The Path Between the Seas Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

David McCullough
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. Lieutenants Lucien Napoleon-Bonaparte Wyse and Armand Reclus plan a sea-level canal for Central America between Wyse's 1878 and 1879 visits to Washington, while Ferdinand de Lesseps does what?

2. Yeas were primarily French, yet A.G. Menocal's analysis of the 1879 Congris International d'Ytudes du Canal Interocyanique canal site vote showed how many were French Society of Engineers members?

3. After forming his private investment syndicate, Ferdinand de Lesseps next obtains the Wyse Concession when he purchases the Turr Syndicate for $2 million to be paid how?

4. The cream of the crop of 19th-century French engineers are trained at what two institutions (the most brilliant at the former, and only its top graduates at the latter)?

5. Who ensures the 1879 Congris International d'Ytudes du Canal Interocyanique opens in May, the best time to be in Paris, has final say as to the agenda, rules, committee make-up, and entertainment?

Short Essay Questions

1. What is the result of Gaston Blanchet's proposal for a 400' wide swath to ease surveying?

2. As hard as they work, what are some of the problems the French engineers encounter?

3. What critical things transpire in regard to the French canal project in July 1886?

4. What does Ferdinand de Lesseps and those accompanying him encounter at Barbacoas?

5. As the Morgan Committee rejects the recommendations of the Walker Commission, what are the rumors that are circulating around Washington?

6. The chances against Panama being selected as the location for a canal over Nicaragua are reportedly 100 to 1, until what two events occur?

7. What does Ferdinand de Lesseps accomplish between the 1879 Congris International d'Ytudes du Canal Interocyanique in Paris and sailing for Panama in December that year?

8. What takes place in Havana, Cuba, during the Spanish-American War of 1898 that encourages Theodore Roosevelt in his zeal for a canal in Central America?

9. In mid-November 1887, what sort of new locks does Ferdinand de Lesseps state Alexandre Gustava Eiffel will be designing and building?

10. What role does Chicago Times-Herald reporter Walter Wellman play in the Central American canal scenario?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Sentiment as to where to put an American canal is overwhelmingly one-sided favoring Nicaragua, until Phillippe Banau-Varilla and William Nelson Cromwell emerge on behalf of the "Panama Lobby." Comparing and contrasting the two, how are they similar and how are they different? Do they work well together, or function better separately? Who is the most effective in getting things accomplished? Do they work in a straightforward fashion toward legitimately achieving their goals or not? What is the approach each takes toward accomplishing a task?

Essay Topic 2

David McCullough notes in his initial chapter that all early 19th-century canal plans are preposterous. Every survey is flawed due to assumptions and inaccurate data. Yet the Suez Canal was successfully opening on November 1869, after ten years of construction. It is twice as long as the Panama Canal, which did not open until 1914. Actual work on the Panama did not start until 1880, a decade following the Suez opening. Central America afforded at least 19 possible locations to select from. Explain what causes so many problems in constructing the Panama Canal. What took so long? Why was there such a lengthy battle in Washington? What caused the loss of so many lives?

Essay Topic 3

William Nelson Cromwell locates and talks John Stevens into replacing John Wallace. What type of training, schooling, and experience does Stevens have? What successes has he enjoyed? Who is supporting him? What sort of leadership does he exercise? What takes place when he moves the engineering office to Culebra? What successes does Stevens achieve? What failures does he endure? Why is Stevens replaced?

(see the answer keys)

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