Disappearance

No one can be certain what happened on Sunday, July 8th, 1917, the day that Tom Thomson disappeared. Some eyewitnesses saw Thomson that morning, but many are convinced he met his end the night before.

What is known, is that Tom Thomson’s body surfaced 8 days later and was sighted by a vacationer on the lake who happened to be a doctor. He examined the body and believed Thomson had simply had a mishap in his canoe. Others on the lake felt it was no accident.

What do you think?

Here are the stories of what may have happened:

1. Accidental Drowning:

  • Dr. G. W. Howland, Toronto July 17, 1917 
(examined body before burial at Canoe Lake)
  • Mark Robinson to Blodwen Davies, 1930

2. Manslaughter:

  • Daphne Crombie to Ron Pittaway, 1977
  • George Thomson to Blodwen Davies, June 8, 1931
  • Mark Robinson to biographer Blodwen Davies, 1930.
  • Mark Robinson to Blodwen Davies, 1930

3. Subdural Hemotoma:

  • Dr. Noble Sharpe, “The Canoe Lake Mystery”, Canadian Society of Forensic Science Journal, June 1970, 34-40
    Murder With A Paddle:
  • Dr. Harry Ebbs, Ahmek Camp on Canoe Lake, interviewed Nov. 26, 1975 with Rory MacKay
  • Mark Robinson journal entry, July 10, 1917
  • Mark Robinson to Blodwen Davies, 1930.

4. Murder with a Gun:

  • Charles F. Plewman, “Reflections on The Passing of Tom Thomson”, Canadian Camping Magazine, 1972
  • Dr. Noble Sharpe, “The Canoe Lake Mystery”, Canadian Society of Forensic Science Journal, June 1970, 34-40

5. Suicide:

  • Charles F. Plewman, “Reflections on The Passing of Tom Thomson”, Canadian Camping Magazine, 1972