The mystery of Lake Anjikuni: where did the whole population of the village go?

In the year of 1930 an appalling thing occurred with the local Inuit people of a little village near the Lake Anjikuni. All of the 35-40 (some sources say more people) inhabitants of the settlement disappeared without any trace, even the dead from their graves.

Eskimo girl

Source: / Ashtyn Renee: Enielle the Eskimo; modified: Richárd Seres-Nagy; License: CC BY 2.0; License link:; Link:

The case has been reported to the local authorities by a trapper named Joe Labelle, who originally wanted to request for a night shelter from the ever-friendly Inuit Eskimos, who were living there. However, when he arrived into the village, he found no one there.

The shocking circumstances of the case

When Labelle arrived into the village he was shocked to discover that everything was left untouched, including the food, drinks, and fireplaces, which were still smouldering in some cottages. The homes, weapons and also the clothes were left as if everybody just ran out from the cottages within a few seconds. The investigating Royal Canadian Mounted Police discovered other strange things as well, such as the lack of any footprints, blood, any signs of preparing or fighting. One of the strangest things that they found is that there were seven dead sled dogs 100 meters away from the village.

The dogs died of starvation despite the food warehouses of the settlement and the houses were very close to them and they were opened. But the most shocking fact they discovered was that the dead have disappeared from the seemingly untouched graves, without the apex stones being moved from them.

Eyewitnesses and other oddities

Some people, who were living near to the village, after the strange case, reported there was a unique light phenomenon above the Lake Anjikuni in the presumed time of the disappearances. The first man, who reported about the strange thing to Pierre Menard cavalry police commander, was a fur-hunter, Armand Laurent, who had temporarily camped with his two sons near the village, and toured that area.

The trapper declared he had seen a strange light phenomenon several times with his sons in the days before the event that changed its colour while circling irregularly and then suddenly set off and disappeared towards Lake Anjikuni. Although Laurent crossed the snow fields of the Arctic since he learned to walk, some people thought then and think nowadays, too, that he just saw the Polar Lights on the sky at those nights.

Theories, explanations

Some scientists think so the mystery was only a simple migration, which took place under strange and unusual circumstances. This theory is interesting because it is hard to imagine with a common sense why an Eskimo tribe with millennial experience in the Arctic life just made this decision without any particular antecedent. In this way they started to wander across the infinite snow fields without any weapons, warm clothes, reserved food, sleds, canoes and dogs, carrying with them the corpses of their ancestors, which were just dug out from their eternal rest.

People with a spiritual mindset understandably believe that aliens are behind the case, due the unexplained circumstances of disappearance and the reports of the local people such as Laurent. Although no evidence of this theory has been found over the past 80 years, it is true that none of the other theories explain what happened in the phantom village that night.

Finally the third group of people who are interested in this case think that the whole thing was only a hoax. Maybe it was just a kind of urban legend, which was created by a journalist, Emett E. Kelleher, who was inspired by the mysterious disappearance of some people and a dead body missing from its grave.

Whatever the truth might be, since the villagers have never been found and no one can explain even today where they may have gone, the mystery of the Lake Anjikuni seems to be an eternal secret.

Donát Novák

April 2020