Who Killed Tom Thomson? - The Truth about the Murder of One of the 20th Century's Most Famous Artists
Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing
A new look at a notoriously mysterious 1917 death in the Canadian wilderness—informed by two generations of researchers and modern-day homicide detectives.
Before he met an untimely death in a remote wilderness lake in July 1917, Tom Thomson was a landscape painter considered Canada’s Vincent van Gogh. He was buried in an unofficial grave close to the lake where his body was found, and about eight hours later the coroner arrived—but never examined the body, and ruled the death accidental due to drowning. A day and a half later, Thomson’s family hired an undertaker to exhume the body and move it to the family plot about a hundred miles away. This undertaker refused all help, and to the puzzlement of many, worked only at night, despite the mosquitoes and blackflies that swarmed in the summer.
In 1956, Bill Little and three other men, influenced by the story of an old park ranger, dug up what was supposed to be the original, now-empty grave. To their surprise, the grave still contained a body, and the skull revealed a head wound that matched the initial reports of those who’d pulled Thomson’s corpse from the water. The revelations that followed sent shockwaves across the nation and began a mystery that continues to this day. In this book, his son, John Little, continues the relationship his family has had with Tom Thomson and his fate—by teaming up with two high-ranking Ontario provincial police homicide detectives. For the first time, they provide a forensic scientific opinion as to how Thomson met his death, and where his body is buried. Drawing upon his father's research, plus recently released archival material and his own thirty-year investigation, Little and his colleagues prove that Thomson was murdered, and set forth two persons of interest in this fascinating, twist-filled historical crime.
“A novel approach . . . he has done an admirable job of assembling the actual evidence, the hearsay evidence and all the various theories, from solid to ridiculous, concerning the death of Tom Thomson.” —The Globe and Mail
Available since: 08/21/2018.
Print length: 439 pages.