Information on working terriers, dogs, natural history, hunting, and the environment, with occasional political commentary as I see fit. This web log is associated with the Terrierman.com web site.
Jefferson accepted two shipments of french sheepdogs from Lafayette. No info which breed (if any). Might have been similar to the modern Briard. They were fairly useful dogs and Jefferson, the tireless agricultural improver, sent pups to planter friends to help with large flocks of Merino's (also Jefferson imported). Jefferson's dogs may play some part in the ancestry of the modern English Shepherd.Interesting to think what would have happened if Jefferson hadn't been such an ardent francophile. Collies would have come to the US decades before they actually did.Donald McCaig
I wonder to what extent Jefferson's love of France was due to the fact that they were funding the Revolution, while the British were killing our boys? I supposes it was hard to celebrate anything British back then. We switched from tea to coffee for that reason, I believe.A similar "nation displacement" with dogs occured back in WWI, when suddenly German Shepherds were being called "Alsatians" because no one could sell or celebrate a dog with "German" in its name. In fact, thanks to WWII, the name was not officially changed back in the UK until the mid 1970s. P
I did not know that German Shepards had a different name for a while. It makes sense that it would have been a problem after both WW1 and WW2. What does Alsatian refer to? Or is it just made up?
Alsace is a small section of France right along the German border, and it has been kicked back and forth between the two countries for a long time, even switching dominant language at times. It is generally paired with Lorraine (i.e. Alsace-Lorriane) to decribe similar historical area adjcent to it. The term Alsatian for German Shepherds might have been coined when Rin Tin Tin was capture from the Germans in a Kennel in Lorraine. Yes, that's right -- the most famous movie dog in the world is a spoil of war!P.
The dogs Lafayette sent to George Washington were 7 Grande Bleu de Gascognes."General George Washington was said to have written in his diary that in the first year, one of the Gascony Bitches gave birth to 15 pure bred pups. He was also said to have remarked that their voices were as melodious as the bells of Moscow. More Gasconies were imported to America in the 1800s and these were used in the background of most of the modern day Coon Hounds."Leslie FournierThe Uncommon Houndwww.uncommonhound.com
Post a Comment