Longboat, Tom National Historic Person

Six Nations Grand River Reserve / Oshweken, Ontario
Tom Longboat, Canadian runner, standing beside trophies © Charles A. Aylett / Library and Archives Canada | Bibliothèque et Archives Canada / C-014090Photo of Tom Longboat © Canada. Bureau des brevets et du droit d'auteur | Patent and Copyright Office, Bibliothèque et Archives Canada | Library and Archives Canada / no d'acquisition 1966-094 / e010857298Longboat, Tom © Parks Canada | Parcs Canada
Address : 1738 4th Line, Six Nations Grand River Reserve / Oshweken, Ontario

Recognition Statute: Historic Sites and Monuments Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. H-4)
Designation Date: 1976-11-06
Life Date: 1886 to 1949

Other Name(s):
  • Longboat, Tom  (Designation Name)
Research Report Number: 1976-052

Importance: Famous long distance runner, won the 1907 Boston Marathon


Existing plaque:  1738 4th Line, Six Nations Grand River Reserve / Ohsweken, Ontario

This Onondaga athlete, born on the Six Nations reserve of the Grand River Iroquois, became the foremost long distance runner of his time. He followed the ancient Iroquois tradition of running, winning many races in Canada and abroad, including the Boston Marathon of 1907. He also participated in the Olympics of 1908. Competing when professional foot races were a popular attraction, he was one of the first Canadian athletes to make a living solely from sports. Retiring from competitive racing before the First World War, he later served as a despatch carrier in that conflict. He died on this reserve.