If I hadn’t committed to scanning and posting all of the photos in Daddy’s album, I might have skipped this “bell picture.” It’s not a great photo, I know that.
But I did commit and so I pulled this one out of the album. I imagined some tough times ahead as I tried to research “some bell in Panama”, but I found this note by my father on the back:
Seeing that note and examining the photo (the bell is clearly stamped “1902″ and much less clearly “Shawm??”), I was off to Google. I quickly (well, somewhat quickly) found this site which not only has much better pictures of the bell, it explained:
The 9,606 gross ton steamship “Shawmut” was built in 1902 for the Boston Steamship company and was sold in 1908 to the Panama Canal Commission and renamed the “Ancon.” It was used to haul cement and other material components required for the construction of the Panama Canal from the US to the port of Cristobal. The ship made the first official passage of the Panama canal on 15 August 1914 and officially opened the Panama Canal.- Don Winner
Thank you, Mr. Winner. I now know a bit more about a history that my father felt was important enough to document with photos. The bell is housed at The Panama Canal Administration Building — pictures of the administration building coming soon.
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Filed under: Miscellaneous