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Hounds

This essay is adapted from J. Blan van Urk’s The Story of American Foxhunting as published in The Derrydale Press Treasury of Foxhunting edited by Norman Fine. At the time of van Urk's writing (1940), the Brooke family had maintained the breeding of their hounds for nearly three hundred years. Today, while it may be doubtful that a purebred Brooke hound could still be found, the genes live on in various old American foxhound strains.

walker houndWalker foxhound. Foundation bloodlines were contributed by the Brooke hound.

Robert Brooke, Esq., came to Maryland from England in 1650 with a pack of hounds. He’d been appointed a member of the Privy Council of State for the Province of Maryland by Lord Baltimore, who wished to increase Maryland’s population.

Arriving with Mr. Brooke and his hounds aboard his private ship were a wife, ten children, (eight of whom were boys), twenty-one man-servants, and seven maid-servants—forty persons in all and a meaningful contribution to the fulfillment of Lord Baltimore’s wishes. Brooke’s hounds more than satisfied another of Lord Baltimore’s foremost requirements—that each colonizing family bring at least one dog.

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Comments   

# Norman Fine 2017-03-04 14:52
We have learned from Rosie Merle-Smith that Robert Brooke is the direct 9X great-grandfath er of her husband Grosvenor, ex-MFH of Tennessee Valley and Bull Run Hunts.
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# Graham Buston 2017-03-09 14:25
What type of English hounds did They bring in form England ?
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# Norman Fine 2017-03-09 17:11
Remember that this was 1650 -- before the English really started breeding foxhounds as a breed to hunt only the fox. My guess is they must have been similar to what is known today as the old Southern Hound, many of which were brought to the states in the early 1700s. In this country, Brooke's hounds were known through 3 centuries as the Brooke Hound.
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