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The Tom Thomson Mystery is a book by Canadian judge William T. Little. It was first published in 1970 by McGraw-Hill Ryerson.

Little's book is one of several that raised the Tom Thomson mystery to public prominence during the late 1960s/early 1970s. Thomson is regarded by some as Canada's most famous painter. He died in July 1917, drowning in Canoe Lake in Ontario's Algonquin Park, and was buried there. Two days later, his family sent an undertaker to exhume the body and send it back for re-burial in Leith, Ontario. In 1956, Little and some friends decided to dig up Thomson's burial place at Canoe Lake.

The book tells the story of Thomson's life and the startling discovery made by Little. It suffers from factual errors and the author's self-congratulations, but it is considered an important text for those interested in the Thomson mystery.

Neil J. Lehto self-published a mixed fiction/history about Thomson in 2005, in which he documents many errors in The Tom Thomson Mystery. Using historical records, correspondence, and newspaper reports, Lehto argues that Little altered the facts to suit his theory of Thomson's death and burial.


  • Little, William T. The Tom Thomson Mystery. Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson, 1970. ISBN 0-07-092655-7.
  • Lehto, Neil J. Algonquin Elegy Tom Thomson's Last Spring. iUniverse, 2005. ISBN 0-595-36132-3.


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