Major General George Washington Goethals’ Home – 1888-1907

Major General George Washington Goethals' Home historical marker
Marker located on Wood Avenue in front of the University of North Alabama campus

The great engineering genius of the Panama Canal lived at this site from 1888 until 1907. As a young lieutenant, Goethals was sent to Florence to speed up the work on the Muscle Shoals Canal Project which effectively bypassed the serious river impediment known as the Muscle Shoals. His successful accomplishments here were considered as an apprenticeship that led to his renowned work in the building of the Panama Canal (1908-1914). Goethals later remarked that his work on the Muscle Shoals Canal loomed far larger in his memory than the canal in Panama.