Independence Day: November 3
Independence Day is a public holiday in Panama.
November in Panama has lots of Independence celebrations. On November 3 is celebrated the Independence of Panama from Colombia in 1903, also known as Colon Day, that jumpstarts Panama’s Patriotic Month. While on November 10 is the day that Panamanians remember the ‘uprising in Villa Los Santos’ against the Spaniards; and finally on November 28 is celebrated the National Day, a celebration of Independence from Spain in full for Panama.
History of Independence Day
After achieving independence from Spain on November, 1821 Panama became a department of Colombia for the next eight years. The Gran Republic of Colombia was by then composed of Colombia, Venezuela and Ecuador. Panama federalist forces still tried to fight for Independence once again for Panama, and almost got it in 1831, also later between 1840 and 1841 a brief independent state was created, and finally during the Thousand Days War, which devastated Colombia and Panama. But still Panama was part of Colombia and no agreement was reached between Liberal Panama parties and Colombians. In 1903, the United States and Colombia signed the Hay-Herran Treaty to end the construction of the Panama Canal, but the Colombian Congress did not pass the Treaty on August 12, 10903. Panamanians wanted the canal finished and were angered with the Colombians, so were the United States that decided to support the independent movement for Panama. A warship was sent to Panama to protect Panamanians from the Colombian armies, and in November 1903, Panama proclaimed its Independence from Colombia.
Independence Day Traditions, Customs and Activities
Panama celebrates the Independence from Colombia with big parades in Panama City, there are traditional folklore dancing in the streets, where both children and adults dress in traditional costumes, wearing a pollera and a montuno, and dance El Tamborito or El Atravesao, traditional dances. The tradition is mainly kept by schools who prepare themselves to parade on the streets all year long. Parents spend a lot of money instruments and uniforms for those in a marching band.