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Railway Jack
illustration © Capstone
illustration © Capstone

a narrative nonfiction picture book
for readers ages 8+

. . . and a story for any age


Railway Jack

I like to tell little-known tales from the past; stories about special animals who profoundly impacted the lives of everyday people, and in doing so, made a mark on history—and in a way, on humanity itself.

Jack was exactly that.


courtesy of César Samaniego © Capstone
courtesy of César Samaniego
© Capstone

Well, monkey. Have I just bought myself more trouble?”

RAILWAY JACK is the true story of the remarkable partnership between a railwayman and a baboon in 1880s South Africa.

When Jim Wide lost his legs in an accident, he had to find clever ways to get around and perform his work. He obtained a very unusual, and very smart, helper: a baboon named Jack. But not everyone was happy to see a baboon at the rail yard signal hut, and Jim was fired. He pleaded with the authorities to give Jack a chance and they agreed to a test. But what about a monkey’s monkey business?? Jim and Jack’s futures lay in the hands—er, opposable thumbs—of a baboon!

RAILWAY JACK should entertain and enlighten readers of any age, and provides several topics of conversation for young people and their adults.

illustration © Capstone
illustration © Capstone

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In South Africa, JACK can be ordered through
Fogarty’s Bookshop in Port Elizabeth

average rating 4.53
out of 5

Reviews where purchased & in Goodreads greatly appreciated

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