat)
1719 Beach Drive South--___.__ St. Petersburg 5, Florida
Johnson, Mr. and Mrs. J. L
601 Stratford Drive ...--_ --- ___.Lexington, Kentucky
Jensen, Mrs. Hans C.
2908 Dunbrin Road --__ --- --- __.__-- -Baltimore 22, Maryland
Sprecken, Mr. Fred
2471 Winchester, Apartment 6--._--...___.. Muskegon, Michigan
Stevens, Mr. and Mrs. E. W.
14425 Grandmont --.------------------_ Detroit 27, Michigan
Smith, Mr. and Mrs. Milton R.
4409 Roanoke Parkway ------- Kansas City 2, Missouri
Whitsett, Mr. and Mrs. James A.
R. F. D. No. 1, Box 146-B -- ----- Las Cruces, New Mexico
Morgan, Mrs. Beatrice T.
185 Clinton Avenue, Apartment 15-G .-----. -Brooklyn, New York
Coyle, Mr. and Mrs. Frank B.
P. O. Box 329 _-- Hendersonville, North Carolina
Sweet, Colonel and Mrs. W. H.
1307 Cincinnati ...--------.---- -......_El Paso 6, Texas
Coffey, Mrs. Marie G.
7325 Briefway..---_.. ---__--- -- --.. .--.. .. -Houston 17, Texas
Expressions of thanks for flowers sent by your Society in cases of
illness or bereavement have been received from the following: Mrs. Mary
A. Klemmer, the Falk family, the James Bradley family, Albert C.
Bergis and family, the Elwyn Greene family, Mrs. Bertha E. Whaler
and family, Mrs. Robert Wilcox and family, Claude Ott, John A. Pat-
terson, James Lewis and Mrs. E. F. Hewitt and family.
Society President Bill Butler advises that several inquiries have
been received from retired Canal employees on the Zone and in the
States concerning living conditions in this vicinity. The offer still
stands to assist you if possible to get located here but it is again em-
phasized that we are not in the real estate business nor have we tieup
with anyone in the real estate business. The offer of assistance was
made in a fraternal spirit with no thought of financial gain for the
Society or any of its members.
The photograph of the administration building at Balboa Heights
is reproduced by courtesy of the Panama Canal Company.
Among recent visitors to this vicinity have been:
The D. P. Whites of La Mesa, Calif.; Dr. John Kennedy, Asst. Ch.
Surgeon of the Veterans' Bureau of Washington, D. C., who dropped
in on his brother-in-law and sister, the Warren Loves of Gulfport while
on an inspection trip in this area; Linda Pearl of Los Cumbres, Panama,
granddaughter of the Charles Calvits of this city; the Tom Kelley family
of Balboa who are vacationing in Hendersonville, N. C.; they drove
down to St. Pete early in July to pick up Mrs. Kelley's mother, Mrs.
John Luckey, and take her back to Hendersonville; Mrs. Elizabeth
Phillips and daughters, Sharon and Linda who camel to see Mrs. Phillips'
parents the Frank Hayes of this city; the Arthur Miners, recently re-
tired Balboans who have bought a home here; Mrs. Herbert Gardner visit-
ing her parents, the Andrew Johnstons of Clearwater; Miss Margaret Grier
who came to see her parents, the Sam Griers of Clearwater; the Lewis
Kliens, he was former brewmaster at the Cerveceria National in Panama
City; Everett W. Jackson who was with the Clubhouses from 1941 to 1947;
Charles Mackintosh and wife who were visiting his brother, Joseph,
in June; Mr. and Mrs. W. B. Boggs of Washington, D. C.; and Louis
Schmidt, formerly of Balboa, Mr. and Mrs. Michaux, who have bought a
home here, Mr. and Mrs. Charles H. Hill, Mrs. John Powell who is visiting
her parents, the Hutchinsons, Mr. and Mrs. W. A. Grubbs, Bob Grier who
is visiting his parents, the Sam Griers in Clearwater, Willie Williams and
Del Thornton who are now umpires in the Florida International League.
Mrs. Helen Marie Smith, daughter of Mrs. Helen Hammond has been
spending the summer here in St. Petersburg with her mother is leaving
August 30th for her home in New York City. John R. Hammond sur-
prised his mother by stopping off here for a few days on his way back to
the Zone. Mr. Hammond has been on a short business trip.
Mr. and Mrs. Ross Hallowell are visiting friends here in St. Peters-
burg for a short time. They have been in Hendersonville, North Carolina
for the past several weeks, and like it there very much. in fact may decide
to make it their home after Mr. Hollowell retires.
Most of us do not need to be led into temptation we can find
our own way.
It never occurs to a boy of eighteen that some day he will be as
dumb as his father.
About the only thing that seems to come down nowadays is rain-
and even that soaks you!
Women have their many faults,
Men, they have but two-
It's everything they have to say,
An everything they do.
A man's country is not a certain area of land ... it is a principle,
and patriotism is loyalty to that principle.
-George W. Curtis
The Benjamin F. Kullers of Margarita have announced the en-
gagement of their daughter, Florence Ann, to Raymond Gill, son of
Mr. and Mrs. John J. Gill of Balboa. The wedding date has not yet been
The Theodore E. Englebrights of Margarita have announced the
engagement of their daughter, Dorothy Mae, to James Edward Dunn
of Rodman, C. Z.
The Charles Perrets of Colon have announced the engagement of
their daughter, Colette, to James Lee Fernandez, son of Mr. and Mrs.
Anthony Fernandez of Margarita. Mr. Fernandez is a grandson of the
Glawsons, real oldtimers of Cristobal who are visiting their family on
Mrs. Gay Carpenter Cummings of Bartlesville, Okla., and Lt. A. D.
Lawson, U. S. A., son of the Paul R. Furrs of Gatun, were married at
Sheppard Field, Wichita Falls, Texas on April 12th. They will reside
in Waco, Texas.
Helen Lucille Laney, Principal of Gatun School for the past four
years, and Wallace E. Rushing of Cristobal were married early in May.
They will reside in Gatun.
Miss Melba Flores, daughter of Mr. John Flores of Old Cristobal
and Mr. D. Robert LaPorta were married in Margarita on May 12th.
Miss Mary Louise Scranton, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Leonard
H. Scranton of France Field, and Sergeant Dale Gene Rakes, U. S. A. F.,
were married in the Gatun Union Church on May 12th. They will reside
at MacDill Field, Florida, where Sergeant Rakes has been stationed.
Mr. S. H. Sharpensteen and Mrs. Beryl Chase, well-known Pacific
siders were married in the Gamboa Union Church early in June. They will
live at Los Cumbres, Panama.
Miss Jane Parks Bevington, daughter of the Harold P. Bevingtons
of Margarita and Mr. Martin Etienne of Guttenberg, N. J. were married
in Union City, N. J., on May 12th. They will reside in Guttenberg.
The Adrian M. Bouches of Pedro Miguel have announced the mar-
riage of their daughter, Marguerite, to Mr. Robert Budreau, son of
Mr. and Mrs. W. M. Trasavage of Pedro Miguel, on June 8th.
Miss Mary Martin Newland, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. W. K. New-
land of Diablo Heights and Dr. William F. Clary of Memphis, Tenn.,
were married in the Cathedral of St. Luke, Ancon, on June 20th. They
will reside in Galveston, Texas, where Dr. Clary will soon begin his
residency at the Psychopathic Hospital connected with the Medical Branch
of the University of Texas.
