Humanzee Memoir Published—Courts to Decide Who Can Profit from This Love Story


Oliver, the human-chipmanzee hybrid who died in 2012 was more intelligent than was previously thought. A recent memoir was purportedly written by Oliver during his time at the Primarily Primates sanctuary where he spent his final years.  The hand written memoir was found hidden beneath a pile of straw below the hammock he slept in.

One of Oliver’s major reveals was that even 38 years later, he still had feelings for Janet Berger, his original captor. 

“She was different than the other humans I knew.  She took the time to teach me to write, and was beginning to teach me to speak.  We loved each other.  I love here still.”

This is unusual since most reports state that at age 16, Oliver was becoming attracted to Janet and tried to mate with her so she sold him. He may not have known the truth.

Oliver was held captive, forced to perform, and subjected to laboratory testing.  He had words about his captors.

“If I ever get my hands around your throat, I may crush it, or I may let you live.  That will be my choice. Some of the humans I have encountered have been kind, some have been cruel.  If I am part human, I will choose kindness.”

It is unclear who will profit from the book.  A recent court ruling against a macaque monkey denied him the ability to copyright or profit from the distribution of his selfies. A federal judge stated that copyright law does not apply to animals. 

Oliver left a will and asked that all proceeds from his book go toward the care and freedom of Raisin, the young chimp who helped him with food and grooming during his last days. But is a Humanzee a man or an animal?  The courts will decide whether his wishes will be complied with and who exactly can profit from his writings.

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