Dr J Sidney Turner

Dr John Sidney Turner - disciple of the old Persian Omar Khayyam

Breeder of champion Beaufort &  the unique ' SIX CHAMPIONS’. One can esteem Dr Turner as thé inspired Mastiff fancier of the golden 1880ties , driving force behind the breed improvement through close cooperation between leading breeders of the day as a/o Walter Kelsey Taunton , Edwin Nichols, Richard Cook , HG Woolmore , Captain Piddocke and the Belgian Reverend Henry KE Van Doorne .

‘Breed to the best’ is of course a golden rule , provided it is rendered rightly ~ that is , the selection is consistent and the breeder is influenced not alone by obvious excellence of the individual but by the family history as well . The knowing breeder goes back of the individuals and is influenced by the characters of their families; and while he prefers a dog that is not only good himself but came of stock that was invariably good , he values family excellence above that of the individual . In other words , if a bitch has too long a muzzle , his choice is a dog that comes from a family that were good in muzzle , rather than a dog that exhibits this quality but is of a family that were poor in muzzle . The bitch is of course an important element , yet a good dog and a well-bred but rather indifferent bitch may breed the very best .‘ sic Ashmont’ Kennel Secrets by his  American friend Dr JF Perry , chapter I ~ Selection of the sire pp 198-200 .

Dr J Sidney Turner , disciple of the old Persian Omar Khayyam and one of the OEMC founders in 1883 , lived in Upper Norwood , Stanton House , 81 Anerley road ; kennelman G. Duckling ; railway station , Crystal Palace 1 ½ mile ; in the centre ~ A view on Thicket Road , two men in front of Dr J Sidney Turner’ Stanton House  ; at right ~ A postcard of Anerley Road at the junction with Croydon Road , half a mile downwards from Stanton House displaying a similar housebuilding style , source ~ B & D’s ‘Kromo’series No 20064 , Postcard Pioneers - London EC .

The house name of No 81 , ' Stanton ' could have been related with the fact that he was a doctor in obstetrics . Elisabeth Stanton [ girl name - Cady , New York 1815 – 1902 ] was one of the founders of the Women Right Organisation . During her law studies she became aware of the discrimination against women and vowed the system that oppressed women . Mrs Stanton was also president of the National Women' Suffrage Association .

Following the 1881 census , he was born in 1843 at Shoreham at the south coast near Brighton as the son of James Singer Turner of Chyngton House . Dr JS Turner' first  wife was Isabella Scott born in 1846 at Stockwell very nearby Brixton , and they had four children born between 1871 and 1876 namely Arthur S ,  Alfred S , Gertrude T and Ethel M .

It would appear that Dr Turner, MRCS [Member of the Royal Academy of Surgeons] , practised from home as the 1897 Directory also lists ' Turner , Galton and Shearer , Physicians and Surgeons ' at No 81 .

‘Mr John Sidney Turner (of Upper Norwood London) whose connection with the Kennel Club began in 1881 , was first elected a member of the Committee in 1886 and in succession to Mr Shirley , he became chairman of the Committee in 1889 , and without making invidious comparisons , it would be difficult to name a gentleman who worked more earnestly for the Kennel Club and canine affairs generally than he .

Mr Turner was a surgeon , a profession in which he has attained great eminence . He is one of the founders of the Jenner Institute of Preventive Medicine , President of the South-Eastern Branch of the British Medical Association , a member of the council of the Obstetrical Society of London and a Fellow of the Linnaean Society . He is a frequent contributor to medical and canine literature , and many of his articles are familiar to the readers of the Kennel Gazette . He has been an exhibitor since 1862 , and has owned good specimens of many breeds including Black & Tans , Beagles , Bull Terriers, Fox Terriers , St Bernards , Retrievers, Yorkshire Terriers , Blenheim Spaniels , Esquimaux, Mastiffs and Bloodhounds . In Bloodhounds such well-known winners as Helene , Lord Raglan , Trinket , Truelove , Triumph & Wandle Welcome .’ sic EW Jaquet’ The Kennel Club .

Dr Sidney Turner 's first show Mastiff was Cedric The Saxon , bred by Mr Edwin Nichols in December 1876 out of ch Wolsey's niece Lady sired by Big Ben' Wallace . Cedric' first stud book mention was a 3rd prize at the Alexandra Palace show in Feb. 1881 , in May 1881 Dr Turner bred his first litter and only 3 years later , he judged Mastiffs at Crystal Palace to which the ten years younger Malcolm B Wynne reacted in his notes for the AKC with  ' one would sooner see so important a show of Mastiffs as those at the Crystal Palace , adjudicated by one who possessed more experience in the ring …'

He bred some 13 KC registered Mastiff litters between 1881 and 1992 , using four times Crown Prince , one time his son Hotspur and  Hotspur's sons Constable , Parsifal & Dion each one time ; two times Beau , one time his son Beaufort (see below at left) and also Beaufort's son Ayrshire . The  report hereabove about the Crystal Palace Kennel Club Show of July 1884 is from the hand of Dr J Sidney Turner ~ nom de plume ‘Este’ ~ awarding challenges to ch Crown Prince and Rosalind [CP’ daughter bred by Dr JS Turner] , both owned by the controversal Dr Forbes Winslow of Cavendish Square , London city .

Dr Turner stated that a lot of splendid specimens are bred by combining typically headed dogs with bitches of strains famous for their size and general symmetry . He ended up his Mastiff show career in 1895 with Ayrshire , bred by Mrs Willins . Ayrshire (see above at right) , by then sold to S Smith , won still several prizes in 1896 at the age of almost eight years . Practically all his Mastiff stock was fawn coloured ; WK Taunton' Constable was presumably the only brindle stud successfully used by Dr Turner , while mated to The Lady Isabel producing a/o Seneschal ~ VHC at Alexandra Palace 1888 , Crystal Palace 1889 & Manchester 1890 .

