The Story of Panama the New Route to India

Cover of book The Story of Panama the New Route to India
Categories: Nonfiction

Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER II THE FR


ENCH ATTEMPT In March, 1876, at the suggestion of Count Ferdinand de Lesseps, the Society of Commercial Geography at Paris organized a committee to go into the subject of the projected Isthmian Canal. De Lesseps, whose success in engineering the operations at Suez commended him to the Society, was chosen to preside at the deliberations of this body. The Committee held its first meeting at Paris in May, 1879. It at once took upon itself an international character, as the name under which it worked implied?"The International Scientific Congress." Representatives from nearly all the civilized nations of the world were present. The discussion lasted for several months, but the conclusions o'f the Committee may be summed up in these words : "The Congress thinks that the construction of an interoceanic waterway on a constant level is possible ; that in the interests of commerce and navigation a sea level canal is desirable ; that the most practicable route lies between the Gulf of Limon and the Bay of Panama." The Committee believed the cost would approximate $240,000,000. Here, then, were the three paramount questions : (1) What kind of canal was to be built ? (2) What was to be its location? (3) What would it cost? The wisdom of the conclusions of the Committee has been confirmed on only one point, that of location. A sea level canal is now believed to be out of the question, even with present-day machinery and methods. It is estimated that the lock canal will cost $375,000,000, and it is certain that a sea level canal would cost several times that amount, if indeed it could be built at all. As the plans of De Lesseps had been incorporated in the Committee's report (against the vote of a majority of the engineers on the Committee) and as the Count had dem...

The Story of Panama the New Route to India
+Write review

User Reviews:

Write Review: