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George Washington had a BC?

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Working collies have been imported to America since the beginning of the nation. They were simply called collies or collie dogs. There is a painting of George Washington, bidding farewell to the Marquis de Lafayette at Mount Vernon in 1784, with his family and two dogs. One dog appears to be a spaniel, and the other is a collie that would not be seen as different from any Border Collie today (Presidential Pets by Niall Kelly, Abbeville Press, 1992)


This is from the Border Collie Museum site.


Esox & Alex

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I was in DC recently on a class trip with my son. We visited Mt. Vernon and saw a painting of George Washington at a family

gathering, that seemed to include a border collie. It was fun to see. What do you think?




Smart man, smart dog.

Looks like a merle.


Love it!

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I think it's a shiny black and white. It's hard to tell - it could also be a spaniel - physically there was little difference back then between working spaniels and some sheepdogs.


But, it's an outdoor picture (note the landscape in the background and the clothes of the girls - and the wildflowers). The dog could represent GW's desire to be known primarily as a gentleman farmer above all. Sheep were his particular interest.


Jefferson also was highly interested in sheep, with a hope that the new nation would jump at the chance we had, with the vast tracts of land open to even the humblest farmer, to surpass our once-patron and now rival, Britain, in wool production. However, he studiously avoided British sheep breeds and even British sheep dogs - instead importing a French variety of bobtailed curly-coated sheepdogs.

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