Pedro Miguel of the Panama Canal Zone

Pedro Miguel of the Panama Canal Zone

Will Hobby mailed most of his letters from the town of Pedro Miguel.

This is where the French began work on January 15, 1888.

When the Americans took inventory of French leavings in 1904-05, there were only a dozen buildings in Pedro Miguel of which three were beyond repair and had to be destroyed.

Pedro Miguel, a railroad hub with 754 residents, was President Roosevelt’s first stop when he toured the Canal area in November, 1906.

By 1907, when Will Hobby arrived in Panama, the town had a nine-track railroad yard, coaling plant, and repair shop. Electricity was installed that year.

By 1908 the Pedro Miguel School enrolled 491 pupils, a commissary served all employees, and a Canal Commission truck garden supplied fresh vegetables.

Railroad station at Pedro Miguel, Panama Canal Zone

Canal employees could ride the railroad for a small price. This gave them access to both ocean sides, the major cities of Colon and Panama City, and the various commissaries and recreational opportunities provided for (at least American) workers. It appears from the women’s dresses and men’s hats that this postcard photo of the station at Pedro Miguel was taken during Canal construction days.

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