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Panama Hats

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62708.  Thu Mar 30, 2006 6:45 am Reply with quote

Panama Hats are made in:

a) Panama
b) Ecuador
c) Chile
d) Brazil

Despite their name, Panama Hats herald from Ecuador.

There are two prominent theories as to why this is. The first claims that gold seekers bought imported hats in Panama on their way to California in the mid 1800s. The more likely reason is that the hats gained global prominence during the construction of the Panama Canal. Indeed, President Theodore Roosevelt was famously photographed wearing a Panama when visiting the construction of the canal in 1906.

The hats, which date back to the 16th century, are made from the plaited leaves of the toquilla palm, or ‘Carludovica palmata’. They are mostly produced in the Ecuadorian town of Cuenca, although the finest examples come from the towns of Montecristi and Biblian. The black band that now adorns many a Panama is said to originate from 1901, in respect of the death of Queen Victoria (of England). In 1944, the hats were Ecuador's primary export item.

The time it takes to make a Panama varies enormously. A low-grade hat can be knocked out in a matter of hours, whereas a £1000 hat (and, yes, they can be that expensive) can take a couple of months to finesse.

Jumping Jack on Ecuador:

Ecuador is named after the Spanish word for ‘equator’. Its capital is Quito, and it is the world’s major supplier of balsa wood for model aircraft. Ecuadorians eat guinea pigs; if you would like to do the same, remember that the best bits are the cheeks. The country has only ever won a single medal at the Olympics, a gold in the 20km men’s walk at the Atlanta 1996. Roughly 94% of the population is Roman Catholic.

62720.  Thu Mar 30, 2006 7:01 am Reply with quote

Links with the Darién scheme.

Moreover, some old Panama facts:

The lowest toll paid to cross the Panama canal was US$ 0.36 and was paid by Richard Halliburton who crossed the Canal swimming in 1928.

Due to the shape of the country, to travel from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean on the Panama Canal, you have to travel in an Easterly direction.

62743.  Thu Mar 30, 2006 7:41 am Reply with quote

After having got thoroughly fed up living as a poor person in Paris, Paul Gauguin decided to move off to Panama to 'live like a native'. This meant, unfortunately, having to work on the Panama Canal project. He was dismissed after only two weeks.

Frederick The Monk
62774.  Thu Mar 30, 2006 9:16 am Reply with quote

eggshaped wrote:
The lowest toll paid to cross the Panama canal was US$ 0.36 and was paid by Richard Halliburton who crossed the Canal swimming in 1928.

The most expensive toll for canal passage to date was charged on September 25, 2003 to the luxurious passenger vessel Coral Princess, which paid $226,194.25 for passage

63248.  Sat Apr 01, 2006 9:29 am Reply with quote


I'm rather against multiple choice as a format for the show but in any case I'm not quite sure what this question is going to acheive. No one's going to fall for the obvious forfeit if it's put like this.

You need to be a little more cryptic, I think eg:

[b]Name a country which is famous for making hats[/i].

The forfeit would then be PANAMA, and you would need a non-negative answer, such as BOLIVIA which makes more than 100 varieties of hat.

64606.  Mon Apr 10, 2006 7:07 am Reply with quote

According to this site:

The first Spaniards in the new world,, discovering strange headgear being worn by some of the natives, took this light translucent material for vampire skin. For a people who were already subjugated by these pompous invaders, it was amusing to deceive them with such stories. Archeological discoveries of ceramic figures wearing curious hats have been made on the Ecuadorian coast as far back as 4,000 B.C. These hats, and the stories associated with them, are the predecessors of what we now know as the Panama hat.

Link to draculin.

1193894.  Fri Jun 03, 2016 8:17 am Reply with quote

Beginning in the early to mid-1600’s, hat weaving evolved as a cottage industry along the Ecuadorian coast. Throughout the 17th and 18th Century, hat weaving and wearing continued to grow rapidly across all of Ecuador. Ones like these - spammy link removed by Qi Moderator


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