Miss Louise Ellen Zimmerman, daughter of the George Zimmermans
of Gatun and Harrold Eugene Small, Jr. of Fort Davis were married
in the Gatun Union Churdh on June 23rd. They will live in Fort Davis.
Miss Betty Ruth Adams of Saluda, N. C., and Peter James Barr,
son of Mrs. M. Francis Barr of Ancon were married on June 26th at
Charleston, S. C. Mr. Barr is a grandson of the late John Westbergs,
very well known oldtimers of the Pacific side.
Miss Juanita Barker of Elgin Texas and William F. Bartholomew,
Jr., son of the Bill Bartholomews of Gamboa, were married May 30th in
Elgin. They will reside in Milwaukee, Wis.
Miss Margaret Mary May of East Brady, Pa., and Jbhn W. Gilder,
son of Dr. and Mrs. John Wayne Gilder of Colon Beach, were mar-
ried in East Brady, June 16th. They will reside in Thornberg, Pa.
Miss Beverly Meitzen of Curundu and Mr. James Ridge, son of
the Larry Ridges of Los Angeles were married July 15th in Balboa.
Miss Marilyn Anita Jennison, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John E.
Jennison Jr. of Balboa wed Lt. Gilmer Young Waggoner Jr., U.S.A. at Re-
deemer Lutheran Church in Balboa recently. They will reside at Ft.
Myrtle Erickson McCall, who was a resident of the Canal Zone for
many years was married to Selmer A. Sundstrom on Wednesday, April
25th, in Afton, Minnesota.
The Winnard F. Parsons of Cristobal are the parents of a son, their
fifth child, born in Gorgas Hospital on May 26th. Mrs. Parsons is
the former Patricia Snyder of New Cristobal.
The Asa C. Bullocks, Jr. of Diablo Heights are the parents of a
daughter, their first child, born in Gorgas Hospital on May 22nd.
Col. and Mr. William B. Taylor have announced the birth of a
son, William Lee, on July 8th. Mrs. Taylor is the former Janet Koperski
and Col. Taylor is the Air Attache at our embassy in Melbourne,
Dr. and Mrs. William H. Clinchard are the proud parents of a baby
daughter, Connie Michele, born at Panama Hospital on July 25th.
Sgt. and Mrs. Paul Calvit, son and daughter-in-law of our genial
Vice-President and his wife, have announced the arrival of a baby son,
John Paul, who tipped the scales at 7 pounds and 8 ounces. This is their
third child. Sgt. Calvit leaves Alabama very soon as he has been assigned
duty in Italy and sails from New York on September 10th. Mrs. Calvit
will remain in Alabama with the children until his return.
The following retirements from Canal service have been reported
since the last issue of the Record:lune: Newton W. Bagby, Lloyd M.
Blaney, John S. Campbell, William T. Compton, Mrs. Iola J. Edwards,
Aram H. Hatch, Keith E. Kelley, Emil C. Knapp, Clarence L. Skillman,
Leonard H. Stark, Leslie E. Wilkinson. July: Clinton J. Atkinson, John
C. Buechele, Herman C. Groschup, Harry J. Lewis, Edward B. Pearson,
Newell N. Shaw, Charles O. Wilson, William C. Webber. August: Angel
E. Berrios, Oliver Bowen, Bob J. Fletcher, David P. Howe, Walter A.
Koerber, Elmer P. Oberg, John L. Williams.
The many friends of oldtimers, the Charles Bethams of Tampa,
will be glad to learn that Mrs. Beetham is improving and has returned to
her home after several months' illness. Mr. Beetham underwent a hernia
operation in May and is able to get around again. Al Meigs, a fellow
Tampan, wrote that Mr. Beetham being rather tired when he was admitted
to the hospital, fell asleep and was surprised to learn when he awoke that
he had already been operated upon.
Walter Tragsdorf of the Atlantic side who was retired recently
is recuperating at his Neillsville, Wisconsin, home after two major
Col. and Mrs. William P. Hunt who journeyed to the Isthmus in
June both had to spend some time in Colon Hospital. They returned
to this city early in August and Mrs. Hunt was obliged to enter a local
hospital for a checkup.
Bob Glaw's legion of friends will regret to learn that he has been
under the weather for some time. When your reporter last saw him,
Bob was cheerful as ever and able to take his meals regularly. Soon
as he is able to play poker once more he will be given his 484 removing
him from the sick list.
Mayor Bob Wilhite of Mascotte, Fla., and wife, Hazel, have both
been ill recently. Bob spent twelve days in the hospital but is feeling
better now. Among recent visitors at the Wilhites have been the Kies-
wetters on vacation from the Zone.
Mrs. Robert Hansen, the former Eva Jeanne Doyle of Cristobal,
who now resides in San Lorenzo, Cal., has been stricken with tuber-
culosis and is in a local sanitorium. Her mother, Mrs. Al Doyle of
Cristobal, has flown to California to assist in caring for the Hansen's
John A. Patterson of Shavertown, Pa., wrote early in June that
Mrs. Patterson had been confined to the Wilkes Barre General Hospital
for ten weeks but was improving considerably.
The Curtain Falls
James C. Bradley, Jr., son of oldtimers Mr. and Mrs. Jimmie
Bradley, now living in St. Petersburg, died suddenly on July 6th in
Tennessee. He leaves his wife, Helen, a daughter and two sons.
One of the local Canal colony's best known couples left us recently
when Mrs. Viola K. Bergis who had been bedridden for several years
passed away on June 21st followed by her husband, James Bergis just
twenty days later on July 10th| They had resided here for nine years,
ever since Jimmie, as he was known to all, was retired for disability.
Frederick G. Whaler, another very well known oldtimer, age 67,
died in this city on June 28th. Surviving are his wife Bertha, a son,
Sgt. George R. Whaler, now in Korea, a daughter, Mrs. B. F. Dowler,
of St. Petersburg and six grandchildren.
Robert Wilcox, age 75, who arrived in Cristobal in 1899 and was
the last surviving charter member of the Stranger's Club of Colon,
died in Miami, Fla., on July 18th. Bob, as he was known to all old-
timers, spent several months each year on the Isthmus after removing
to Miami. His widow and two daughters, Mrs. A. Wilcox Trapnell and
Mrs. John Hampden Lewis and two granddaughters survive.
George W. Mullins, 62, retired from the Zone police force in 1948,
died at Gorgas Hospital recently. Beside his wife he leaves three sons,
George, Earl and Curtis all residing on the Zone.
Howard Baxter, former yardmaster with the P. R. R. who re-
signed in 1914 to enter the trucking business in Panama City, died in
Carlyle, Pa., on June 19th aged 80. A daughter, Mrs. Naena B. Shockley
of Tampa, Fla., survives.
Captain Charles H. Steiner, 78, retired towboat master in the
Dredging Division, died recently in Mobile, Ala. Beside his widow, he
leaves a son ,Charles, Jr., of Mobile, another son, Jierome, and a daughter,
Mrs. Edward S. Seigle of Balboa.
William G. Abendroth, 69, employed at Colon Hospital until his
retirement, died in San Diego, Cal., recently. Beside his widow he is
survived by two daughters, Mrs. Arthur S. Flood and Mrs. Robert C.
Hobson and a son William, Jr., three grandchildren and one great
Mrs. Agnes B. Greene, 79, wife of former Auditor of the Canal,
Elwyn Greene, died of a heart attack at her home in Bradenton, Fla.,
on June 14th. Beside her husband, four daughters, Mrs. Walter Crouch,
Mrs. Nelson Magner, Mrs. Clifford Wattem and Miss Francis Greene
and a son, Roger survive.
