New Book Release: The Friends of Algonquin Park Announces Mowat: Little Town of Big Dreams by Mary I. Garland

ALGONQUIN PARK, ON, Dec. 1, 2015 /CNW/ - The Friends of Algonquin Park, a non-profit Canadian registered charity for those passionate about Algonquin Park is pleased to announce the publishing of Mowat: Little Town of Big Dreams by Mary I. Garland.

Algonquin Park is a world-renowned tourist destination for its nature and recreation, but few people know of the towns that once dotted Algonquin Park. In 1897, just four years after the establishment of Algonquin Park there were over 500 people living in a sawmill town on the shore of Canoe Lake in Algonquin Park. This small town site would go on to have a major influence serving as: the location for Algonquin Park's first park headquarters; home of the Gilmour and Company lumber mill, the major employer in Algonquin Park in the early 1900s; an important railway stop for the first tourists coming to Algonquin Park by train; and the summer home of Canadian artist Tom Thomson who stepped off the railway here in 1912 and was so inspired by the location it accounted for the subject of numerous paintings. Mowat was also the community that buried Tom Thomson in July 1917.

Today, time and forest regrowth has reclaimed most signs of the community of Mowat, originally named in honour of Sir Oliver Mowat, Premier of Ontario from 1872 to 1896. Only a few cottage leases, old foundations, and the Tom Thomson cairn commemorating the artist's life remain in Algonquin Park.

"Few people imagine the history of Canoe Lake as they depart on backcountry canoe trips in modern times" says Lee Pauzé, General Manager of The Friends of Algonquin Park. "This amazing book by Mary Garland is the definitive collection about the lives of the people who made Mowat their home. The history captured in Mary Garland's book is a very important resource, as these stories won't be lost as would normally happen with the passage of time."

"My small adventure of trying to better understand the disappearing Gilmour and Company mill foundations turned out to be a much larger project" says Mary Garland. "In cooperation with The Friends of Algonquin Park, I have been able to share my love of Algonquin Park's history and document the fascinating stories of Mowat and its residents for generations to come."

For more about Mowat: Little Town of Big Dreams by Mary I. Garland including images, see

About Mary I. Garland

Mary Garland was only six weeks old when she took her first Algonquin Park canoe ride. Since then Mary has had a long association with Algonquin Park spending time at a children's camp and summers at a cottage lease in Algonquin Park. Mary Garland has a PhD in mineralogy from the University of Toronto and has spent a career exploring Canada for gemological deposits. Her passion for field geology and history led her to this project to document the rich history of the community of Mowat as her first book. Mary resides in London, Ontario.

About The Friends of Algonquin Park

The Friends of Algonquin Park is a Canadian registered charity and non-profit, non-governmental organization established in 1983 for people passionate about Algonquin Park. It operates retail locations, recruits members, and fundraises to support the natural and cultural educational goals of Algonquin Park. In addition, The Friends of Algonquin Park is a book and map publisher and distributor with over 85 Algonquin Park titles in its collection. For more about The Friends of Algonquin Park, visit

SOURCE The Friends of Algonquin Park

For further information: Lee Pauzé, General Manager, The Friends of Algonquin Park, Tel: 613 637-2828 ext. 234,


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