Biographical Dictionary of Canadian Engineers

Edited by
Rod Millard

GILPIN, Edwin , b. 28 October 1850, Halifax, Nova Scotia; d. 10 July 1907, Halifax, Nova Scotia. Son of an Anglican clergyman, he studied mining, geology, and chemistry at King's College, Windsor, graduating with a BA (1871) and an MA in 1873. He was apprenticed the same year at the Albion Mines, Pictou, NS. As an instructor at the Halifax Technological Institute, (1878-80) and a lecturer at the School of Mining and Metallurgy, Dalhousie University, NS, he maintained a commitment to technical training. Appointed Inspector of Mines in 1879, and Deputy Commissioner of Public Works and Mines from 1886 to 1906, he improved mine safety following the 12 February 1891 Springhill mines explosion. He lobbied the NS government to restrict the use of gunpowder in dangerous mines, thereby setting a precedent in international mine legislation. A leading member of the NS Institute of Natural Science, he wrote 26 papers on mineralogy and geology. In 1874, he was elected a fellow of the Geological Society of London, and was also a member of the North of England Institute of Mining Engineers. He was a founding member of the Royal Society of Canada (1882) and the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers (1887), and was a lifelong member of the Church of England.

Trevor A. Corless