The ninetieth annual New England Hound Show was hosted by the Norfolk Hunt (MA) at their Steeplechase Course in Medfield on Sunday, May 5, 2019. Seven district hunts exhibited foxhounds: Green Mountain Hounds (VT), Myopia Hunt (MA), Norfolk Hunt (MA), North Country Hounds VT), Old North Bridge Hounds (MA), Tanheath Hunt (CT), and Wentworth Hunt (NH).
Entries competed in three divisions—American, Penn-Marydel, and Crossbred—but North American foxhunting is currently going through a confusing period in which foxhounds registered as American may defy the thinking of some traditionalists.
The New England Foxhound Show was hosted by the Norfolk Hunt in their Dover, Massachusetts country on May 6, 2018. Six hunts from four of the six New England States brought hounds: Green Mountain Hounds (VT), Myopia Hunt (MA), Norfolk Hunt (MA), Old North Bridge Hounds (MA), Tanheath Hunt (CT), and Wentworth Hunt (NH).
At the end of the day, a tricolor Crossbred dog hound, Norfolk Blarney 2016 (Myopia Bartlett 2008 ex Myopia Rachel 20112), was chosen Grand Champion of Show by Judge John Ike, ex-MFH, visiting from the Millbrook Hunt (NY).
I found Blarney’s breeding to be quite interesting, and I talked to Sue Billings, longtime Norfolk honorary whipper-in, about him as well.
The Norfolk Hunt (MA) can boast of well-known men of American history throughout its earliest rosters—Louis Brandeis, Justice of the U.S, Supreme Court and Leverett Saltonstall, a three-term Governor of Massachusetts and three-term U.S. Senator—but none of its members so dominated the reputation and future of the hunt as did Henry G. Vaughan. He appeared as a member’s guest in 1900 and three years later was elected MFH, a position he held to acclaim for the next thirty years. He was a complete New England gentleman and one of the founding fathers of organized mounted foxhunting in America.
His was hardly the case of a man arriving at a backwater village and uplifting the native savages. Vaughan arrived in Boston from a small town in Maine by way of Harvard University into the midst of the Boston Ames, Cabots, Forbes, Peabodys, Perkinses, and Saltonstalls to be not only embraced, but feted, revered, and almost deified.
Myopia Gammell 2012 is the second foxhound this season carrying the blood of the inimitable Potomac Jefferson to be named a Grand Champion of Show, this at the New England Hound Show held on Sunday, May 1, 2016.
Gammell was bred by now-retired huntsman Larry Pitts at Potomac, and drafted unentered to huntsman Tony Gammell at the Keswick Hunt (VA) in exchange for another breeding. Tony in turn drafted the still unentered pup to his pal, Brian Kiely, then huntsman at the Myopia Hunt (MA), who named the hound for Tony. Brian, of course, is now huntsman at Potomac, so that completes another circle, entirely!
by Patricia Jackson
The Old North Bridge Hounds (MA) held their Blessing of Hounds on the grounds of historic Longfellow’s Wayside Inn in Sudbury, Massachusetts on October 17, 2015. The blessing took place at Henry Ford’s Martha Mary Chapel on a perfect fall day in New England under clear blue skies and beautiful fall foliage. Master and huntsman Mrs. Virginia Zukatynski, hounds, staff, members, and guests joined together and proceeded past the Inn to the chapel for the blessing.
Spectators enjoyed the sights and sounds as Joint-Master Marjorie Franko led horses and riders over the brick pathways and across the old bridge, following the music of the bagpiper. Longfellow’s Wayside Inn has a long history of hosting foxhunts on the property, including the Norfolk Hunt, the old Millwood Hounds, Myopia, and Harry Worcester Smith's Middlesex Hounds. Situated on the Boston Post Road, one of the oldest commissioned roads in the U.S., much of it built along the two-foot wide Pequot Path used first by native Americans, the Wayside Inn has the distinction of being the country’s oldest operating inn, offering hospitality to travelers along the old road since 1716.
The Wayside Inn, made internationally famous by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s book of poems, Tales of a Wayside Inn, was run by the Howe family. Longfellow visited the Inn in 1862 and his book of poems was published the following year. In it he republished his poem, “Paul Revere’s Ride,” which contains his immortal phrase, “Listen my children and you shall hear of the midnight ride of Paul Revere.” Henry Ford bought the Inn in 1923, restored it, and formed the charitable trust that operates the Inn today.