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  • Albert Johnson started the largest manhunt in Canadian History. This manhunt lasted 48 days in extremely harsh climate and it is truly amazing that Johnson survived for as long as he did. Johnson escaped the Mounties and their posse many times and it is still a mystery of who Johnson really was.   They don’t know where he was from either, but, he arrived in Fort McPherson on July 9th, 1931. He was about 35 years old, with blue eyes, and a stocky build. Johnson built an 8’x10’ cabin in a trapping site on the Rat River. He set up 2 sticks in the sand, (about 90 cm tall) and with 2 pistols, he shot 1 inch off of each stick. He then crossed his arms and did the same thing. There were witnesses of this, and in a while, many people knew about his accuracy.
  • THE HUNT FOR THE MAD TRAPPER
  • On January 4th, 1932 a posse of 9 men, 42 dogs with 18 kg of dynamite, journeyed to Johnson’s cabin to bring him in. The posse started to throw sticks of dynamite, trying to dislodge the roof or door. They were ineffective. With the temperature dropping, something would have to be done. Eventually, Knut Lang threw a good amount dynamite onto the roof, blowing a hole and knocking off the smoke stack. Knut launched himself into the door, but, for some reason, he froze in his place and failed to shoot Johnson. At about 3:00 a.m. January 10, 1932, Inspector Eames decided to bound up the rest of the  dynamite as a last resort. The blast from the bundle ripped the roof off and caved in its sides. Eames then decided to return to Aklavik. On Jan 14, 1932, Constable Millen and Karl Garlund went back to Rat River to find that Johnson had survived the blast and escaped.
  • THE HUNT FOR THE MAD TRAPPER
  • cabin
  • The largest manhunt in Canadian History started  when Albert’s neighbours had someone disrupting their traps.  On December 31, 1932, constable Alfred King and Special Constable Joe Bernard decided to investigate. When they got there, they found smoke coming from the chimney showing that Johnson was inside.  He wasn’t answering, and it was 40 below zero, so they went back for reinforcements. They returned for Johnson with two more Mounties and one civilian. After one knock on the door, Johnson shot, and wounded constable King through the door.  After a 20 hour ride back to Aklavik, the life of the constable was saved.
  • THE HUNT FOR THE MAD TRAPPER
  • cabin
  • cabin
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