The Story of Doctor Dolittle, Being the History of His Peculiar Life at Home and Astonishing Adventures in Foreign Parts is the first of his Doctor Dolittle series of children's novels about a man who learns to talk to animals and becomes their champion around the world. Hugh John Lofting was a British author who created the character of Doctor Dolittle - one of the classics of children's literature. His early education was at Mount St Mary's College in Sheffield, after which he went to the United States, completing a degree in civil engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He enlisted in the Irish Guards to serve in World War I. Not wishing to write to his children of the brutality of the war, he wrote imaginative letters that were the foundation of the Doctor Dolittle novels.