The End of the Day, Gatun Lock, 1912

Not on Viewexpand_more

Joseph Pennell prided himself on immortalizing the world's great industrial behemoths, but he believed his life would not be complete unless he could chronicle the greatest wonder of them all—the building of the Panama Canal. Photographs show him wandering the site in his tweeds, campstool in hand. He chanced to capture this amazing scene at quitting time, as the workers were being hauled, clinging to a chain, out of eighty-five-foot-deep Gatun Lock. "No one could imagine it—and I had only a minute to see it," Pennell wrote. He sketched such scenes on special coated transfer paper and executed the prints on lithographic stones back home in Philadelphia.

The End of the Day, Gatun Lock
Artist Life
1857 - 1926
Accession Number
William M. Ladd
Catalogue Raisonne
Wuerth 226
Curator Approved

This record has been reviewed by our curatorial staff but may be incomplete. These records are frequently revised and enhanced. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email

Does something look wrong with this image? Let us know