COLUMBIA — This isn’t the first time a monkey has made headlines in Columbia. A story about a monkey on the loose made the Missourian’s front page on three days in May and June 1943. The following is a timeline culled from those reports:
A 20-inch female monkey made its great escape from MU.
“The animal escaped Monday, jumping from her pen and through a glass window in the animal house used in connection with the anatomy department of the MU School of Medicine.”
After scurrying across campus, the monkey took refuge in the high trees of Elm Street.
After three days on the run, the renegade monkey finally descended from the trees. James Rogers, a janitor at MU’s School of Journalism, tried to capture the monkey but was unsuccessful. The monkey relied on its foolproof plan “by jumping through a window (of Neff Hall) into the steam room. Steam pipes run up to Jesse Hall and across to the white campus — the monkey is in the maze of pipes.”
“Dr. M. D. Overholser, anatomy department head, said this morning that the buildings and grounds department of the university might capture the elusive monkey today when employees make their weekly inspection of steam heating tunnels.”
But for the fifth consecutive day, the simian sneak laughed in the face of authority and eluded capture.
Following a second unsuccessful attempt to scan the tunnels for the monkey, the search was called off.
“J. O. Roberts, technician in the anatomy department, searched vainly the tree tops this morning, hoping the monkey might have returned to its earlier habitat.”
To this day, the monkey’s whereabouts are unknown.