La Central, Colonia Penal, Coiba Island

ID: SIA2009-4265 or Wetmore Negative Number 6045

Creator: Wetmore, Alexander 1886-

Form/Genre: Photographic print

Date: January 13, 1956

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

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Summary

La Central, Colonia Penal, Coiba Island from the head of the Punta Damas trail on January 13, 1956. An expanse of palm trees sweeps diagonally across the image. Amongst the palm trees are many buildings. The beach and shoreline, including a dock, are visible, and there are mountains in the distance. There is a grassy area in the foreground.

Category

Historic Images of the Smithsonian

Notes

  • The image was taken by Smithsonian Secretary and ornithologist Alexander Wetmore while on a scientific expedition in Panama and Coiba Island. Wetmore Negative Number 6045
  • 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.

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 13, 1956

Restrictions & Rights

No restrictions

Topic

  • Mountains
  • Scientific expeditions
  • Docks
  • Landscapes
  • Architecture
  • Beaches
  • School field trips
  • Palm trees
  • Islands
  • Natural areas
  • Penal colonies
  • Mountains--Panama
  • Buildings--Panama
  • Field trips

Place

  • Panama
  • Coiba Island (Panama)

Form/Genre

  • Photographic print
  • Landscape
  • Exterior

ID Number

SIA2009-4265 or Wetmore Negative Number 6045

Physical description

Number of Images: 1; Color: Black and white; Size: 4.75w x 4.5h; Type of Image: Landscape, Exterior; Medium: Photographic print

Full Record

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