Shocking stories tell tale of London Zoo’s founding | Science News

ADVERTISEMENT

MISSION CRITICAL

Support credible science journalism.

Subscribe to Science News today.


Reviews & Previews

Shocking stories tell tale of London Zoo’s founding

Institution’s early days marred by animal misery

By
7:00am, March 20, 2017
Gardens of the Zoological Society of London

THE ZOO  In 1835, the Gardens of the Zoological Society of London housed an assortment of exotic animals, many of which struggled to survive.

The Zoo
Isobel Charman
Pegasus
$27.95

When Tommy the chimpanzee first came to London’s zoo in the fall of 1835, he was dressed in an old white shirt.

Keepers gave him a new frock and a sailor hat and set him up in a cozy spot in the kitchen to weather the winter. Visitors flocked to get a look at the little ape roaming around the keepers’ lodge, curled up in the cook’s lap or tugging on her skirt like a toddler. Tommy was a hit — the zoo’s latest star.

Six months later, he was dead.

Tommy’s sorrowful story comes near the middle of Isobel Charman’s latest book, The Zoo, a tale of the founding of the Gardens of the Zoological Society of London, known today as the

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join the Society today or Log in.

Get Science News headlines by e-mail.

More from this issue of Science News

From the Nature Index Paid Content