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William Johnstone (1844-1879)

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William Johnstone (1844-1879)

1880 Obituary [1]

MR. WILLIAM JOHNSTONE was born at Bombay in September, 1844; but at an early age he was removed to Glasgow, where his scholastic training was pursued.

Having displayed a liking for engineering, at the age of fifteen he became a pupil of Mr. Hugh H. Maclure, Civil Engineer and Architect.

He then entered the office of Mr. William Johnstone, M.Inst.C.E., Engineer of the Glasgow and South-Western railway, under whom he was engaged for part of the three years of his servitude on the construction of branch lines for the company.

During the session 1864-65 he attended the late Professor Rankine’s class for Civil Engineering and Mechanics in Glasgow University, and afterwards until October 1867, he was an assistant to Mr. Ronald Johnstone, Civil and Mining Engineer, principally occupied in office work.

Mr. Johnstone was for the next three years in the service of the Great Indian Peninsula Railway Company, as a third-class Resident Engineer, and was employed on construction and maintenance works between Hurda and Seonee, near Egutpoora, at Shapoor, at Massawud and Myjee, and at Munmar.

In October 1870 he obtained an appointment in the railway branch of the Public Works Department of the Government of India, and until March 1874, was engaged under Mr. Horace Bell, M. Inst. C.E., on the survey and construction of the first division of the Holkar State railway.

After three months’ privilege leave spent in England, on returning to India he was placed in sub-divisional charge of the Oojeen branch of the Neemuch State railway. His exertions in mitigating the sufferings of the famine-stricken population, added to his professional duties, proved too much for his strength; and in May 1878, he obtained leave of absence for eighteen months, but his constitution had been irretrievably injured, and he died of diabetes in April 1879.

At the time of his death Mr. Johnstone had been on the roll of the Institution for three years, and had held the rank of Assistant Engineer of the first grade in the Public Works Department of India for seven years.

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