Photo of the Week
July 14, 2019

At the Panama Canal Society Reunion this year, I was very lucky in finding a nine photo set of the old Strangers Club in Colon.  For the next few weeks I am going to share these wonderful old photos.  They are quite a valuable study and preservation of the architectural history of this old building. 

These two photos are taken of the outside of the building in the 1920s by the look of the vehicles.  In the coming weeks we will take a tour inside the building.

Naturally I have done some extensive searching on the Internet and in my personal library for some history of this building and who actually owned and ran the place.  I have found out that this building was the Union Club for the City of Colon and was a high end gathering place for the who's who back in the days.

From the Panama Railroad Company and Panama Canal publication 1928:

" There are two social clubs in the Republic of Panama whose membership is divided among the American residents of the Isthmus and Panamanians. They are the Union Club of Panama City, and the Strangers Club in Colon. These also are popular meeting places for Panamanians and Americans and provide for social contacts among the two peoples."

From the Canal Record 1907 - 1908 which dates the beginning of the Strangers' Cub:

"The Strangers' Club of Cristobal and Colon gave its first reception and dance at the club rooms in Colon the night of July 30.  The club is composed largely of Commission and Panama Railroad employees, and has leased the second floor of the building on Front Street, Colon, with a broad veranda looking out on Limon bay."

I have found some information that the club was used by the Rotary quite often.  I will continue to search around for more information as the we venture into this study.

I can't believe there isn't more information readily available pertaining the history of the Colon Strangers' Club.

Note: I have started embedding watermarks on my photos as I have been finding my photos all over the Internet.



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