the bluebonnet norfolk terrier club
Historic Norfolk Breeders/Kennels
Historical Breeders
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Though she never bred a drop ear Norwich, Mrs. Randolph must be included as an integral part of our history. She was the first club president and the had the first american champion. Theo Randolph-Oakley, Reprinted from The Norwich and Norwich Terrier News Jubilee Issue: I got my first Norwich, then Jones Terriers, from a man who schooled race horses in England. The dog was no good I grant you. We called him Harold and this was around 1939. Then I wrote to someone, W.E. West. I don't know how I happened to write him, but he sent me a picture of six dogs and I showed it to someone who spent a lot of time in England and she brought back three! I got two of that litter and the best one was a bitch they told me had had a torn ear that was sewn back together. Her name was Rachael. She was a lovely dog and always got noticed. She was the first Norwich champion in America and her picture was used to illustrate the Standard. There was Apple Jack, a bit short- legged, and Tiger who wasn't a show dog. Farndon Victor and Romeo. He had a lot of dark hair on his coat and muzzle. I had some grizzles that I got from Harry Peters, and a brindle! In fact, two brindles. They weren't very good. Years ago the Club had great discussion about color. I was once President because Harry Peters wanted me to be so he could tell me what do do. I was young and he was grown up and therefore too smart to want to be President himself. People today seem to be stacking their dogs and holding their tails up. This isn't how they should be. Norwich and Norfolk are natural dogs and should stand on their own in all ways. The way I see it we should have "animal people" breeding our dogs, not "show peole." Show peole do not interest me because they cannot see beyond the ring. I'm lucky, I have a good eye for a dog, a horse or any kind of animal, and it has saved me because I don't try to get what someone else says is good if I don't see it myself. We need to see the WHOLE picture and the picture should be one of balance. Contributed by Frank Rogers: I got my very first Norwich Terrier back in the 1960s after I saw one in Virginia, while visiting a friend's parents over the Easter holiday. I was hooked. It so happened that I was staying in Upperville Virginia and nearby was the Kennel where this little guy was bred so I made arrangements to visit. Within a few months I had two Norwich bitches from Mrs. Randolph. In 1937 Mrs. Robert Winthrop of Boston then Mrs. Theodora Randolph of Upperville, Virginia obtained her first Norwich Terrier from Mr. West for type and his Farndon dogs were first and foremost hunt terriers. Mrs. Randolph’s original kennel name was “Groton” named for her racing stable. Next she chose “Halfway” which was her home, and today, or until her death at 90 years of age in 1996 it was “OAKLEY”, her magnificent horse farm near Upperville overlooking the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. Oakley has produced 24 Champions, Mrs. Randolph owned the first American prick eared champion dog, “Apple Jack” by Airman’s Sam Browne whose sire was Tobit. He was also the first Norwich Terrier to Win Best of Breed at Westminster in 1941. The Oakley prefix is a name to conjure with. For almost 60 years Oakley Norwich were still being bred true to type and size and character…well at least what Mrs. Randolph thought a Norwich Terrier should be. She was not swayed by the show ring or ever swayed from her ideals.. a small game terrier weighing not more than 11-12 pounds. Mrs. Randolph was the first President of the Norwich Terrier Club, breeder of a number of champions and stock provider to breed lovers. Theodora Randolph has always preserved the true type temperament of the Roughrider Jones breed. Note: In the 1980’s I was living in Middleburg very near Mrs. Randolph and she had asked me to visit her because she was interested in purchasing a Norwich stud dog. I want over with Norwich Pedigree book in hand, surrounded by standard poodles, German shepherds, giant long haired dachshunds, not one Norwich. After a few hours she was not interested. The look of the Norwich had changed since 1950, it had lost that rat catcher look just as well. NOTE: I (Frank) wanted to clarify in my Note on Ms Randolph, when I visited her she had her favorite pets in the house. All of the Norwich were kept in the kennels which were not located on Oakley. In the 1960s she had a wonderful woman named Mrs. Grimes who did all the whelping and kennel business and later they were moved to a farm that Mrs. Randolph owned right across from Oakley called Salem Farm. It was great to arrive there to see al the runs with at least 25 to 30 or more very thick hard coated little prick eared Norwich terriers just yapping away as one drove up. I guess she was still looking for that type years later but eventually gave in to a few black and tans. I give Mrs, Grimes a lot of the credit to many of the good breeing stock. She lived 24/7 with those dogs for many years until hear death and her replacement was not nearly as experienced. She was replaced with a wonderful dedicated woman who stayed until Mrs, Randolph passed on.