Wednesday, August 15, 2012

On 98 Years of The Panama Canal and My Grandmother's Safe Walking Over It

It was on this date in 1914 that the Panama Canal opened.  That's a piece of infrastructure that has paid huge dividends, economically, for the U.S.

A reworking of the canal to handle wider ships is poised to open soon in this Century.  That move bodes well for East Coast ports and, interestingly enough, for Midwest industrial inland locations too. 

The import/export pricing that was Western-port dominated now has competition.  The dividing line for that is right through Ohio!  Competitive shipping prices are another Ohio advantage.

There's a personal note here too.  When the canal was less than 10 years old, my Grandmother lived in the Panama Canal Zone.  She was an Army brat and her father was an officer stationed there.  My Great Aunt Jane tells the story of walking to school with my grandmother and having to cross the Panama Canal to get to their school.  Looking at the photo above, that walk to school was no cake walk.  Glad Grandma walked safely.


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  2. And when your grandmother and my father walked across there was a railing on one side only. They said it was quite scary after a ship had gone through and the water level was way down. They walked from Camp Gaillard across to Pedro Miguel.