Arthur Lawrence Morfee

“Learning never exhausts the mind”.Leonardo Da Vinci

The word “research” can seem like a daunting task when someone asks you to find out about a person, place, or thing.  Researching at a Museum can have the added pressure of what do visitors want to know.  If a person is famous, there are enormous quantities of information out there but if it is a trapper from the back country, good luck.

One of my first tasks I set myself when I started at the Museum was to find out for whom Morfee Lake, Mountain, and Creek were named after.  I have decided to introduce a character in each issue that has touched my valley by using the Golden Raven magazine.  The Museum is trying to tell the stories of people who have lived from Summit Lake to Sifton Pass.

The first character was born in London, Eng. On 27 May 1897 and immigrated to Canada around 1913, moving to London, ON.  His name was Arthur Lawrence MORFEE.  After serving Canada during WW1 he became interested in aerial photography.  One way to learn was to join the fledgling RCAF and learn not only the photography but he also became a pilot.

In the early 1930s a third aerial mapping detachment from the RCAF base at Jericho Beach in Vancouver was posted to Summit Lake with Flight Leader A. L. Morfee in charge.  He flew up the trench and area as far north as Finlay Forks.  That is who Morfee Mountain, Lake, and creek are named after.  The story does not end there. 

During the Second World War he was promoted to Air Vice Marshall and was stationed in Halifax, St. John, NFLD, and London England.  He retired to Greenwood, NS, and passed away on the 19 March 1986.

On the 29 Mar 1932 something unique happened to Fl. Ld. Morfee in Manitoba.  It is something that probably entitles him to a place in the World Book of Records.  If you think you know, phone or email me with the answer.  The rest of you will have to wait until the next issue of the Golden Raven.

Our hours are 10 am to 2 pm, Tuesday to Saturday, September to June. During July and August we are open 9am to 5pm, Tuesday to Saturday.  Our phone number is 250-997-3021 and our email address is museum@mackbc.com.  Each artifact in the Museum has a story and we want to tell the world.

This article was published in the Golden Raven magazine, Spring 2014

P.S. The answer for F/L A.L. Morfee and his “world record” is he is the first pilot in the world to have a woman passenger give birth during flight!

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