William Cormack is celebrated for his 58-day walk across the unmapped, unexplored interior of the island of Newfoundland in 1822. He is also remembered for his work with the Beothuk, the Indigenous people of Newfoundland—including his attempts to prevent their extinction. The information he obtained from the Beothuk woman Shanawdithit, the last known member of her people, is critical to our understanding of Beothuk history and culture.
Although Cormack is a central figure in Newfoundland’s history, he remains an enigma. Little is known of Cormack’s life, his entrepreneurial endeavors, his global roaming and his death in British Columbia. The William Cormack Story changes that. Thorough extensive research, including close reading of Cormack’s diaries and publications, Ingeborg Marshall sheds lights on the life and contributions of a fascinating and pioneering spirit.