Cook' brood Idalia vs the Gloucester doctors Bailey-Eadon & Slatter

According to the Census 1891 , Dr Henry George Bailey-Eadon , born 1852 at Sheffield , resided together with his father Samuel , a retired doctor born in 1810 , at Hambrook Court Winterbourne , North of  Bristol , Glos . Within the Winterbourne village there are a number of listed buildings , including the 18th century Hambrook Court with impressive boundary walls and wooded grounds , once tenanted by Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Brereton who commanded the troops during the Bristol Riots of 1831 and who unfortunately committed suicide because of the general condemnation over his lack of strong action against the rioters . Dr Oliver Thomas Slatter , b 1853 at Chepstow Gloucester , lived in his youth at Paddington - London but moved later on to Ryde House , Caldicote Chepstow .

At left ~An engraving of the Illustrated London News , displaying prize dogs at Margate 1884 , a/o ch Crown Prince’ presumable sire ch The Emperor and ch Crown Prince’ champion daughter Elaine [lateral view], sis to champions Orlando , Hotspur , The Lady Gladys , Rosalind & ch Beaufort’ dam  The Lady Isabel ; Louis Wain 1860 - 1939 was the artist who drew the series of ''Celebrated Dogs' , a/o ch Crown Prince , one of the few images ever published xoncerning that notorious Mastiff specimen .


Dr Slatter bred in 1884 a litter from Idalia [ch Colonel’ son Turk x ch Nero’ daughter Brenda] sired by ch Crown Prince which resulted in Debonair [1st at Carnarvon ‘85] , May Queen ,  Prince Imperial and Etoile , the latter being purchased by Dr Bailey-Eadon whom mated her in ‘85 to Leolinus* ’ son Sir Tom producing Dr Thomas Carr’ Masca Ashdown . Note - * Leolinus was brother to Rev Mellor’ ch Creole purchased by Chas H Mason who emigrated to the States .

Idalia , one of the very few  granddaughters  of Beaufoy' ch Nero , became owned by the OEMC Secretary R Cook whom mated her to ch Orlando resulting in champion Count Orlando , b May 1886 , and described as ~ ‘ A poor specimen , weak tapering muzzle , good headed and coloured , coarse in the ears , short in the couplings , straight in the hocks and not good on the legs …’

In 1888 Dr Bailey-Eadon got a litter from Etoile , this time sired by ch Beaufort which gave a/o Lady Lucy , Princess of Wales , Duke of Beaufort and Fitz Beaufort ; the latter was used by Dr Bailey-Eadon at stud to Napoleon’ sis Princess Louise , bred by Sheener out of Lolo , unregistered , sired by ch Prince of Wales and resulting in in a litter dd June '89 , a/o Hambrook Lassie and Bocassio , the latter later on renamed as ‘Vice Chancellor’ and transferred to the famous breeders Captain Jno Leonard Piddocke and his wife Adelaide , Cobrey Park ,  Ross on Wye . That Princess Louise has produced the year before also a litter sired by ch Beaufort which gave a/o ch Isolde purchased by Dr John Sidney Turner who bred from her a litter dd Jan '81 sired by ch Beaufort' son Ayrshire .

Here below tableaus depicting a/o Vice Chancellor , the right one also includes Lady Gerda , out of Scots Queen (ch Prince of Wales ex ch Crown Prince' sis Queen Liberty) sired by ch Beaufort' son Sir Stafford , the latter renowned for having sired CC Rice' ch Frifgga Secunda .

Bocassio’ uncle Napoleon , owned by Dr Lougest of Liverpool , got two challenge certificates and was described by Mark Beaufoy as ~ ‘A big dog but his head , though fair , wants depth and squareness in muzzle ; he , too , has a light eye .’Bocassio aka Vice Chancellor , bred by Dr Bailey-Eadon , got a 1st puppy prize at Gloucester ‘90 under Dr JS Turner reporting ~ ‘Good in head , muzzle , mask , eyes and wrinkle , rather large in ear , fair in body and legs .’ At Bath ’91 Edwin Nichols wrote ~ ‘ Vice Chancellor has some of the fashionable complaints of the breed , short in head – which is good - , short in body – which is bad - , short on his legs , and yet slightly cow hock , being very small from the hock to the stifle joint .’  At Birmingham ’92 [vide tableau above figuring a/o Vice Chancellor ] TW Allen placed him first , mentioning  ~ ‘On the small side and might be better in coat and feet ; but he is a very typical dog good in head points and body with capital limbs ; his general appearance is indicative of great power .’