Asa Charles Bullock, age 59, died suddenly a few weeks ago while at
work in Cristobal. His wife, Esther, and a son, Asa, Jr., and one grand-
Mrs. Stella A. Corliss, 75, former Zonian, died June 27th. No
further information is available.
Joe H. Kent, former Municipal Division employee who left the
Canal in 1947, died May 26th at Sweetwater, Texas. His wife survives.
Captain Harry Falk, one of the first of the Canal pilots, aged 80,
died recently in Collingswood, N.J. In addition to his wife he also leaves
a son, Henry, also a Canal pilot and two daughters, Mrs. Grace Schmidt
of Woodhaven, L. I., and Mrs. Elsie Feddman of Collingswood.
Clyde (Jimmie) Rose, former hotel employee on the Canal who
was retired for disability in 1950, died as the result of an automobile
accident in California recently. His widow, Mary Pitman Rose of
Cupertino, Cal., survives.
Milton Trower, son of former Pedro Miguel residents, Mr. and
Mrs. James D. Trower, 6131 Coral Way, Coral Gables, Fla., was killed
in the crash of a Navy plane near Jacksonville, Fla., recently.
Edward F. Hewitt, 71, retired R. & F. A. employee of Cristobal
and a resident of this city, died August 7th. His wife, Nora and four
daughters, Mrs. Charles L. Green, Cristobal; Mrs. F. W. Sapp, this city;
Mrs. E. B. Alexander and Mrs. D. A. Ogletree of San Antonio, Tex. survive,
George A. Yingling, aged 71, passed away on May 30th at his
home in Seven Mile, Ohio. Employed on the Canal in 1905, Mr.
Yingling was prominent in baseball circles and was for some time in
charge of the Correspondence Bureau at Balboa Heights. He was mar-
ried to the former Emily Ann Bucher, a nurse at Gorgas Hospital, who
passed away in 1948.
Mrs. M. Hallen, widow of former Official Photographer, Ernest
Hallen, passed away recently at her home in Monterey Park, Cal. She
leaves two daughters, Mrs. C. U. Pittman of Westfield, N. J., and Mrs.
V. J. Mathews of Panama City, R of P.
Mrs. John F. Latimer, 59, wife of a retired towboat master, died
July 12th at her home in Jacksonville, Fla.
Zachariah J. Jones, retiredCanal Zone employee died recently in
Gorgas Hospital. He was head stevedore foreman with the R & FA at the
time he retired. He is survived by his wife Elizabeth. They have been
living in Gamboa.
Major and Mrs. George N. Otto announce the death of Joseph H.
Nieset, our Jacksonville representative, which occurred on August 14th.
Mrs. Otto is the sister of Mr. Nieset. No further details are available.
William W. Darling, Vice President of the New York Society, also
a member of the Florida Society, who has been spending his winters here
in St. Petersburg, died at the Veterans' Hospital,Kingsbridge Road, New
York August 16th. Funeral services were held in Brooklyn. Mr. Darling
had traveled extensively during his lifetime and was a member of Byrd's
first Antartic expedition. He was decorated by former President Herbert
Hoover on the lawn of the White House with others of the group upon
their return from Little America. He is survived by his daughter Janet
who lives in Brooklyn.
Mrs. John Hushing, wife of the U. S. Marshal for the U. S. District
Court at Ancon, died August 2nd at Gorgas Hospital after a lingering
illness. Mrs. Hushing was superintendent for 27 years of the International
Correspondence School's Panama Branch. She is survived by her hus-
band, a sister, Miss Elena Molleda of Ancon, and a brother Tomas Mol-
leda of Panama City.
James Mace Wilke, who retired August 31st, 1943, as conductor of
the Panama Railroad died recently in San Antonio, Texas. He is sur-
vived by his wife, two sisters and three brothers. One sister, Mrs. Frank
Gerchow lives in Pedro Miguel.
Robet A. Getman, retired Panama Canal employee dropped dead
from a heart attack August 11th on the Panama Golf Club course. He
was competing in the Esso Tournament when he suffered the attack. He
is survived by his wife, Francis, who is a dietician at Gorgas Hospital,
his mother, Mrs. Jessie Getman of Gamboa, and two sisters Mrs. Gerald
Cooper of Gamboa, and Mrs. Donald Callahan of Columbus, Ohio.
Dr. Bert W. Caldwell, who served with the I.C.C. during the con-
struction days died on July 26th in Beloit, Wisconsin. At one time he
served as superintendent of Santo Tomas Hospital. After leaving the
Isthmus in 1915 he was a member of the Rockefeller Foundation Red
Cross commission in the Balkans and an inspector of allied prison camps
in Germany. Dr. Caldwell is survived by a son, Henry H. Caldwell, of
Rockton, Wisconsin and a brother in Winter Haven, Florida.
The August 3rd issue of the Panama Canal Review was to us the
most informative and interesting yet produced. One issue of the
Review furnishes more worthwhile Zone news than a month's issues
of either of the Panama newspapers.
The Panama Canal and Railroad were rechristened "The Panama
Canal Company" on July 1st with few outward signs of the changeover.
The official houses just up the hill from the Administration Build-
ing at Balboa Heights occupied for many years by C. A. McIllvaine
and Roy Watson are to be replaced by official concrete houses of modi-
fied Spanish architecture. Both houses were removed from Culebra
36 years ago and have become obsolete.
Under the heading "FORTY YEARS AGO" mention is made of
an invention by Steamshovel Al Geddes, now living in St. Pete, which
increased the production of a 95 ton steamshovel by 100 cubic yards
per day. Al says it took them long enough to give him credit for his
The Canal administration is giving consideration to having Panama
Line ships use a more southerly port than New York and the desirability
of making trips to West Coast and Gulf ports. This idea should be
very appealing to employees taking vacations in the colder months.
The most unfair retroactive section of the law extending income
taxes to Zone residents has finally been repealed and the effective tax
date is now January 1, 1951. Retroactive taxes are, in reality, con-
fiscation of capital.
A bill to provide for the retirement of local rate (formerly silver)
employees has been introduced in the Senate.
The Zone has not escaped the worldwide unusual weather as is
evidenced by the 95.3 degree temperature recorded April 13th and several
other warm days recently. Oldtimers there report they have felt the
heat more this year than at any time for many years.
Selling for cash in the commissaries has proven satisfactory and
the Commissary Division now plans to extend the plan to all stores.
A bill to permit Zone firemen to retire at age 50 after 20 years
service has been introduced in the House of Representatives.
Early in June the House Appropriations Committee urged the
Secretary of the Army to take immediate steps to increase the rentals
on government housing for Canal employees, which it is believed the
Governor will try to prevent.
A new and higher tariff on medical service in the hospitals and
dispensaries became effective July 1st.
An Alabama Congressman has introduced a bill which would change
the name of Gatun, the locks and the dam to Sibert in honor of the late
General Sibert a native of Gadsden, Alabama.
The land now occupied by the Strangers Club and the Colon Rail-
road Station may soon be turned over to the Republic of Panama for
use by the new Colon Free Zone.
Work is about to begin on the David to Remedios link of the Pan
American Highway. If we live long enough we may yet be able to drive
down to the Zone for a visit.
The Retirement Clerk, Administration Building, Balboa Heights, is
hunting information concerning Mr. and Mrs. Charles Pulsifer who lived
in Empire from 1906 to 1913. Pulsifer came from Auburn, Maine in
June, 1906 and served as clerk in the office of the Culebra Division
Auditor, Culebra Construction Division and the Disbursement Depart-
ment. The Pulsifers and their four children left the Isthmus in June
1913 to go to San Francisco, Cal. Information concerning them is
desired in connection with the oldtimers' pensions.
