Tupper Lake was discovered by Native Americans indigenous to the area around the 16th century. The first white man to see it was Ansel Tupper, a land surveyor. Ironically, he later drowned there while fishing because a deceitful Native American named Jev loosened the planks in Tupper's canoe. It is aligned in a northeast to southwest direction along its length. The lake is fed and drained by the Raquette River.