Dr Bailey-Eadon’ residence at Hambrook Court was situated some six miles North-East of the symbol of the city of Bristol ,  Clifton Suspension Bridge , spanning the beautiful Avon Gorge. For almost 150 years this Grade I listed structure has attracted visitors from all over the world . Its story began in 1754 with the dream of a Bristol wine merchant who left a legacy to build a bridge over the Gorge .

first competition in 1829 was judged by Thomas Telford , the leading civil engineer of the day. Telford rejected all the designs and submitted his own but the decision to declare him the winner was unpopular and a second competition was held in 1830 .

Twenty-four year old Isambard Kingdom Brunel was eventually declared the winner and appointed project engineer – his first major commission , later on he designed a/o also the Crystal Palace . The foundation stone was laid in 1831 but the project was dogged with political and financial difficulties and by 1843 , with only the towers completed , the project was abandoned .

Isambard Kingdom Brunel died prematurely aged fifty-three in 1859 but the Clifton Suspension Bridge was completed as his memorial and finally opened in 1864 .

' Burwalls ' , the red brick house (here below) at the Leigh Woods end of the Bridge , was constructed in Victorian Gothic style in 1872 for a businessman who sold it to the Wills family of tobacco fame in the 1890s . William Henry Wills [see pic in the middle ] was first chairman of Imperial Tobacco [ see Wills tobacco card  drawn by Arthur Wardle , the author of 'Ideal Mastiffs' figuring ch's Frigga & daughter Frigga II) ] and his families personal estate was estimated to make the Wills family one of the richest families in the land . Henry Wills made a donation of £100,000 to the creation of the University of Bristol . Unlike many of the supporters of the University the Wills were not Liberals or Quakers but Congregationalists .

Dr George Renton – breeder of ch Prince of Wales

This Prince of Wales  was sired by Beaufoy' ch Prince  Regent , the latter a quality specimen who usually stood  in the shadow of his  widely known notorious brother ch Crown Prince but at the important Crystal Palace Show (July '83) he won the champion prize beating not only ch Pontiff but also ch Crown Prince and a communicated report says - 'Prince Regent certainly lacks the massive character of his brother , Crown Prince (2nd) but in length of body , mask & stifles he is certainly superior '.  A pity Prince Regent died at a rather early age in '84 due to diphtheria (a contagious disease)  ; he only sired five KCSB registered litters , a/o bred by also Edgar Hanbury & Richard Cook of Ilford .  Dr Renton ch Prince was described in show reports as a/o - 'Very well built & symmetrical , though not very large , good shoulders , legs & feet , sometime overtopped , wants more depth in muuzzle , light eye , deficient in wrinkle .' Note - regarding the remark - 'wants more depth of muzzle' , it probably refers to lack of required depth & fullness of the lower jaw off muzzle end

Here below at left Beaufoy' ch Prince Regent , at right ch Prince of Wales (not to confuse with his namesake Prince of Wales b 1897 and owned by Dr CA Lougest , a breeder to be commented in a next article ) .

Some backgrounds in regards to Dr Renton

The impressive high Victorian pile that is No 15 was designed to be Shotley Bridge’ Town Hall . And it was the autumn of 1860 when a group of County Durham oligarchs gathered to plan a hall worthy of their home town . This band of timber merchants and drapers , led by local surgeon Dr John Renton , were small-town magnates with big city ideas . No modest little municipal block for Shotley Bridge .

General Practice in the 1880s was dominated by the Renton brothers, who with the aid of several competent assistants , ran an extensive practice throughout Consett , Blackhill & Leadgate . William , the eldest son of Dr John Renton , who had founded the practice earlier in the century , was Medical Officer of Health for Consett and surgeon in charge of the recently built Consett Iron Company Infirmary in Parliament Street , Consett .

His brother George , the Mastiff fancier , was renowned not only for his position as Medical Officer of Health for Leadgate , but for his diverse activities in community life. He was a member of the Benfieldside Board , captain of Consett Cricket Club , and occasionally ‘trod the boards’ in local amateur dramatic productions . The names of the two Rentons were to be found almost weekly in the local newspapers . The most lurid report perhaps is quoted as follows - ‘In a domestic quarrel at Blackhill , a woman butchered her husband with a knife in the groins , so that a portion of the intestines protruded . Dr William Renton was called , he quickly mounted and brought Dr O'Donnell his assistant , and then Dr George Renton arrived . The doctors were obliged to call in the police to maintain peace and quiet in the house’. Surprisingly enough the man recovered so it must be assumed that even in those days the gentlemen of the press were occasionally guilty of some measure of exaggeration .

