The Museum is housed in what was formerly the Christian Mission Church built by Barbadian workers in the year 1910
The West Indian history is kept alive in part by the Afro-Caribbean Museum. The Museum is housed in what was formerly the Christian Mission Church, which was built in El Marañón, Calidonia, by Barbadian workers in the year 1910.
It is a wooden structure that reflects a Caribbean style of architecture, and there is only one main exhibit space that contains historic photographs and domestic items that portray the history and living conditions of the West Indian immigrants who began migrating to Panama for the construction of the railroad in 1850 and later arrived in greater numbers for the construction of the Panama Canal in the first two decades of the twentieth century.
Our goal is to make sure the contributions of tens of thousands of laborers from Jamaica, Barbados and other Caribbean islands aren’t forgotten.
Panama’s black population is approximately 14 percent which represents 460,977 Afro-descendants living mainly in Panama City, Colon City and Isla Colón in Bocas del Toro. They have preserved their ancients customs and traditions which adds to the mojo of Panama which has become a melting pot of different ethnic groups from around the world.
Among the exhibits at the museum are a model of the overcrowded rooming houses occupied by black laborers in the Caledonia and El Chorillo neighborhoods, the medicinal herbs they used to try to cure themselves and mock-ups of a bedroom and kitchen typical of laborers’ modest homes.
Facilities: Bathrooms, parking, guided visits, small showcase of books and souvenirs, and a small library
Location: The Museum is located in the Calidonia area of the City of Panama, 24th Street East and Justo Arosemena Avenue.
SAMAAP Meetings: Saturdays from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. in the office of the Museum
Entry fee: Adults and Tourists B/1.00, retirees and university students, B/. 75, students B/.25