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Owney the Traveling Dog

This page last updated 9/4/03

Owney is on the move!

Click here to see the most recent adventures of Owney!

Students learn about the United States by mailing Owney the Traveling Dog and receiving postcards from other schools.

An explanation of the project

The project started in 1996 when my class read Owney the Traveling Dog, by Lynn Hall (1977) in our literature text. This story is about a real puppy that was found in Albany, NY in 1888. The puppy was adopted by postal workers, and it lived at the post office. They named him Owney and gave him a mail sack to sleep on. One day, Owney's sack-bed was needed for the mail. Owney followed the scent when the sack was put on a train. Owney got on the train and traveled to the next station where he was found and returned to Albany. Well, that dog must have liked traveling because he continued to get on trains and traveled all over the US.
When Owney died, his body was preserved and is on display at the National Postal Museum.

I recently received news of another book about Owney, "Any Friend of Owney's." Unfortunately this book is also out of print, but the author's son has a web site with the book online. Click here to go to his web site.

The current project involves a teacher and class from each state who hosts a stuffed dog we also name Owney, as he travels around the US by mail. Each class writes facts about their state on postcards and mails them to the other classes to let them know Owney arrived. The class will also send me a paragraph or two by e-mail to be added to Owney's journal. Project ideas and lesson extensions are available, but nothing more is required.

Owney will only have time to visit one class in each state and can only visit for one day at the most. If the time in a class plus travel time took just 7 days, Owney would take a year to make it around the US! He needs to hurry to finish his trip before classes let out for the summer. When Owney traveled to all 50 states, starting in the fall of 1998, he finished his trip to the 50th state in the fall of 1999. He was sent to the president and the president wrote us a letter.

Can Owney visit all fifty states and see the president in one school year?

The Basics

1. Collect 49 postcards for the other participating classes and prepare to mail them.
2. Get ready to have Owney visit your class.
3. Mail Owney to the next class the same day or the next day after you receive him.
4. Mail the postcards as soon as possible.
5. Send a paragraph or two to Bev Adams to be forwarded to the other teachers and also posted in the journal.

Owney's 03/04 Itinerary and Journal

03/04 Journal
Page 1

1 Due in Kea'au, HI 8/18/03, arrived 8/18/03
2 Due in Cottonwood, AZ 8/22/04, arrived 8/25/03
3 Due in El Paso, TX 8/27/03, arrived 9/2/0
4 Due in Cape Girardeau, MO 9/2/03
5 Due in Charleston, SC 9/8/03
6 Due in Christiansburg, VA 9/12/03
7 Due in Oak Hill, WV 9/17/03
8 Due in Owings Mills, MD 9/22/03
9 Due in Wilmington, DE 9/26/03
10 Due in Absecon, N.J. 10/1/03
11 Due in Johnstown, PA 10/6/03
12 Due in Bronx, NY 10/10/03
13 Due in North Haven, CT 10/15/03
14 Due in Cranston, RI 10/20/03
15 Due in Marshfield, MA 10/24/03
16 Due in Derry, NH 10/29/03
17 Due in Bath, ME 11/3/03
18 Due in So. Burlington, VT 11/7/03
19 Due in Kirtland, OH 11/13/03
20 Due in Lansing, MI 11/8/03
21 Due in Connersville, IN 11/24/03
22 Due in Flanagan, IL 12/1/03
23 Due in Milton, WI 12/5/03
24 Due in Waconia, MN 12/10/03
25 Due in Beulah, ND 12/15/03
26 Due in Rapid City, SD 1/5/04
27 Due in Laramie, WY 1/9/04
28 Due in Billings, MT 1/14/04
29 Due in Idaho Falls, ID 1/20/04
30 Due in Olympia, WA 1/26/04
31 Due in Las Vegas, NV 1/30/04
32 Due in Murray, UT 2/4/04
33 Due in Edwards, CO 2/9/04
33.5 Due in Chipita Park, CO 2/13/04
34 Due in Winfield, KS 2/19/04
35 Due in Omaha, NE 2/24/04
36 Due in Cresco, IA 3/1/04
37 Due in Oklahoma City, OK 3/5/04
38 Due in Hot Springs, AR 3/10/04
39 Due in Shelbyville, TN 3/15/04
40 Due in Lexington, Ky 3/19/04
41 Due in Concord, NC 3/24/04
42 Due in ___, GA 3/29/04
43 Due in Longwood, FL 4/2/04
44 Due in Birmingham, AL 4/14/04
45 Due in Carriere, MS 4/19/04
46 Due in Luling, LA 4/23/04
47 Due in Grants, NM 4/28/04
48 Due in ___, AK 5/3/04
49 Due in Beaverton, OR 5/7/04
50 Due in Camarillo, CA 5/12/04

The last stop will be the White House, Washington D.C. 20500

Join the project.

Alaska needs a representative class for the 03/04 school year. We may also need a teacher in Georgia. If you teach in one of these states, or you know a teacher that might like to participate, please have them contact me or click here to join.

Bev Adams
Click here to visit the Camarillo Heights Elementary School website.
Camarillo, CA 93010

Please disregard any ads below this point.

Sign up for the project
Owney the Traveling Dog, by Lynn Hall
What to do when you get news from Owney
What to do when Owney visits your school
Lesson Extensions
Products you may want to use with this project
Related Traveling Dogs
See a picture of our Owney the Traveling Dog
Find out how this project got started
Notes and pictures from visits to the Smithsonian Postal Museum
Owney's 98/99 Itinerary and Journal
Owney's 99/00 Itinerary and Journal
Owney's 00/01 Itinerary and Journal
Owney's 01/02 Itinerary and Journal
Owney's 02/03 Itinerary and Journal
Owney's 03/04 Itinerary and Journal