panama-history-05.jpg
Goethals Memorial in front of the Panama Canal Administration Building 

In 1907 US President Theodore Roosevelt appointed George Washington Goethals chief engineer of the Panamal Canal. The building of the Canal had met with many difficulties and delays under previous chiefs. Goethals did much to make operations more efficient throughout the Canal project, with great attention to details large and small. A major part of his success was his particular attention to sanitation and control of disease carrying mosquitos, which greatly reduced incidence of disease and death among Canal workers.

In 1914 Goethals saw the completion of the Canal almost a full year ahead of schedule.