Review of The Path Between the Seas: The Creation of the Panama Canal, 1870–1914 (1977)

Text

David McCullough (writer).

Read in 2021.

From the follies of Napoleon III to a planned opening ceremony canceled over the outbreak of WW1, from the miasma theory of disease to the germ theory and early modern pest control, and from steam to electricity, with tens of thousands of workers killed under charismatic, psychopathic pioneers like Ferdinand de Lesseps. Along the way in this multi-generational megaproject, the US supported the secession of Panama from Colombia and intervened with arms. A well-told epic of the industrial age.

non-fiction text