We have changed our privacy policy. In addition, we use cookies on our website for various purposes. By continuing on our website, you consent to our use of cookies. You can learn about our practices by reading our privacy policy.
© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County

The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County


by Mark Twain

Jim Smiley Timeline and Summary

  • Smiley bets on everything, including whether the parson’s wife will get well after being sick.
  • He has an old mare that doesn’t look like much but always manages to win on the home stretch of a race.
  • He has a lazy dog he names Andrew Jackson. The dog wins fights by grabbing onto the other dog’s back leg and holding on until the other dog quits. One day, he fights a dog that has no back legs. When he realizes he’s lost, Andrew Jackson limps off and dies.
  • Smiley catches a frog and starts to educate it. For three months, he does nothing but train it. When he knows he has a frog that can beat any other frog, he starts betting. He names the frog Dan’l Webster.
  • Smiley bets a stranger that his frog can beat any other frog. The stranger takes the challenge, so Smiley goes off and catches a frog in the marsh for the stranger.
  • When Dan’l Webster loses the jumping contest, Smiley is puzzled until he picks Dan’l up and the frog burps up some quail shot. Then he realizes he’s been cheated.
  • Smiley runs after the stranger but fails to catch him.
  • Apparently, Smiley also had a yellow, one-eyed cow without a tail – but we never get to hear about that cow because the story ends.