THE LINDA HALL LIBRARY HISTORY OF SCIENCE COLLECTION
William Dampier: 1679-1707
When Dampier began his journey around the world, he only intended
to go as far as "the Bay of Campeachy in the Gulph of
Mexico to cut Log-wood." He was invited to go to Jamaica,
and his adventures continued from there.
Map of the Isthmus of Darien and Panama
from A New Voyage Round the World: London:
Printed for James Knapton, 1697.
In the course of their journeys, Dampier and the rest of the crew crossed the Isthmus twice on foot. The second trip, from the Pacific to the Atlantic, took him 23 days; Dampier learned that the Miskito Indians could do it in less than two days from more advantageous points. The map provides excellent details of the area which, two centuries later, would be chosen as the site for the Panama Canal.