Dogs of the Railways

Canine Guardians, Companions and Mascots Since the 19th Century


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SKU: 9781476682587 Categories: , , ,
Imprint or Series:Dogs in Our World

About the Book

This is the story of the vagabond canines that hopped on railroads across the United States, often becoming celebrities and national heroes. Chapters introduce canines like Owney, guardian of the railway mail service; Fala, FDR’s beloved dog and train-companion; Annie, the Colorado railway ambassador; the K9 patrols who watch over the tracks; and many more.
As railroads were changing America, these raildogs were changing the people who lived and worked in rail communities. For the dogs of the railways, home became the hearts of the people of the railroad. More than the dogs themselves, this book is about the human–animal relationship between a dog and a community and moments in history where that relationship symbolized the quest for home and belonging, a search that humans often share with our canine travelers.

About the Author(s)

Jill Lenk Schilp is a retired health care professional, animal advocate, and humane educator. Her work has appeared in books, journals, magazines and blogs. A member of the Dog Writers Association of America, she lives in Richardson, Texas.

Bibliographic Details

Jill Lenk Schilp. Series Editor Brian Patrick Duggan
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 161
Bibliographic Info: 10 photos, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2024
pISBN: 978-1-4766-8258-7
eISBN: 978-1-4766-5126-2
Imprint: McFarland
Series: Dogs in Our World

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments ix

Preface 1

Introduction 5

 1. Owney: Guardian of the Railway Mail Service, 1888–1897 9

 2. The Railroad Jacks: Hoboes, Travelers, and Philanthropists, Mid–1880s–1931 22

 3. Roxey: The Long Island Railroad Commuter, 1904–1914 33

 4. Sheba’s Bob: Dog Detective of the Long Island Railroad, 1906–1916 45

 5. Annie: The Colorado Southern Railway Ambassador of Kindness, 1934–1948 53

 6. Shep: Faithfulness on the Great Northern Railroad, 1931–1942 60

 7. Fala: A Raildog Rides the Funeral Train, 1945 68

 8. Brownie: The Victorville, California, Railroad Station Mascot, 1943–1945 83

 9. Railroad K9 Patrols: Guardians of the Railways, 2022 88

10. Companion Pets Hop on Board, 2015 and Beyond 103

11. International Raildogs, 1953–2016 110

12. Raildogs: Finding the Way Home 119

Appendix: Monuments and Memorials to Raildogs 127

Chapter Notes 129

Bibliography 137

Index 149