Leg-In-Boot Square – Vancouver, British Columbia - Atlas Obscura

Leg-In-Boot Square

This mundane shopping plaza is named after a gruesome piece of flotsam. 


Looking about as innocuous as can be, Leg-In-Boot Square in Vancouver, British Columbia gets its name from a century old mystery that the police at the time dealt with in the laziest and likely the most disgusting way possible. 

As the story goes, in 1887 a full half of a human leg washed up on the shores of nearby False Creek, still wearing its boot. Baffled by the severed extremity, the constables seemingly decided that rather than pounding the pavement trying to find its owner, they would simply spear the leg on a pike and leave it outside the precinct office in case the owner came looking for it. Unsurprisingly, the lost leg was never claimed and after two weeks was assumedly thrown out or simply given to a stray dog in keeping with the police’s disinterest in expending any man hours on the project. 

The police station that once sat in the area is long since gone, and now the spot where the washed-up appendage once sat like a meaty flag is now a cobbled shopping plaza, with a giant musical anvil as a sculptural centerpiece. The leg itself remains unclaimed. 

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