A Zonian is a person associated with the Panama Canal Zone, a political entity viable between 1903 and the absorption of the Canal Zone into the Republic of Panama between 1980 and 2000.

It's frequently said by Zonians that drinking the water of the Chagres River (which supplied much of the drinking water for the area) dooms one to forever seek to return.

Many of these people consider themselves to be Panamanian and U.S. citizens, although quite a few say that they are only American or only Panamanian. Many of them are descendants of the civilian American workers who came to the area during the early 1900s to work and maintain the canal. Nowadays many Zonians work at the canal itself. Others of them may have been American citizens born in the Canal Zone or who spent their childhood there. A significant presence of American canal workers remained in the Canal region until 1999.

The Panama Canal Society holds a reunion for Zonians every year, usually in Orlando, Florida.

Notable Zonians


Further reading

  • Mellander, Gustavo A.; Nelly Maldonado Mellander (1999). Charles Edward Magoon: The Panama Years. Río Piedras, Puerto Rico: Editorial Plaza Mayor. ISBN 1563281554. OCLC 42970390.
  • Mellander, Gustavo A. (1971). The United States in Panamanian Politics: The Intriguing Formative Years. Danville, Ill.: Interstate Publishers. OCLC 138568.

External links

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