William Bell Dawson

William Bell Dawson, surveyor, engineer, civil servant (b at Pictou, NS 2 May 1854; d at Montréal 21 May 1944). Son of Sir John William DAWSON, he studied at McGill and the École des Ponts et Chaussées, Paris, France.

Dawson, William Bell

William Bell Dawson, surveyor, engineer, civil servant (b at Pictou, NS 2 May 1854; d at Montréal 21 May 1944). Son of Sir John William DAWSON, he studied at McGill and the École des Ponts et Chaussées, Paris, France. After working several years as a surveyor and engineer, he joined the CANADIAN PACIFIC RY in 1884 and was involved in the arbitration between the Canadian government and the railway over the quality of construction of the western sections of the railway in BC. He is best known for his work as engineer and superintendent of the Tidal Survey, Canadian Department of Marine and Fisheries from 1893-1924. Technically difficult and performed under arduous conditions, the work resulted in tide tables for all the principal harbours of Canada, invaluable for the fishing, lumber and coal industries. A member of the Royal Society of Canada, in retirement Dawson devoted much time to writing articles on the relationships between religion and science.