ABOUT PEOPLE YOU KNOW
The Distinguished Service Cross for gallantry in action has been
awarded posthumously to Sergeant George Payne, Canal Zone boy who
was killed in action in Korea last November. He was the son of re-
tired Canal pilot, Captain Byron Payne. George was born and reared
on the Canal Zone.
Leo Conley, son of the late Mike Conley, former Cristobal Marine
Division employee, started for Alaska last week to work on Army air-
craft at Elmendorff Field in Alaska. His wife and two children expect
to join him soon as he can obtain quarters there. Mrs. Conley, senior,
says she thinks the climate will be too cold for her after so many years
in the tropics.
The Ernest Woods, formerly of Cristobal, have returned to the
Isthmus after three months in the States during which they covered
6,000 miles and visited eighteen states. They are living in Gamboa until
next July when they will have to vacate. They then plan to live at the
Tivoli if possible.
Mrs. Wilhelmina Sandiford who has been employed at a Florida
Army base had the misfortune to break her arm just after accepting a
position in the Department of Defense in Washington, D. C. Nothing
daunted she went north anyway.
Mrs. Marie G. Coffey, who spent the winter in St. Pete, was re-
ported ill in a northern hospital but is now visiting with her children
on the Zone.
Edward H. Browder, son of Mr. and Mrs. Browder of Balboa, has
received an appointment to Annapolis. Browder was born on the Ithmus
and was an honor graduate of Balboa High School last Spring.
Richard C. Herman, son of Mr. and Mrs. G. F. Herman of Balboa,
was appointed Cadet Commanding Officer at Bradley University where
he is a junior majoring in dramatics.
R. K. Morris, former Canal Chief Quartermaster has made ceramics
his hobby and held an exhibition of his work in Balboa recently.
Robert M. Quinn, son of the W. P. Quinns of Gatun, who enlisted
in the Navy in 1948, is on a ship off the Korean coast.
Benjamin C. Kuller, son of the F. B. Kullers of Margarita, has
been commissioned Second Lieutenant in the Air Force and has been
assigned to the 3702nd Personnel Processing Squadron at Lackland Air-
force Base, Texas.
Ted Sundquist, son of Otto A. Sundquist of Gamboa, graduated in
June from the University of Oklahoma with the highest honors in his
class and has been employed by the North American Aviation in Cali-
fornia in an engineering capacity.
Reed R. McIllvaine, son of the Lew W. McIllvaines of Margarita,
has graduated from Bradley University with a degree in business ad-
Congratulations to W. E. (Bill) Adams and A. F. (Tony) Raymond
who have been named General Agent and Asst. General Agent of the
United Fruit Company at Cristobal.
Edward Aanstoos, son of the Ted Aanstoos of Cristobal, has just
graduated from Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service.
Ed, a Navy veteran, and his wife were expecting their third child in
Police Sergeant Homer V. Crooks left the Zone recently for his
first States vacation since he arrived on the Zone in 1927. He must
have felt like Rip Van Winkle when he landed.
Four Zonians, E. S. Rigby, his son Lee, John McDaniel and Richard
C. Harris signed on a 30 ton British yacht recently for a trip to Tahiti
via the Marquesas. We hope they have better luck than your editor who
signed on a British yacht in 1923 for a South Seas trip whidh ended at
Mrs. Margaret Parsons of Tampa has returned to the Zone where
she is operating the Cristobal Clubhouse beauty shop.
James B. Coman, Jr., has re-entered the Army and is a Second Lieu-
tenant at Albrook Field.
Lawrence Hennan of St. Pete started north the day after your So-
ciety's June picnic and planned to stop at Atlanta to see the Robertson
The recently retired Howard Dworaks are busy getting settled in
the Gulfport, Fla., home they purchased last year.
Stanford Skinner, son of the J. S. Skinners of Balboa has graduated
from the University of Alabama with a degree in law and has joined
the law firm of Wilkerson and Skinner, the latter being his uncle.
Miss Nancy Gilder, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Wayne Gilder of
Colon Hospital has been employed as nurse at that institution.
Mrs. Eleanor McIllhenny, formerly of the staff of the Panama
American is now employed on the Panama Canal Review.
The Jack Wilsons of Tampa, formerly of Pedro Miguel, are on
an extended motor trip to Canada and the west coast. On June 14th they
were freezing on Pikes Peak, Colo., drove thru a snowstorm to Great
Falls, Mont., on the 22nd; had to have a fire at night in Banff, Canada,
on the 26th; found the weather warmer at Vancouver, B. C., on July
1st; and were trying to win a few bucks at Reno, Nev., when last heard
from on July 12th.
Mrs. Virginia Winquist Seiler of Washington, D. C., journeyed
to California in May to be with her mother on her 80th birthday.
James L. Lundy, son of the William E. Lundys of Balboa Heights
has been named outstanding junior of the Northwestern University chap-
ter of the Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity.
Mrs. John W. Wilson of St. Pete spent the month of June in Detroit
Dotsy Bigelow, daughter of Mrs. Viola Bewley Bigelow, was awarded
a degree in nursing at Georgetown University in June.
A card has been received from the Jimmy Bradley's, Louie, Mrs.
Helen Bradley and the children, to "The Panama Canal Society, its
members and officers", as follows: "Many thanks for all the kind thoughts
and words of comfort extended to us in our recent bereavement and for
the beautiful flowers sent to the funeral home in New York. We put Helen
and the children on a plane last Friday (August 10th) from Miami to
the Canal Zone where she is promised a job and quarters and a good
start for all of them. God bless the Canal Zone folks that are still
there and for the old timers there and in Florida and elsewhere for the
help they are extending to our Helen and her children." This really
makes us feel that the Canal can't be too bad as they are still there to
help when needed. The best of luck to you Helen, from all of us.
John W. Kromer, son of the Wilson H. Kromers, is being trans-
ferred from the Panama Canal Company to the Bureau of Standards in
Washington, D. C. The Kromers with their three children had been vaca-
tioning in the States and left the children with Mr. Kromer's parents in
Bath, Pa. when they returned to the Zone to pack up and move to Wash-
ington. Jack, if it gets too cold in Washington don't forget Florida is a
wonderful place to spend the winters with your family.
SAnother of our Canal Zone boys is getting a good start in the States:
Edward Albert Linney, son of Col. and Mrs. Jack Linney, formerly
of Quarry Heights, is now a partner of) Arthur J. Nelson, prominent law-
yer of St. Petersburg, Florida. Their firm name is Nelson and Linney.
Good luck to you both in this merger.
BY GRAPEVINE AND PONY EXPRESS
H. H. Evans, former Assistant Superintendent of the Mechanical
Division, who resides in Charlottesville, Va., advises he is still in the
land of the living but has been for several months in Atlanta, Ga., taking
care of the affairs of a sister, aged 84, who has been stricken with
paralysis. Daughter, Jane, is in Vancouver, B. C., where her husband
is Consul General and Mr. Evans' son is in Mexico City. Mr. Evans
is located in the Biltmore Apartments attached to the hotel of that
name in Atlanta and will be glad to see any former Zonians passing
Bill and Marie Calloway, formerly of Gatun, have settled in Mag-
nolia Springs, Ala., and hope friends in that vicinity will stop by.
Their post office address is Box 38.
Mrs. Elizabeth Chester of Castine, Maine advises that daughter, Char-
lene Devereaux, had a paraletic shock three years ago but after a cerebral
arterial operation in February has now almost completely recovered.
