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Railway Jack: The True Story of an Amazing Baboon
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Railway Jack: The True Story of an Amazing Baboon

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4.63  ·  Rating details ·  16 ratings  ·  14 reviews
Jim was a South African railway inspector in the late 1800s who lost his legs in an accident while at work. Unable to perform all his tasks with his disability but desperate to keep his job, Jim discovered a brilliant solution, a baboon named Jack. Jim trained Jack to help him both at home and at the depot. But when the railway authorities and the public discovered a monke ...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Expected publication: February 1st 2020 by Capstone Editions
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La Coccinelle
What an interesting story! I'd never heard of Jack the baboon or his friend, Jim Wide. I'm glad I got a chance to read this book and find out more about this unique pair.

Jim was a double amputee, and had trouble doing some tasks. When he had the opportunity to buy Jack, an intelligent baboon, he took it, and the two became close friends. Jack started out helping Jim with various tasks in the man's life, but proved to be so intelligent that he was eventually able to be employed by the
...more
Morris
This is my new favorite non-fiction book for middle graders. It's heavily illustrated in a beautiful way that accentuates the very true story of Railway Jack the baboon. I have to admit, I thought some liberties were taken with the story due to how incredible it is, but the author spent a large amount of time researching and cites his sources. Speaking of which, this is an excellent introduction as to how to do exactly that for children on the cusp of writing papers. It also covers the history o ...more
Carla Johnson-Hicks
Another great true story about a person who does everything he can to overcome obstacles and situations that could change his life forever. When Jim lost his legs to an accident in the railyard where he worked, he didn't want to lose his job. Desperate to keep working, he had to come up with a solution and he did. He trained a baboon named Jack to do some of the jobs on command. When the railway officials found out about Jack, they almost took Jim's job away, but Jack and Jim worked together to ...more
Laura
This is the true story of Jim Wide who lost his lower legs in an industrial train accident. However, he still needed to earn a living, and so begged to be able to work. He got a job as a signal man, working the switches, and comes across a trained baboon that he rescues to help him at his job.

He trains the baboon to help him with the switches, and the become a team.



This is the true story of Jim Wide who lost his lower legs in an industrial train accident. However, he still needed to earn a living, and so begged to be able to work. He got a job as a signal man, working the switches, and comes across a trained baboon that he rescues to help him at his job.

He trains the baboon to help him with the switches, and the become a team.







Interesting story of a very early service animal, and how loved he was. The author was amazed at what had been written about Jack, and how there is still an exhibit to him, to this day.

Thanks to Netgalley for making this book available for an honest review.
...more
Leah Horton
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Railway Jack is a true story about a baboon in South Africa who helped his human Jim as a service animal when Jim lost his legs in an accident. Jim, and Jack looked out and helped one another for years. They were inseparable.

This book showed how amazing the bonds of friendship can be between humans and animals. I found this story to be so incredible and hard to believe.

The images were adorable and the pictures at the end were just fantastic.
Katie Reilley
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you to Capstone for sharing an early copy with our #bookexpedition group!

Set in South Africa in the late 1800s, Railway Jack is a true story of a railway worker named Jim and a baboon named Jack that becomes his service animal.

Jim lost his legs in an accident at work. As a result, he was unable to fully perform the tasks assigned to him as a railway inspector. Desperate to feel useful and buy food for himself, Jim made himself wooden legs and was given a job as a signalman. One day at a
...more
Andrea Pole
Aug 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
Railway Jack by KT Johnston is the true story of a railway worker named Jim and his baboon Jack, the latter being the titular character in this charming tale of fortitude and friendship. Children of all ages will delight in the quirkiness of this true to life tale which is skillfully brought to life by beautiful illustrations, and photographs that have been generously shared by Jim's family. The story is followed by a brief section on the history of service animals over the centuries and should ...more
Faye
Sep 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Based on a true story of a train track operator in South Africa, and his remarkable friend and coworker Jack the Baboon.



This picture book tells the story of Jim and Jack's remarkable partnership and friendship working on the South African rail lines. It is an inspiring true story, about overcoming physical obstacles and the bond of friendship. This book celebrates the early days before service animals were common place.



The illustrations are colorful, realistic, and class
...more
Kathleen Guinnane
Nov 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fascinating true story of a baboon employed by a railroad in South Africa. My nephew loves trains (he's 4) and so I have heard a lot of stories from him about trains. I was happy to find this story that he didn't know that I could share with him. A railroad worker who was injured on the job had a hard time completing all his tasks after he lost his legs. He purchased a baboon that he saw helping another man and trained him to assist him. Jack (the baboon) was a quick learner and learned how to ...more
Diane
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Interesting story of a service baboon and his work on the railroad. Good story for children to understand the importance of service animals and that it is not a new phenomenon, just one that is more readily recognized.
Vonda
Oct 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: net-galley
I had never heard this story and what a super cool way to tell younger children about a piece of history. What a wonderful story about an early service animal. Thank you for sharing this story!
Lorie Barber
A unique and remarkable true story with informative backmatter, including photos of Jack and Jim.
Janet
Aug 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
What an amazing story! This book is about an amazing duo: Jim Wide, and his service baboon, Jack. Jim had lost both of his legs in a rail accident and struggled to fulfill his job at the railway until he found Jack. I was fascinated by Jim's foresight to recognize the possibility of what Jack could do to help him. I was amazed by all the skills that Jack was able to learn, and gave me a greater appreciation for baboons and service animals in general.

The author's research on the topic
...more
Steff Pasciuti
Railway Jack by KT Johnston and illustrated by César Samaniego is such an amazingly inspirational story about a disabled man and the service animal, a monkey called Jack, who changes his life. After losing both of his legs in an accident, Jim struggled to keep up with the daily requirements of his job. He soon gets Jack, a monkey to whom he teaches various aspects of his job that he now finds difficult to complete, such as pulling the levers to change the tracks. As people learn about the monkey wor ...more
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KT Johnston writes historical narrative nonfiction. KT’s interest in the past developed from a sweeping curiosity about the way things were and how history has impacted the way things are. She enjoys feeding her interests by traveling, whether she’s touring a historical site, experiencing a foreign land, or being transported by a good book. Curiosity, the magic of imagining, and the treasure of un ...more