United States, Panama Canal Zone, Employment Records and Sailing lists (FamilySearch Historical Records)

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United States, Panama Canal Zone, Employment Records and Sailing lists, 1905-1937 .
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This article describes a collection of records at FamilySearch.org.
Panama Canal Zone, United States
United States flag.png
Flag of the United States of America
NARA seal300.jpg
Seal of the National Archives
Record Description
Record Type Employment and Sailing Lists
Record Group RG 185: Records of the Panama Canal, 1848-1999
Collection years 1905-1937
National Archives Identifier 514
FamilySearch Resources
Related Websites
Archive
National Archives and Records Administration



What is in the Collection?

The collection consists of an index and images of employee records (service history cards), sailing lists of contract laborers, and employee identification records (metal check cards and applications). This collection corresponds to NARA Record Group 185, Records of the Panama Canal, 1848-1999. Index to applications for Photo Metal Checks, 1918-1919 courtesy of the National Archives.

You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for United States, Panama Canal Zone, Employment Records and Sailing lists, 1905-1937.

Collection Content

Sample Images

What Can this Collection Tell Me?

The records may include the following information:

  • Name
  • Age
  • Birth place
  • Residence
  • Change in status
  • Position or job
  • Service dates
  • Salary
  • Where Appointed
  • File number
  • Remarks

How Do I Search the Collection?

To begin your search it is helpful to know:

  • The full name of your ancestor.
  • The birth date and birth place of your ancestor.
  • The residence of your ancestor.
  • The approximate dates of employment.


Search by Name by visiting the Collection Page:
Fill in your ancestor’s name in the initial search page. This search will return a list of possible matches. Compare the information about those in the list to what you already know about your own ancestors to determine if this is the correct family or person.

View images in this collection by visiting the Browse Page:
To search the collection you will need to follow this series of links:
⇒Select "Browse through images" on the initial collection page
⇒Select the appropriate "Record Description" which takes you to the images.

Look at each image comparing the information with what you already know about your ancestors to determine if the image relates to them. You may need to look at several images and compare the information about the individuals listed in those images to your ancestors to make this determination.

With either search keep in mind:

  • There may be more than one person in the records with the same name.
  • You may not be sure of your own ancestor’s name.
  • Your ancestor may have used different names or variations of their name throughout their life.

For tips about searching on-line collections see the on-line article FamilySearch Search Tips and Tricks.

What Do I Do Next?

When you have located your ancestor’s employment record, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. Save a copy of the image or transcribe the information. These pieces of information may give you new biographical details about your ancestor. Add this new information to your records of each family. You should also look for leads to other records about your ancestors.

I Found Who I was Looking for, What Now?

  • Compile a list of other personnel with the same surname. This is especially helpful if the surname is unusual.
  • When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.

I Can't Find Who I'm Looking for, What Now?

  • Look for variant spellings of the names. You should also look for nicknames and abbreviated names.
  • Look for another index. Local genealogical and historical societies often have indexes to local records.
  • Search the indexes and records of nearby counties.
  • Try alternative search methods such as only filling in the surname search box (or the given name search box) on the landing page leaving the other box empty and then click on search. This should return a list of everyone with that particular name. You could then browse the list for individuals that may be your ancestor.



Citing this Collection

Citing your sources makes it easy for others to find and evaluate the records you used. When you copy information from a record, list where you found that information. Here you can find citations already created for the entire collection and for each individual record or image.

Collection Citation:

"United States, Panama Canal Zone, Employment Records and Sailing lists, 1905-1937." Database with Images. FamilySearch. http://FamilySearch.org : accessed 2017. Citing NARA Record Group 185. College Park, Maryland: National Archives and Records Administration, Archives II, n.d.

Record Citation (or citation for the index entry):

The citation for a record is available with each record in this collection, at the bottom of the record screen. You can search records in this collection by visiting the search page for United States, Panama Canal Zone, Employment Records and Sailing lists, 1905-1937.

Image citation:

The image citation is available by clicking on the Information tab at the bottom left of the screen. You can browse through images in this collection by visiting the browse page for United States, Panama Canal Zone, Employment Records and Sailing lists, 1905-1937.


How Can I Contribute to the FamilySearch Wiki?

We welcome user additions to FamilySearch Historical Records wiki articles. We are looking for additional information that will help readers understand the topic and better use the available records. We also need translations for collection titles and images in articles about records written in languages other than English. For specific needs, please visit WikiProject FamilySearch Records.

Please follow these guidelines as you make changes. Thank you for any contributions you may provide.