Crew Loading the Bongo

ID: SIA2009-4258 or Wetmore 6019

Creator: Wetmore, Alexander 1886-

Form/Genre: Photographic print

Date: January 6, 1956

Citation: Smithsonian Institution Archives, Alexander Wetmore Papers, Record Unit 7006, Box: 183, Folder Album: Panama and Coiba, 1956

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Summary

  • Alexander Wetmore's expedition crew was transferring boxes, bags, and parcels tied with string containing gear to the bongo near Coiba Island on January 6, 1956. Six wooden poles are chained to the bow of the bongo. Some of these poles may be oars.
  • The image was taken by Smithsonian Secretary and ornithologist Alexander Wetmore while on a scientific expedition in Panama and to Coiba Island.
  • From 1919 to 1991, Coiba Island was a penal colony. Fear of the prison and its inmates deterred visitors from the island. As such, about 80% of the natural areas on the island remain undisturbed. The island is also host to many endemic species. Both of these factors made the island ideal for Wetmore's scientific expedition. The officers and convicts pictured in Wetmore's images from the expedition were part of the penal colony. Some even worked as laborers for the expedition. Today, the island is no longer a penal colony. Instead, it is one of 38 islands composing Coiba National Park, a World Heritage Site.

Author

Wetmore, Alexander 1886-

Category

Historic Images of the Smithsonian

Contained within

Smithsonian Institution Archives, Alexander Wetmore Papers, Record Unit 7006, Box: 183, Folder Album: Panama and Coiba, 1956

Contact information

Institutional History Division, Smithsonian Archives, 600 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20024-2520, SIHistory@si.edu

Date

January 6, 1956

Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions

Topic

  • Field work
  • Field trips
  • Birds
  • Scientific expeditions
  • Boats and boating
  • Ornithology--Field work
  • Ornithology
  • Panamanians

Place

  • Panama
  • Veraguas
  • Coiba Island
  • Coiba Island (Panama)
  • Montijo District

Form/Genre

  • Photographic print
  • Group, candid

ID Number

SIA2009-4258 or Wetmore 6019

Physical description

Number of Images: 1; Color: Black and White; Size: 4.5w x 4.5h; Type of Image: Group, Candid; Medium: Photographic print

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