The Last Word...

on Bill Miner and the four years he spent in Canada.  A captivating example of the historical true crime genre, this well-documented volume highlights the ordinary people of British Columbia during a formative time when the frontier was dying, and today’s modern world was emerging.  Intriguing glimpses into the operations of the Canadian Pacific Railway, the B.C. Provincial Police, the Royal North West Mounted Police and the B.C. Penitentiary bring a forgotten era to life.


Winner of the BC Historical Federation Award for Historical Writing (MAY 2007)

One hundred years after the fascinating events that shook Canada’s westernmost province took place, the real story can finally be told.  Peter Grauer has taken a snapshot in time, rich in detail and largely based on restricted and private sources never before seen or published - just four years in the first decade of the twentieth century.  The tragic facts of the guilt and innocence of two men, one a tubercular Canadian school teacher and the other a reclusive American on the run from unknown events across the border, are revealed in this book.  The wealth of detail presented by the author will enable the reader to render judgment on whether that Kamloops jury and the manipulated public opinion of 100 years ago were right or wrong.  After years of painstaking research, the story of how the mysterious Third Man was identified and how retribution finally caught up to him is told in stark detail.

This story ranges from the Valleys of the Similkameen, the Nicola and the South Thompson, from Lac la Hache in the Cariboo to long-dead Phoenix in the Boundary, and into the cities of Mission, Chilliwack and New Westminster in the Fraser Valley.

It tells the story of Constable William Fernie and his four First Nations trackers; Alex Ignace, Eli La Roux, Michel Le Camp and Philip Toma.  Together they tracked the fleeing train robbers for five days, and ensured that the Royal North West Mounted Police were able to successfully capture the bandits near Douglas Lake.

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