Object of the Day

Tropical Foliage near Bohio

The photograph’s caption places this scene somewhere near Bohio, but provides no more information. We are looking to expand our knowledge about the tropical foliage and place seen in this image.


Is there a name for this place? What is the name of the body of water seen here?

Does anyone recognize the types of plants featured in the image?

Have you visited this location before? If so, please share your stories about this spot.

If you have any knowledge of this scenery near Bohio, please share with us in the comments section!


  • William McLaughlin

    Taken from John O. Collins book “The Panama Guide” 1912:

    “Bohio was originally a bush hamlet in 1862 when Otis wrote. Until recently it has been called Bohio Soldado (Soldier’s Home). The French made it the site of one of their district headquarters in 1882, erected a machine shop on the west bank of the Chagres River and did considerable work there under the old sea-level plan for a canal, which was excavated to this place to a sufficient depth of light draft boats.
    Under the French plan for a lock canal, Bohio was the site for the first dam, and the excavation for the locks at this point can be seen in the hills on the opposite side of the river from the railroad. As it existed during the American regime the village has been a relic from the French period. Such surveys, investigation, and excavation as were necessary here were done by men occupying the French houses. In recent years Bohio has been the center of a small local trade in vegetable, brought in form the jungle cy canoe and pack animals, in exchange for groceries and liquors sold in Chinese and native shops. At the time of the official census in 1908, it had 526 inhabitants, of whom 417 were colored and native, 69 white and 10 Chinese.
    At Bohio the Americans carried on investigations in 1904 and 1905 to determine whether that location would be used for locks and a dam, and in 1909 excavation by hand and with steam shovel was carried on to remove a small hill and part of a dump made where the machine shops were situated in the French days, and where they carried on work for the lock emplacement, the edge of a hill is now being remove by a contractor. The work at this point typical of all that is between Gatun and Culebra Cut, consisting as is done of the excavation of small elevation in the canal channel and the toes of the hills the project into the prism.”

    The plants in the photo are typical Panama jungle plants. The body of water must be one of the smaller streams and not that of the Chagres River as it is small.

    Bohio is now underwater, but I have had the pleasure of SCUBA diving on the site and harvested some nice old bottles. We found a French era work train still on the tracks which included a small steam crane and flat cars.

    Much work has been done here recently with the Canal widening project with the removal of De Lesseps’s island. Which was part of the proposed French Bohio locks.

    Nice old capture in time.

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