Index of Images

Panama Canal Construction Days
Portrait of the Towns
Camp Otis

Colorized Picture Post Cards - Camp Otis

Looking up a street
Soldiers by barracks
Cutting grass
10th Inf. Band
Mounted Orderlies
Open air washroom
Cascadas Background
Down in the Cut

Black and White Photos and Picture Post Cards

Panoramic View
View from the Cut
Street Scene

Pistol Practice Day
Bugler Sounding Call
Canal Defender
Commander and Staff
Commander and Wife
Troop Inspection
Heavy Marching Orders
U.S. Marines on hike
Machine Gun Platoon
Parade Field
Tent Inspection
Pup Tent and Equipment
Rifle Range
Blanket Roll Inspection
Engine Shed Formation

The Tenth Regiment of Infantry  - United States Army - Camp Otis
by George Chevalier



Camp Otis - In 1911 the labor camp near Las Cascadas was turned over to the United States Army for a temporary post, and quarters were hastily devised to accommodate a regiment of infantry hurried down from the States for no particular purpose that was apparent.  It was named Camp E. S. Otis, in honor of the Major General of that same name. "The Panama Guide", by John O. Colins, 1912

Photos in this presentation are believed to be all in Camp Otis.  However, there were many different military units in this area throughout the years.  The photos look very much like Camp Otis, but may not all be from the first Canal construction era unit, the 10th Infantry, United States Army.  It is hard to collect exact information as there isn't many records available to verify.  I plan to do more
research regarding these lost years of U.S. Military history of the Panama Canal.   I have included a presentation by George Chevalier that are known facts about the 10th Infantry, U.S.A.  His Father was in this unit.  (See the link to the left.)

Military Units in the area during and after the construction of the Canal.

10th Inf. 10/1911 to 5/1917 at Camp Otis
5th Inf. 11/1914 to Summer 1918 at Empire [Gave up 514 men to form the 33rd Inf. in 1916].
29th Inf. 1915 to Fall 1918 at Camp Gaillard[Culebra]
33rd Inf. 7/1916 to 12/07/41 at Empire and Fort Clayton

As you can see there were three other regiments quartered in those old ICC Construction Towns while the 10th was still at Camp Otis.
The 10th Inf. was the first Army Unit and came during the actual construction of the Canal.  The other Army Units came after the official opening of the Panama Canal.

Reference Sources:

  • The Panama Guide, by John O. Collins, 1912, I.C.C. Press, Quartermaster’s Department, Mount Hope, C. Z.
  • Resources and Research by George Chevalier.
  • Canal Record
  • Photos and Post Cards submitted and owned by George Chevaliar and Robert Karrer.

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