F. B. (Barney) Coyle says the Coyle family have finally decided
to stop wandering around. They stopped at Hendersonville, N. C., to
visit the Muldoons and Lewises intending to stay a week and return to
Hot Springs, Ark., but they liked the place so much they bought a home
there. Among recent visitors have been Alice and Tania Garlington,
the Wendell Greens and the Tom Kelley family.
The M. R. Alexanders who retired a little more than a year ago
after 37 years on the Isthmus had planned to settle in Texas but changed
their minds and have bought a home in Arlington, Fla., about ten miles
south of Jacksonville on the St. Johns River. One daughter is married
to Hugh Higgenbotham who spent twelve years on the Zone. They
are the parents of four boys, the latest of which has just arrived and
they live near the Alexanders. Daughter Jeanette (Mrs. Melvin B.
Clement) lives in Washington, D. C., and has one child, a daughter
about 31/2 years old. Son Milo graduated from Texas University in
1950 and is Junior Airport Manager at San Juan, Porto Rico. He mar-
ried the former Lois Johnson of Balboa in 1949. Son Daniel entered
Texas A. & M. College last September. The Alexanders expect the E. A.
Erbe family for a visit soon.
Mrs. R. W. Runyon, widow of the late Doctor Runyon of Panama
Hospital has purchased a home at 1271 Palmer Avenue, Winter Park,
Fla., and likes Florida very much.
The Wallace Dunhams advise they have a new home in Sarasota, Fla.
Mrs. Mary L. Johnson writes that they have moved into their new
home in Lexington, Ky.
Bill and Ruth Taylor went to New York from Maine for the
recent Shrine convention and report having a grand time. There were
about 200 at the Abou Saad dinner with almost as much talking as at
our reunions. While in New York the Taylors met Emma Townsend
Noe who is attending the N. Y. University.
Tom Reynolds writes from Baltimore that daughter, Georgia, spent
nearly four years as a nurse on a Navy hospital ship in the Pacific. She
entered the University of Maryland Medical School after her release from
the Navy and became a full fledged M. D. on June 9th. She is interning
at Gallinger Hospital, Washington, D. C.
Mr. and Mrs. E. W. Stevens have purchased a home in Detroit and
took possession on July 1st.
Rosie Byrnes advises she has joined the New York Society and
finds that when they have dinners the men eat and have their meeting
separately after which the ladies are allowed to join them. She says she
was told General Goethals' son started this unusual custom when the
society was organized.
Mrs. Taber who returned to Los Angeles early in April after an
extended visit to Florida, the Zone and Chicago writes that she has sold
her home there and is now in an apartment in Altadena. Daughter Alice
and three children visited daughter Audry and family in Wendell, Idaho,
recently. Mrs. Taber reports finding the address of the Tom Boozes in
our yearbook and phoning them when she discovered they lived nearby.
Both are reported well tho Tom has been having some trouble with his
A. G. Dunham of Miami writes that he had a long phone conversa-
tion with E. H. Underwood of that town who told him he had once
driven Alice Roosevelt Longworth from Panama to Colon on the Panama
Railroad and kept his right hand on the control lever all the way across.
We wonder if this is one of those cases where the right hand didn't
know what the left hand was doing.
Milton R. Smith of Kansas City, Mo., wrote in June that he had
been out to Olathe, Kans., to see Commander Faye Powell who expected
to return to Great Lakes later in the month. Powell said John Strauss
had dropped in to see him recently.
Bob Wilcox whose obituary appears in this issue wrote from Miami
on June 23rd how much he had enjoyed the June Canal Record. He said
"It has brought back to my mind old friends whom I had lost track of,
especially interesting to me as I have been in Panama since five years
before the independence of Panama and the start of the Canal. Having
arrived on the Isthmus in 1899 and being established in business in
Colon I was in the position to greet all the construction force as they
arrived. Your Canal Record brings back many pleasant memories. I
have been confined to different hospitals for the past four months and
trust to be on my feet again by the end of this year." Bob passed away
The Maurice Foxes of Detroit advise they have just returned from
a motor trip to Texas and California. Mr. Fox was a draftsman on the
Canal from 1906 to 1915 and was married in Cristobal in 1913. They
have a son, two daughters and five grandsons. Mr. Fox says that G.
Frank Cordner, onetime Canal architect, will leave for Manilla, P. I.,
shortly to accept a government position. His first wife who died several
years ago was Shellie Dunn, Zone school teacher and daughter of Dr.
Dunn, veterinary surgeon and champion checker player in the early days.
John F. Seebt of New Orleans writes that he is 80 years old and
retiring from hard work. He sends regards to his old friends the Kozaks,
Calvits, Tarflingers and Mrs. Kieley.
R. C. Barton of Petersburg, Va., says that Virginia summers are
hotter than Panama ever was. He is employed by the Allied Chemical
and Dye Corporation but expects to retire soon when he reaches the
age of 70. He attended the Washington Society dinner in May where
he met Jack Stanner of the old Culebra-Empire crowd, Bill Fey, Marsh
Benninger, "Pup" Coyle, Bill Bolen, Bill Jay and Dick Hoagland.
Frank Wang writes from Menlo Park, Cal., "Please accept my con-
gratulations on your truly outstanding job in getting out the Panama
Canal Record. I don't see how you do it-I guess we must get better
as we grow older-of course I don't believe this latter theory but at
least it is a pleasant fiction in which perhaps even J. K. B. might
agree on a pleasant day."
Early in June but just too late for inclusion in our last issue came
a nice letter from Mrs. Anna T. Piper of Hot Springs, Ark. She told
of a spring journey by car to California where she visited the Frank
Watkins, T. F. Stochinis and Walter Bissell in the Los Angeles area.
Speaking of the old days Mrs. Piper says that husband, William, along
with Hobert E. Perry and Charles A. Pendry first sailed for Panama on
the old S. S. Finance on June 13th, 1906 and were all in stateroom 13.
They were all assigned to Paraiso and spent their first night in a
batchelor quarters room containing thirteen cots. All during construc-
tion days they were known as the three Ps. Their wives sailed for
the Isthmus on the Advance on January 7, 1907. Perry is now living
in San Diego, Pendry is in Apalachicola, Fla., and Piper died in 1940.
Mrs. Piper is spending the summer in Rochester, N. Y., and hopes to be
in St. Pete for the next reunion.
Another nice letter from Hot Springs which also arrived too late
for our last issue came from the Tom Shirleys who had just returned
from a journey to the northern part of Arkansas where a sizable group
of retired Zonians is located. Their first stop was Russellville to see
Captain and Mrs. Gus Kolle formerly of Cristobal. Gus had been very
ill but is recovering nicely. At Springdale they saw Bill and Carrie
Mathues and they had a regular Panamanian reunion. Their next stop
was Roger where the Cooks are located. Mr. Cook was employed in
the Bureau of Posts at Balboa Heights. Mrs. Cook and their son were
absent in California at the time. In Bentonville they saw the Jimmie
Comans formerly of Cristobal who had as guests the Howard Harrises
on vacation from Gatun. Living in Bentonville also were the Ernest
Williams formerly of Cristobal. Next stop was Fayetteville to see the
Ed Booths who were busy canning strawberries for themselves and the
Newell Shaws formerly of Pedro Miguel whose home is across the street
from the Booths. The berries were picked from the Shaw property
by the Booths as the Shaws had not yet arrived from the Zone where
they had just retired. Shirley reports the fried' chicken dinner prepared
by Mrs. Booth for them and the Mathues was just about perfect. The
Adam Dorns formerly of Pedro Miguel are working hard fixing up
their new home in Hot Springs; Jack Lamb is well and his fishing
camp is thriving; the Jack Reinigs are happy in their new home; the
Matt Robinsons who spent the winter in Hot Springs have left for a trip
east in search of a place to settle and the Shirleys are expecting their
daughter and family from the Zone for a visit soon. They have just
purchased a new Chrysler Royal sedan and were about to start for
Okolona, Ark., to see the Rufus Garretts who have a nice place with a
private lake with good fishing. We certainly enjoyed your letter,
Tom, and you are elected a regular correspondent for the Arkansas
area. Please get your reports in not later than the middle of November,
February, May and August.
