John Morgan Empey
John Morgan Empey was born at Putnam, Ontario, on the sixteenth day of April, 1874. His early education qualified him as a school teacher and he followed this profession for five years. Then he entered the School of Practical Science at Toronto, from which he graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Applied Science in both Mining and Civil Engineering in 1902.
His first assignment was with the Dominion Steel Co. at Glace Bay, Nova Scotia, as engineer and surveyor in the coal mines there. Returning to Ontario, he obtained his commission as an Ontario Land Surveyor on 16th February, 1907, and joined the staff of the Department of the Interior at Ottawa. In 1909, he went to Calgary, qualified as an Alberta Land Surveyor, and was appointed district engineer and surveyor for the Alberta Government. He remained in that position until 1917, when he again returned to Ontario.
His first work there was with the Ontario Highway Department as District Engineer, being stationed at various points in Ontario, and at St. Marys for about six years. About 1926, he took up permanent residence in Mitchell and was appointed county engineer and road supervisor for the County of Perth, which position he filled acceptably for about thirteen years.
In the Masonic order, he stood very high, being at the time of his death Grand First Principal of the Royal Arch Masons, after having occupied many of the higher positions in the Order, including 32nd Scottish Rite.
He died on 21st May, 1942; in his 69th year, at the home of his sister in Ingersoll, and was buried with Masonic honours in Woodland Cemetery, Mitchell. His wife predeceased him by a few years, and no children survived.
Source: Association of Ontario Land Surveyors