Lachlan Gilchrist

(1875-1962) Assistant Professor of Physics at the University of Toronto; Society President (1934-35).

LACHLAN GILCHRIST (1875-1962) Was the son of a pioneer family in Ontario's Bruce County. He attended Owen Sound Collegiate and the University of Toronto where he was a scholarship winner in mathematics and physics. Following graduation in 1904, he went to Chicago for his M.A. and Ph.D. under Millikan and Michelson. Further graduate studies took him to Berlin, Cambridge and Oxford, and during the War he was in charge of X-ray work at the military hospital in Orpington, England. Gilchrist had been appointed Assistant Professor of Physics at the University of Toronto just before enlisting and returned to this position in 1919. He established geophysics at U of T and in the course of his career worked with the Geological Survey of Canada and was a consultant for British, American and Canadian governments, for Ontario Hydro and for Ontario and Quebec mining associations. He never married and lived in Victoria College's North House where he was a Don for many years. He was very popular because of his personality, his connections (W.L.M. King was one of his life-long friends), and his athletic prowess.

In spite of his active life and varied interests, Gilchrist found time for RASC affairs. Between 1909 and 1949, eight of his papers appeared in the Journal, indicative of a long-term attachment to the Society. He spoke to Toronto, Ottawa and London Centres and served as Vice-President and President of the Society between 1932 and 1935. Following this, he was on Toronto Centre Council for ten years.

Peter Broughton (from Looking Up)

Further Reading

Gilchrist, Lachlan