Images from the Sydney B. Williamson Papers. Williamson was born on April 15, 1865 in Lexington, Virginia, the son of VMI Professor Thomas H. Williamson. He was graduated from the Virginia Military Institute in 1884 and shortly thereafter began a distinguished career in Civil Engineering. Most notably, he served as Division Engineer of the Pacific Division of Panama Canal from 1907-1914. Williamson was responsible for wet and dry excavation of the Pedro Miguel and Miraflores locks; he also helped design and oversaw construction of the Pacific Terminal docks; and the water supply, sewers, roads and streets for the towns of the division including the city of Panama.