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Por la costa Norte - Rumbo a nombre de Dios
Nombre de Dios Panama

Founded as a Spanish colony in 1510 by Diego de Nicuesa, it was the first European settlement on the Isthmus of Panama. Originally a major port of call for the Spanish treasure fleet, Nombre de Dios was situated near an unhealthy swamp, and was nearly impossible to fortify. Francis Drake sacked the colony in June of 1572, and ambushed the Silver Train, a mule convoy carrying a fortune in precious metals, in March of the following year.

Nombre de Dios Panama

Set on a deepwater bay deemed easier to defend from the ravages of pirates, Portobelo was heavily fortified and for 150 years played host to the famous trade fairs, when the Spanish treasure fleet came to collect the riches that traveled across the isthmus on mule trains from Panama City and to leave merchandise brought from Seville for distribution throughout the Americas. Unsurprisingly, the wealth concentrated in the royal warehouses here was an irresistible target for the pirates who scoured the Spanish Main.

Nombre de Dios Panama

By the 17th century Nombre de Dios had been all but abandoned by the Spanish, and its importance to the treasure fleets had been surpassed by Portobelo. The town still exists today, though it is nowhere near as large as it was in the 16th century.

Nombre de Dios Panama

Prior to the construction of the Panama Canal, Nombre de Dios was the starting point of a series of rivers and paths by which ships could cross from the Caribbean to the Pacific Ocean.


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Last Modified August 22, 2006