The Kent Lamberts write from Chestertown, Md., that recent visitors
were Mr. and Mrs. Pidgeon and Mr. and Mrs. Purvis and daughter.
The Henry Hudsons who are at their Bayside, Me., summer place
as usual report Captain and Mrs. Maurenus Peterson and the T. M.
Drakes among recent visitors.
Former Balboa Pilot W. H. Peterson writes from Santa Monica
that he sees George Tawes and Ducky Bryan occasionally. They both
live in that town. The Captain forwarded an interesting poem about
the various members of the old Red, White and Blue Swim Troupe
which he accompanied to the States in 1924. Unfortunately space will
not be available to print it in this issue.
Mrs. Anna M. Spearman writes from California that daughter, Pat,
and her husband, Commander L. R. Tilburne, are being assigned to
Mare Island in August. In San Diego recently, Mrs. Spearman visited
the Fred Brownes and Mrs. Lucy Goolsby who is chipper as ever. At
the California Society's June picnic in Los Angeles she met many old
friends. The John Wohlfarths have a new home in Englewood, Mrs.
Anna Weston and daughter, Mrs. B. W. O'Neal are staying with them.
Mrs. Anna Bickford was entertaining her daughter, Mary Catherine on a
visit from Bermuda. Mrs. Fred E. Nehls is living in her family home
in San Carlos. Her daughter, Mary, is now Mrs. James De Martini and
lives in San Francisco.
The T. M. Drakes of this city made a trip north in, June by way of
Raleigh and Richmond to Washington where they visited with Mrs.
J. H. Seeley. They crossed the Hudson River at Bear Mountain Bridge
and drove on to Boston where they saw Mrs. Albert Herman, widow of
the former general foreman of the car shops at Balboa. They then
took Route 1 to Bangor, Maine with a stop at Bayside to see the H. H.
Hudsons. They went through the White Mountains by way of Goreham,
N. H., and saw snow on Mt. Washington, then drove along the shore
of Lake Champlain and entered New York at Rouses Point, then west
along the bank of the St. Lawrence to Alexandria Bay where they took
a three hour boat trip among the Thousand Islands. Next came Watkins
Glenn and then down into Pennsylvania and home by way of Blue Ridge
Parkway to Blowing Rock and down thru Augusta, Ga. They covered
4135 miles and report a most enjoyable time. During the trip the
Drakes visited fifteen states and the District of Columbia.
The Walter L. Hershes of St. Pete have also been traveling, taking
along their daughter, Mrs. W. I. Hollowell and children, Cody and
Billie who are on a visit from the Zone. They drove to Silver Springs,
Marineland and St. Augustine in Florida then up to Pennsylvania to
see relatives and came back by way of the Blue Ridge Parkway and
Skyland Drive to Hendersonville, N. C., where they called on the Duke
Lewises who were entertaining the Wendell Greenes, J. C. Myricks and
Barney Coyles, then on back to St. Pete. The Blue Ridge Parkway
drive from Front Royal, Virginia to Asheville, N. C., is a wonderful ex-
perience. Most of the road is from two to four thousand feet above the
surrounding country and the countless beautiful views at the various
turnouts will never be forgotten. While motoring through Virginia the
Hershes drove thru Buchanan and called on Mrs. W. W. Webb, (Gladys
Webb to many of you) and found her very active and busy in her garden.
This outdoor activity is keeping her looking fine and healthy.
Frank A. Anderson of St. Pete sent a card from Visby, Sweden,
where he is visiting his aged mother saying that he had a pleasant trip
over and met on the boat a man from St. Pete and a Miss Pilgrims from
Cristobal. Small world isn't it? Mrs. Anderson is vacationing in New
England and will meet Frank on his return to New York. Son Adrian
and wife visited the Andersons in St. Pete prior to their departure.
Mrs. Dove Prather of Wauchula writes that she has heard from F. F.
Birnbaumer who is in Wellington, New Zealand. His description of the
beauties of the Island are like seeing a travelogue. He mentions that his
daughter Phyllis Jeane was recently elected to the George Washington
University chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, she and her husband Lawrence
W. Strawbridge are now in Palo Alto, California, where he is working
on his Master's degree at Stanford.
The George Ritchey's who have been under the weather with the flu
have moved from Silver Plume, Colorado, to Phoenix, Arizona, and both
feel so much better that they have bought a home and are most con-
tented. They say that they have four months of very hot weather but
don't mind that because they have fallen in love with Phoenix. They
are having some cooler weather and extend the invitation to those of
their friends who happen to pass their way to be sure and stop in as
they would be so happy to see them. They have a three bedroom house
so would be able to take care of them. They hope to get out to Califor-
nia once in a while for the old timers meetings, and when George was in
Tucson met Fred Bradley. It is certainly a small world after all. Lela
says that if anyone has arthritis Phoenix is a wonderful climate to help
it. Hope you Arizona folks get together once in a while.
From Mrs. Blanche E. Shaw of Fayetteville, Ark., comes a wel-
come report of the recent formation of the NORTHWEST ARKANSAS
PANAMA CANAL SOCIETY. The first meeting was held at the home
of the Jack Phillips in Fayetteville and present were: Captain and Mrs.
Phillips, Mr. and Mrs. Edwin W. Booth, Mr. and Mrs. Henry E. Hallin,
Mr. and Mrs. Newell N. Shaw, and Mrs. George Parsons of Fayetteville;
Mr. and Mrs. James B. Coman, and Mr. and Mrs. Ernest Williams of
Bentonville; Mr. and Mrs. Lynn R. Cook of Rogers and son, Lynn, Jr.,
of Venezuela; Mr. and Mrs. William F. Mathues and Norman A. Reppe
of Springdale; Mr. and Mrs. Arthur A. Fessler of Oklahoma and Mr.
and Mrs. W. W. Beardon of California. Phillips was elected President
and Mrs. Shaw, Secretary-Treasurer and we hope Mrs. Shaw will in-
form us regularly of the Society's doings so they may be included in
Mrs. Myrtle Luce, Secretary of the Los Angeles Society writes that
the June 10th picnic was held in Griffith Park, Los Angeles and visitors
included the Ed Lights of Watertown, Cal., Mrs. Winquist and daughter,
Virginia Seiler and son, Carl, Mrs. Koperski, senior, Mr. R. B. Lloyd
who is 92; and from the Zone: the Melansons, Fred Hatchetts, Chubby
Hacketts, Raymond Koperskis, and Mrs. M. F. Bradney; the Fred Browns
from San Diego, Captain and Mrs. Jokstad of Santa Barbara, the Mike
Eders from San Diego, the A. M. Barstows from Fresno, Mrs. Anna
Spearman and Mrs. Fred Nehls from San Carlos. There were nearly
300 in attendance. Mrs. Luce concludes by saying; "To every man
comes eventually the realization that the true beauty of life is pre-
served in his remembrances of yesterday. Like a garden of living
flowers, each passing day brings forth new buds that will blossom to-
morrow in memory."
