The answer to the question I asked last night is that it this dog was a Chesapeake Bay retriever. The illustration comes from John Henry Walsh’s The Dogs of Great Britain, and Other Countries (p. 121).
The dog’s name was Trip. He was owned by C. H. Tilghman of Easton Maryland. This particular dog won “first premium” at a dog show in New York in 1877.
Walsh often got things wrong, but his description of the three types of Chesapeake that existed in the 1870′s is very interesting:
As there now appears to be three types of this dog, the members of the Maryland Poultry and Fancier’s Association, at their first show, held at Baltimore, January, 1877, appointed a committee to draw up a standard of points for judging. On the evening of January 8, 1877, they met the members of the club, and made their report, which was adopted. The committee consisted of the following gentlemen (each representing their respective type): Mr. John Stewart, representing the Otter breed, in color a tawny sedge, with very short hair; Mr. O. D. Foulks, the long-haired, or Red Winchester, and Mr. J. J. Turner, Jr., the curly-coated, in color a red-brown – the bitches showing the color and approximating to the points of the class to which they belong, a white spot on the breast in either class not being unusual. The measurements were as follows: from fore toe to top of back, 25 inches; from tip of nose to base of head, 10 inches; girth of body back of fore leg, 33 inches; breast, 9 inches; around fore feet, 6 inches; around fore arm below shoulder, 7 inches; between eyes, 2 1/4 inches; length of ears, 5 inches; from base of head to root of tail, 35 inches; tail, 16 inches in length; around muzzle below the eyes, 10 inches.
The Otter-type is the one that wound up taking over the Chesapeake breed. Long-haired (“Red Winchester”) and curly-coated varieties have since disappeared in the standardized form. (However, long-haired Chessies do pop up every once in a while.)
I found it interesting that there were some different guesses on the identity of this dog.
The best diagnostic feature of the Chessie is that its topline is usually not level– “hindquarters as high or a trifle higher than the shoulders,” says the AKC standard.
The long hair may have come from the way-coated retriever, which was evident in the US at this time, or it may have inherited some long-haired genes from the odd long-haired St. John’s water dog. Collie-types and setter-types could have also played a role in producing some long-haired dogs. The Irish water spaniel is also a possibility.
Yes, this is yet another breed that had a bit more diversity before it became fully standardized.
Update: Does anyone know of any good books or websites on the history of the Chesapeake Bay Retriever?
In case you didn’t know, this is what they look like today: