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Norman Duncan, ca. 1890-1895
Norman Duncan, a student friend of King, became a successful journalist and writer of short stories, novels and travel pieces. This photograph of Norman Duncan, Mackenzie King, Henry Burbidge and Wilfred Campbell (clockwise from front left) is from King's personal collection..
Norman Duncan, a university friend of King, became a distinguished Canadian short story writer, journalist and travel writer. He worked for the New York Evening Post from 1897 to 1900. Then, as a correspondent for McClure's Magazine, he travelled to Newfoundland and Labrador, and met the famous medical missionary Sir Wilfred Grenfell. Duncan's observations in this area inspired two of his successful works of fiction, Dr. Luke of the Labrador (1904) and The Cruise of the Shining Light (1907). Altogether he published more than 20 books - short stories, novels, and travelogues - including a series for young readers. After 1900, he lived mainly in the United States.
King's diary for his university years contains many references to Duncan. Commenting on a letter received from Duncan in 1898, King wrote in his diary: "Well Dunc, and now you are on the New York Post. From no one could I be more pleased to hear than from you." (Diary, June 19, 1898)