Secretary George B. Ward of the North Carolina Society wrote in
July that he had just returned from three weeks in Washington where
he met Roger Erdman, Captain Walter F. Christ, former Superintendent
of the Mechanical Division, Lewis Mason and R. M. Roudabush. There
were 44 in attendance at the Carolina picnic at Mills River on May 29th
and they expected 60 at the West Asheville -picnic on July 24th.
Correspondent Gus Hoecker advises from Monrovia, Cal., that a
July 4th picnic was held at the home of the Phil Lupfers at Sierra
Madre attended by: the W. A. Jones, M. E. Hintons, Hugh Thomases,
H. M. Lockwoods, John Kings, W. G. Naylors, T. J. Sullivans and infant
daughter, the Ben Hodges, the Charles Persons, Gus Hoeckers, Meade Bol-
tons, Earl Gilberts, Ellis Stilwells, Ed Nolans, Fred Fitches, Cecil Lang-
dons, Mrs. Alice Ames, Mrs. Raymond DeGrummond, Mr. Lyle DeGrum-
mond, Mrs. G.R.A. Elmgren, Miss Vivian Elmgren, Mrs. Marion Seibold,
Miss Ann Seibold, Mr. Graham Taylor, Mrs. Haynes. Mrs. Bill Dunlap
and Mrs. Bill Schewe were hostesses for a picnic on July 12th at Bixby
Park in Long Beach with 52 in attendance.
The Hoeckers were in Palo Alto recently for the expected arrival
of another grandchild at the home of daughter, Dorothy.
Correspondent H. R. Hoffner tells us from Orlando that the Erbes
have arrived and are looking for a place to settle-they like Orlando
very much and expect to stay there. The Joe Stilson family have also
been there but have decided to go back to Baltimore. Mrs. Prather
visited in Orlando and liked it so well she is thinking of leaving Wau-
chula to live in Orlando. The Louis Stilsons are visiting up north for
the summer. The Pony Mohr's son-in-law and daughter, Mr. and Mrs.
MacDonald from Balboa (Chase Bank) were up there for the summer
visiting with Grandpop and Grandma. They have gone back to Balboa
to live. Mr. Cope who bought a home in Orlando is trying to sell his home
there and may return to St. Petersburg. Ed Spearman, Vern Calloway,
Edgar Murphy and Al Mohr are all getting along fine and love Orlando.
He states that he is going to be a bachelor for about six weeks as Mrs.
Hoffner is making a trip to London to visit the British Festival and from
there will fly to Paris for the Anniversary and will sail from Cherbourg
on the Queen Elizabeth for New York. He also has gotten in a trip to
Boston, drove both ways, had nice cool weather and a most enjoyable trip.
Correspondents Claude Ott and his pinch hitter A. G. Dunham re-
port the organization of a club which they are calling "PANAMA CANAL
DIGGERS OF SOUTH FLORIDA". Their officers are Claude A. Ott,
President, Dan Jones, Vice President and A. G. Dunham, Secretary-Treas-
urer. Picnics are held in the summer, and their next meeting will be held
at Matheson Hammock Park, Sunday, October 14th. Mr. Dunham states:
"On our picnics Dan takes care of our refreshments and ammunition. He
likewise takes in the necessary publicity for our organization in the
local newspapers. He is now in business, as a contractor." They further
state-"Any person (on the gold roll of course) is eligible to become a
member of our Panama Canal Zone Ditch Diggers Association of South
Florida who went down and arrived on any boat, got his or her name
annexed to a payroll be it the ICC-PC-PRR or the Army, Navy or
Marines, and stuck it out at least until the next boat left. This motion
was passed at our last meeting." This is good news and we certainly
congratulate you. Thanks too for the invitation to attend your meetings.
Construction period oldtimers with service prior to April 1, 1914
are concerned with three bills now pending in the House Committep on
Merchant and Marine and Fisheries. These three bills all propose to
amend the Panama Canal Construction Act of May 29, 1944. HR94 pro-
poses to reduce the service period for eligibility from three years to two
years. HR936 proposes to extend the benefits of this act to those who,
because of disability or sickness not resulting from misconduct, were un-
able to complete the required three years of service. HR5217 recently
introduced proposes to increase annuities by 25 per cent to result in a
total of at least $75.00 a month.
Canal Service Retirees are concerned with bills still pending in Con-
gressional Committees. HR2732 in the House Committee on Post Office
and Civil Service proposes to increase retirement annuities by 25 per
cent not to exceed $300 a year. S995 in the Senate Committee on Post
Office and Civil Service contains 31 pages concerning many retirement
details. This proposes increasing annuities of those retiring prior to
April 1, 1948 by $360 with resulting total limited to $2400. The Com-
mittee might consider, raising this limit to $3000 a year. Would some
of you convince these committeemen that even this is inconsistent with the
80 per cent limit applying to those retiring after April 1, 1948. Survivors
would get an increase of $120 a year. Also proposed in this bill is the
exempting of retirement annuities from income taxation.
All of you will realize that the above situation has marked time since
our last two records. There seems to' be some thought that retirees should
not be considered until after pay increases have been considered for
The Committee has been active on Federal Employee Pay Increases
concluding hearings on three bills HR-244, HR-339 and HR-4255 the
latter part of July. On August 23 these three bills were reported out of
committee for consideration of the whole house.
In view of the resulting situation outlined above it is believed now
is the time for all of you and your friends to get active in writing and
urging Senate and House Committeemen toward consideration of the needs
of annuitants trying to exist on incomes fixed years ago. The cost of liv-
ing index took another rise to 185.5 for July. This means your present
annuity dollar is now worth less than 54 cents compared with the 100
cent dollars you paid into the retirement fund. Gabriel Heatter, plugging
for you annuitants recently over Mutual Broadcasting System claimed it
to be confiscation to have your uncle collect 100 cent dollars from you
and later pay back 54 cent dollars.
One of our members outstanding in urging legislation is Ralph
Cutler of Mystic, Conn. Over a period of retirement years Ralph esti-
mates he has written some 5000 letters urging legislation of benefit to
Canalers. How many have you written? Do not answer now but also do
not let George do it all or even Ralph. If all you fixed incomes over a
wide area write a reasonable batch of letters outlining your battle with
the rising cost of living it should do much for our worthy cause.
SIT MAY BE TRUE that in the
Spring a young man's fancy
<_Cr- CO ': lightly turns to thoughts of
5IV CM love. I would not know about
ev JOHN KXb YAI that since I am no longer
young and my memory is not what it used to be, nor my other faculties
either. But there can be no question that in midsummer the fancy of both
young and old turns lightly or heavily to thoughts of the still open, if
somewhat congested, road. Every Tom, Dick and Harry, every so-and-so
and his brother feels an insane urge to pack up and go somewhere. For
this they allege various specious pretexts and! excuses. They want to see
kinfolk, near and distant, from whom they have been separated and who,
incidently, can get along very well without them; or they plan to visit
old friends, who may or may not feel any overwhelming desire to be
visited. No great harm may follow if the sentimental traveller will only
bear in mind Ben Franklin's golden maxim that guests like fish stink
after three days. Since men share many of the stupider traits of sheep and
apes, some of these summer ramblers have no better reason for leaving
home than that everybody else is doing it and they cannot bear the
thought of appearing singular. Still others, and I believe the greater nuam-
ber, are obsessed by the foolish illusion that they can run away from
their anxieties, miseries and fears. Of course they are mistaken. What-
ever they may leave behind to travel light, their troubles sooner or later
will turn up in their baggage.
