MUCH TRAVELLED DOG.
Few people who travel on the London, Brighton, and South Coast Railway know what a distinguished character has a free pass on every branch of the line, of which for several,years he has taken daily advantage (says the Illustralted Sporting and Dramatic News). It is between two and three years ago that a fox-terrier, big in bone, and not over well-bred, jumped into a train that was leaving Brighton for Horsham, and settled himself in the guard's carriage. Little notice was taken of him at first, but after a time he began to be a person of great interest. No one knew where he came from or to whom he belonged but every day he was ready for an early start in an early train. Sometimes he went to Portsmouth, sometimes to Horsham, sometimes only to nearer stations but the most remarkable part of his arrangements was that he always got to Brighton in time to go by the last train to Lewes, where he always slept, leaving again by the first train in the morning. When the friend from whom I first heard this story (and who vouches for the truth of it) last heard of Jack he still continued this practice, and always spent the night at Lewes Station. About a year and a half ago the London, Brighton, and South Coast Company began to look upon him as one of their regular servants, and presented him with a collar bearing this inscription, Jack-London, B. and S. Coast Railway Company." My friend told me that on one occasion, some months ago, he traced Jack's movements on one especial day, and probably it was a good sample of many another. He arrived from Brighton by a train reaching Steyning at 10.50; there he got out for a minute, but went on by the same train to Henfield. Here he left the [train and went to a publichouse not far from the station, where a biscuit was given to him; and, after a little walk, took a later train to West Grinstead. where he spent the afternoon, returning to Brighton in time for the last train to Lewes. He was rather fond of the Portsmouth line, but never, I believe, has come so far as London. He generally takes his place on or by the guard's wheel, and sits looking out of the window; It would be very interesting to know in what the fascination of this perpetual railway travelling consists. It certainly shows an immense amount of instinct and observa- tion, and the regularity and punctuality of Jack's daily life are a lesson to many a two-legged traveller. Whether he considers himself sub guard, or director, or general overseer, no one can tell, but there is, it seems, an idea of duty in his movements; what he has to do (or thinks he has to do) he does faithfully, and so far is a telling example to his fellow travellers on the London, Brighton, and South Coast Railway.
Aberystwyth Observer 4/6/1881