A Look Back at Jane's Amazing Story

Wednesday, June 9, 2010 - 1:59pm

On July 14, 2010, it will be 50 years to the day that Jane Goodall first stepped out of a game warden’s boat onto the pebbly beach at the Gombe Chimpanzee Reserve in what is today Tanzania. At the time, she expected to be in the forest observing wild chimpanzees for 3 or 4 months. In fact, she was embarking on a wildlife immersion experience that would alter our understanding of what it means to be human, and she would become a hero to young people, conservationists and others all around the world.

In light of this momentous anniversary, we are dedicating the Gombe Chimpanzee Blog over the next few months to Jane's amazing story. We’ll relive high points of the ongoing 50-year study at Gombe. We’ll present young Jane’s writings (many of which she did by the glow of a  lantern late at night outside her tent, after a long day of watching and following chimps). We’ll also present historic photos, chimp life stories, significant research findings, and more.

If you plan to follow our blog and want some supplementary reading, we recommend you start with Jane’s classic books: In the Shadow of Man and Through a Window. They should be at your neighborhood libraries (and we have them for sale in our store, with proceeds going to support our work).

Above: In the early days Jane found a good vantage point for viewing the chimpanzees -- today it's called simply "The Peak" or "Jane's Peak."




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