All this is by way of intimating in the most involved way possible
that I would have preferred to spend the summer in my accustomed niche
on the Indian River rather than on any kind of gypsy trail. But they
would not let me. Early in July the management of the "caravan serai"
in which I have been spending the past five years notified me that they
were going to sandblast and repaint the old barracks, a job estimated to
take six weeks or longer. It seemed wise to get out of the way, so I took
off with Summit, New Jersey, as my ultimate destination, following a cir-
cuitous route and not caring greatly when I got there.
The first night I spent at Daytona Beach intending to have dinner
at a restaurant there highly recommended by Comrade Wm. A. Stevenson.
I was annoyed to find it closed for the day (Sunday). However the motor
court at which I stayed was one of the best, and I found other food which
was edible and nutritious if no treat for an epicure.
The next afternoon found me in unfamiliar country, and after travel-
ing for miles without seeing an attractive court I had to stop, at a very
inferior one north of Augusta, where I had a skimpy and unappetizing
dinner. It began to appear that I never should have left home.
An incident of, the next day was climbing up a long, narrow, wind-
ing mountain road between Greenville and Hendersonville behind trucks
that could make little better than twenty miles an hour ord the grade. You
could not pass without risking your life and to stick behind them for
mile after mile was maddening. On that day too I discovered that some-
body, somewhere and at sometime had removed all the tools from my
car including the jack. From then on I could think of nothing but flat
tires. At Hendersonville I spent an hour buying a jack, but I had to go
on to Ashville and waste more time before I could find a, lug wrench.
Anyone who thinks that motoring under those conditions is fun is en-
titled to his opinion, I do not care to share it. Even, that night my bad
luck continued. I was unfortunate enough to pick an otherwise comfort-
able motor court near Ashville which did not provide ice., They said
that the tap water was so cold that they did not need ice. I certainly
did to mix a Manhattan. To compensate in part for this misadventure
the nearby restaurant at which I ate an excellent dinner exhibited two
unusual features which I heartily commend. On each table, even if oc-
cupied by only a single guest, there was a jug of ice-water and a half-
pound cake of country butter. You heard me correctly, a half-pound
cake. I have grown so accustomed to the miserable little dabs of grease
which even good hotels and restaurants provide that I could scarcely
believe my eyes.
The following day I drove through Blowing Rock to Roanoke. There
is some magnificent mountain scenery along the way, and I have a real
passion for mountain scenery, but I find that when I drive I can't see it.
In mountain country I have to keep my eyes glued to the road. North of
Roanoke I found an excellent motor court and an indifferent dinner.
From Roanoke, I continued' to Natural Bridge, down the Shenandoah
Valley to Winchester and on to Chambersburg, all more or less familiar
country. It was on this stretch that after due consideration I said to my-
self: You poor boob, if you were being paid for this, there might be some
sense in it, but why work and live like a truck driver for anything less
than union wages? It was a question that I could not answer.
A half day's drive beyond Chambersburg I arrived at a mountain
hotel on the upper reaches of the Susquehanna River, where I rested for
five days. From the veranda of this inn, according to the advertising fold-
ers, you had a view of twelve counties. I am willing to believe this, but
I would settle for six and not complain. It was one of those establish-
ments which undertake to provide for the continuous amusement of their
guests presumably on the theory that they are incapable of amusing them-
selve. On one night you were supposed to play cards, on another you
danced. There were two concerts a week, and on Sunday evening you
were privileged and even urged to sing hymns. There was a professional
hostess to see that you followed the program and did not stray from the
herd. I suggested to her that there ought to be at least one night a week
when guests were left to do just as they damn pleased, but she could not
see the point. The meals were good, but there was no cocktail lounge. This
place has its merits, but I found the atmosphere on the whole uncongenial.
And so one day I drove on through Scranton, the Poconos, the Dela-
ware Water Gap to Summit, which was my farthest north, and the end
of the trail.
Eventually of course I had to find my way back to the Indian River.
I wont attempt to describe this return journey. It would bore you as much
as it did me. Now that I am safely back in Florida I propose to stay there.
From Our News Editor Vacationing in
Hendersonville, North Carolina
Sunday, August 25th
This being Sunday and the roads being full of weekend traffic we
decided to spend most of the day at home and catch up on some of our
correspondence. This area is having the best season in its history due
to the light rainfall and the unusual heat in the lowlands and we had
to take a room the day we arrived as we could not locate an apartment
in town. Next day we found one and were settled down before evening.
The local society had a picnic in Pisgah Forest on Wednesday at-
tended by about fifty, and I pitched horseshoes for the first time in lo
these many years. Cap Reppa looks fit as ever but not quite so stout.
The Kellys left this week for New York and Mrs. Luckey accom-
panied them. She will stay with the boy until he enters the University
of Maryland in September, then return to St. Pete.
Monday we go to Weaverville as guests of the Wards who will
take us around to see all the Zonians in that area.
We stopped in to see the Brooks at Skylands on Thursday and
found him up and about.
The days are warm but not hot and we sleep under a blanket every
night. This country is beautiful as ever and I hate to think of leaving on
the fourth but leave we must. We had planned to move around more this
year but the towns are so crowded we thought it best to anchor here and
take daily trips. Had a nice day down at Highlands on Friday. Had
lunch at the Potts House now being operated by the Rocks who run
the Rockholm in St. Pete.
This is the first day we have had a chance to relax since we ar-
rived and I am enjoying it. We will be seeing you soon. The Garling-
tons are reported due here soon, after their recent retirement, and the
A. O. Meyes are due here September 1st for a month's visit.
Earle and Kay Brown
W. H. BUTLER. PRESIDENT JOHN K. BAXTER. COLUMNIST
C. G. CALVIT. VICE-PRESIDENT T. M. DRAKE. CORRES. SEC'Y.
MRS. LUCILLE S. JUDD. SEC'Y-TREAS. EARLE BROWN. NEWS EDITOR
CHARLES H. BEETHAM, CHAPLAIN
Panama Canal Society
ST. PETERSBURG, FLORIDA
Dear Ex-Canal Friends:
You are cordially invited to join the Panama
Canal Society of Florida if you are not a member.
The Canal Record, our news booklet, is issued quar-
terly, and a Year Book is given to members in Jan-
uary of each year.
Dues are $3.00 annually, and payable in January.
Members coming in after July 1st will pay $1.50
for balance of the year.
Our membership is now over 700.
Please fill in the application below and send
your dues to the
PANAMA CANAL SOCIETY OF FLORIDA
P. O. Box 249, Station "A",
APPLICATION FOR MEMBERSHIP
IN PANAMA CANAL SOCIETY OF FLORIDA
Name .----..----- ... -------- ----......--
Wife's Name ..._ ---... --- ------.......
City ........--------------..--------. State ..--...----
Number of Years on Canal ----------------- ----- --
What Division .. --......... ____--.....-- --- .
Amount enclosed ....--. ____ _-_-- -_-..-..__-..______
Our own Irene Wood of Richmond, Cal.
The children were borrowed from
Retirement home of the Albin B. Forstroms, formerly of Cristobal, at Cranston, R.I.
P. O. Box 249 STA. A
Sr. PETERSBURG 2
Sec. 34.66 P.L&R.
U. S. Postage
St. Petersburg, Fla.
Permit No. 603
POSTMASTER: IF ADDRESSEE HAS REMOVED NOTIFY SENDER OF NEW
ADDRESS ON FORM 3547, POSTAGE FOR WHICH IS GUARANTEED
RETURN AND FORWARDING POSTAGE GUARANTEED.
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