Renton George MD, surgeon & medical officer , once resided at Viewlands Blackhill nr Consett . Born Feb 27 1843 he was for many years Surgeon to the Consett Iron Company (see at left) , died Dec 11 1899 and buried at Blackhill Cemetery (see at right)  ; his wife Mary died March 1921 and was buried at St Leonards on Sea ; their daughter Agnes Marion died Nov 3th 1883 aged 5 , Dorothy Isabel died June 30th  1893 aged 7 , their son John Stuart b Oct 15th 1910 died Oct 29th 1920 and was just like his mother buried at St Leonards .

Their other (older) son Dr Ralph Stewart Renton , b Sept 7th  1877 d Dec 27 1956 , was a medical student in Newcastle upon Tyne , graduating MB , BS from Durham University in 1902 and proceeding to the MD in 114 . Soon after graduation he settled in practice at Blackhill - Co Durham , thus following in the footsteps of his father Dr George Renton , and his grandfather Dr John Renton , both of whom practised for many years in the same area . Dr RS Renton became honorary surgeon to the Consett Hospital , and remained in practice at Blackhill until he entered the RAMC for service in Egypt &  France in the first World War , service which was recognized by the award of the Military Cross  in 1918 . After the war he was in practice at Coltishall – Norfolk , for a year or two until 1921 , when he finally settled at Clevedon Somerset where he became honorary surgeon to the cottage hospital and medical officer to the Clevedon Convalescent Homes .

Dr R S Renton had many outside interests , being a keen gardener with a preference for the cultivation of roses , a lover of cricket , a keen supporter of the local dramatic society , and a past president of the Clevedon Rugby football club , which he helped to form . In addition he acquired such a deep knowledge of church architecture that his services as a lecturer on the subject were in frequent demand and not to forget also a breeder of Deerhounds , he a/o owned Lady Diana b 1919 and bred by Miss Doxford out of Ruritania Yvette sired by Roebuck Laddie .

The KCSB 1875 mentions No 4447 Guelph b 1873 – 1st prize at Darlington ’74 - and owned by G Renton MD , Consett – Durham , breeder Major Elms by Joseph L Dickinson’ Lion out of Lupa , the latter by ch Turk’ brother Wolf out of Una (Lindoe’ Druid x Bathurst Juno)  . Now Joseph L Dickinson resided at Belle Vue House Shotley Bridge , the home village of the Renton family , and was elected in 1870 by the North of England Institute of Mining & Mechanical Engineers and stated as a ‘colliery agent’ by the census 1871 , presumably for his father John b 1912, a coal owner .

The KCSB for the 1874 show results states JL Dickinson’ adress as ‘Derwent Cote House , Lintz Green Station , Co Durham’ which later on was occupied by John J Hedley , manager of the Consett Iron Co . So it’s quite possible Dr Renton and Joseph L Dickinson were on friendly terms , the latter one also on cordial terms with former ch Turk’ owners Fred Robinson & HS Wallace . J L Dickinson owned a/o ch Briton bred by Miss Aglionby , Harold bred by MB Wynn .

The KCSB 1884 mentions Guelph II (renamed as  ch Prince of Wales) No 15598 as b Feb 8th 1883 and bred by G Renton MD Marchmont lane Grange Edinburgh , by ch Prince Regent out of Leah , by a son of Octavius Green’ ch Monarch out of Heelah , the latter bred by Major Galton . George Renton’ city address here might had to do with his professional connections vis-a-vis the ‘Royal College of Surgeons’ there .

‘Guelph’ is a Canadian city where several emigrated Renton members lived , a/o John Renton (1816-1893) , a blacksmith born nr Lauder , Berwickshire - Scotland , one of five Rentons who found their way eventually to Guelph . Maybe this was George Renton’ uncle  or other relative .  Sixty miles East of Guelph lies Toronto where Charles W Dickinson of Dye Works bred those famous Wingfield Mastiffs (to be commented in a future article)  , and there’s some uncomfirmed supposition he was related to (maybe his father) Joseph L Dickinson of Shotley Bridge.