The shield in the centre (made by Dr Turner) was presented to the Kennel Club in 1920 by Dr Turner’ widow and was awarded for Best Brace at the Kennel Club’s show; engraved silver roundels and silver dogs’ masks modelled by Dr Turner , who was an accomplished sculptor , surround the silver shield . The head at the base of the shield is Dr Turner’ interpretation of the ideal Mastiff head [ at the top of the shield  two Bloodhound heads are shown ! ] . Turner’ coat of arms mentions  ‘esse quam videri ‘ [to be , rather than to seem] .

Dr Turner owned and/or bred also other breeds as Cassell’ New Book of the Dog [page 147] mentions ~ ‘ but admirable Bloodhounds have also given distinction to the kennels of Mark Beaufoy , Dr Sidney Turner and Arthur Croxton-Smith [ Philokuon born 1865 , residing at Burlington House , Wandle Road , Upper Tooting , ten miles West of Upper Norwood and KC chairman 1937 - 1948] ; the Bloodhound or Sleuth-hound standard was drawn up by Dr Turner & Mr Edwin Brough [Drury’ British dogs page 80] .

During the month April of 1894 , the name John Sidney Turner MRCS was gazetted as having been appointed a Justice of Peace for the Country of Kent by the Lord Chancellor [Baron Farrer Herschell 1837-1899] on the recommendation of Arthur Philip Stanhope [1838-1905] ~ 6th Earl at Elvaston , one of the great Houses oozing Mastiff history . Dr Turner awarded Mastiff cc’s until 1915  [Botanical Gardens London , LKA , June 9] while his friend WK Taunton awarded challenges until 1920 [Crystal Palace , Kennel Club , November 3] , the year Mrs Turner donated the ’Sidney Turner Cup’ to the Kennel Club presumably in connection with her husband’ passing away while his old friend WK Taunton died in January 1927 .

In choosing names for his own bred stock ,  Dr Turner wasn't the only XIX c Mastiff breeder who made use of Sir Walter Scott [1771-1832] , the Scottish novelist who was strongly influenced by Wm Shakespeare [1564-1616] . Dr Turner' first Mastiff , so far as known , was 'Cedric the Saxon' bred by Mr Edwin Nichols , his first Mastiff bitch was Laura, whom Dr Turner renamed as 'The Lady Rowena' who figured in Sir Walter Scott' novel 'Ivanhoe' as the saxon heroine of Sir Wilfred of Ivanhoe , whose father , Cedric the Saxon , disowns him because of his love for The Lady Rowena . 'The Lady Rowena' was also a colourful character of Shakespeare'  play 'Vortigern' . She did the first recorded toast in England in 450 AD at a great feast by the British King Vortigern for his Saxon allies . Rowena , the beautiful daughter of the Saxon King Hengist held up a large goblet and drank to the King , saying  'Louerd King , waes hael '  [Lord King , be of healthy]  to which he replied 'Drink hael' . After that there was much more boozing and evidently some passion going on , as the evening ended with Vortigern & The Lady Rowena married . Rowena may be the old English Hrodwyn , a compound of hreod  [fame] and wine [friend] . The annals of the Crystal Palace mention that on the 14th August 1878 Mr & Mrs Chippendale and Company began a series of comedies in the Opera House ; maybe Dr J Sidney Turner picked up there some Shakespearian ideas  …

Among Dr Turner’ many talents was that of sculpting , hereabove at left one of his bronzes . Hugh Dalziel’ British Dogs , 1888-‘97 three vols , contains a drawing of ch Beaufort by Alexander Francis Lydon 1836-‘17 , skilled watercolourist & engraver of natural history subjects ; he worked for the printer Benjamin Fawcett to whom he had been apprenticed from an early age and collaborated also with Reverend Francis Orpen Morris .

Church & Dwight Soda card  No 9 of the Champion Dog Series [1902] , Dr JS Turner’ ch Beaufort , drawn by Gustav Muss-Arnolt . In 1846 , the New Englanders , John Dwight of Massachusetts and his brother-in-law , Dr. Austin Church of Connecticut , took the first step toward establishing an industry that has since become of national importance .

Baking soda , which is a trade name for bicarbonate of soda , is now found in practically every kitchen throughout the country and is regarded a necessity by millions of Americans ; the picture [presumably without advert] was also published in Harper’ Weekly 28th September 1891 .

Gustav Muss-Arnolt was one of the most colorful and outspoken American dog fanciers during the late 19th Century ; he served continually as an AKC Delegate and was also a member of the AKC Board of Directors . He grew up with dogs , his father being a Great Dane breeder in Germany.

Generally considered a fair and impartial judge in the ring , he adjudicated numerous times times in America , England and Europe. The first judge to publicly state that type was the most important consideration in properly evaluating dog , he backed up that belief with his decision in the ring , regardless of public opinion to the contrary ; his show critiques were extremely straightforward and blunt , and apparently , they were also deadly accurate as well , which did not endear him to those whose dogs did not win under him .

Muss-Arnolt’ emotions were best expressed as a professional artist , specialising in canine portraiture . His principal media were pen and ink drawings and oil paintings . He created numerous drawings for ‘The American Gazette’ of some of the top dogs of the day . His works are historically significant because almost all are of specific dogs which were exemplary representatives of their respective breeds ; besides mastery of form and anatomy , the works exhibit evidence of being created by someone who not only loved dogs , but understand their essence as well .