History of the Breed - Jersey (2)

by John Thornton

Guernsey cattle are not prohibited and a few, very few, may still be found on the Island. Intermarriages have occasionally taken place between the inhabitants, and it is said a Guernsey bride sometimes receives a cow as dowry. This animal is naturally cherished; its butter is deeper in colour than the Jersey, but very rarely of greater quantity. Crosses between the breeds are neither successful nor advantageous; the yellow colour, and the pink nose and eyes of the Guernsey crop up in the offspring, which retains a coarseness, at once detected and rejected by the judges. Indeed the natural pride that every Jerseyman has in his cow, and his desire to mate her to a prize or decorated bull, of itself, sufficient to keep the breed pure.
The French cattle for beef arrive generally on Thursday mornings and come mostly from the Brittany coast. They are landed at a different quay in St. Heliers to that from which cattle are shipped from the Island, and driven at once to a large yard and slaughter-house at the head of the harbour. About one hundred and upwards arrive weekly, according to the trade, and are of a most varied description, of all sizes and colours - reddish browns, brindles, red and white, and black and white, many of them showing unmistakable signs of a Shorthorn cross. They are all examined by the veterinary inspector and marked; the steers are bought by butchers and driven away to be slaughtered as required. The bulls, cows, and acalves are not permitted to leave the yard, but are there killed, and the carcases taken away by the various purchasers to the market or their own shops. Every precaution is thus taken to keep the Island breed both pure and healthy, and though the beef supply is abundant, it is not of the finest quality.
On the 18th of January, 1834, the Society drew up their first scale of points. Two of the best cows on the Island were selected as models; one was allowed to be perfect in her forequarters and barrel, the other in her hind-quarters. With the help of the best breeders and dealers a scale for governing the judges at the cattle shows, was drawn up as follows:

Scale of Points for Bulls.

Article   Points
 1. Purity of breed on male and female sides, reputed for having produced rich and yellow butter 4
 2.  Head fine and tapering; check small; muzzle fine, and encircled with white; nostrils high and open; horns polished, crumpled, not too thick at the base and tapering, and tipped with black; ears small, of an orange colour within; eye full and lively 8
 3.  Neck fine and highly placed on the shoulders; chest broad, barrel hooped and deep, well ribbed home to the hips 3
 4.  Back straight from the withers to the setting on the tail, at right angles to the tail; tail fine, hanging two inches below the hock 3
 5.  Hide thin and movable, mellow, well covered with soft and fine hair of a good colour 3
 6.  Forearm large and powerful; legs short and straight, swelling and full above the knee, and fine below it............   2
 7.  Hind quarters, from the huckle to the point of the rump, long and well filled up; the legs not to cross behind in walking  2
  Perfection.........  25


No prize shall be awarded to a bull having less than 20 points
Scale of Points for Cows and Heifers.

Article  Points 
 1. Breed on male and female sides reputed for producing rich and yellow butter  4
 2.  Head small, fine, and tapering; eye full and lively; muzzle fine and encircled with white; horns polished and a little crumpled, tipped with black; ears small, of an orange colour within 8
 3.  Back straight from the withers to the setting-on of the tail; chest deep, and nearly of a line with the belly 4
 4.  Hide thin, movable, but not too loose, well covered with fine and soft hair of good colour 2
 5.  Barrel hooped, and deep, well ribbed home, having but little space between the ribs and hips; tail fine, hanging two inches below the hock 2
 6.  Fore legs straight and fine; thighs full and long, close together when viewed from behind; hind legs short, and bones rather fine; hoofs small; hind legs not to cross in walking 2
 7.  Udder full, well up behind; teats large and squarely placed, being wide apart; milk-veins large and swelling 4
  Perfection for Cows  27


Two points shall be deducted from the number required for perfection in Heifers, as their udder and milk-veins cannot be fully developed. A Heifer will therefore be considered perfect at 25 points.

No prizes shall be awarded to Cows or Heifers having less than 24 points.

The above points were approved of and decided on by Messrs. Brehaut, Bevens, Le Gresley, Simon, and Le Bas, Cattle dealers, in the presence of His Excellency the President and Committee for 1834.

Form of Judge`s Declaration

I,A.B., do declare upon my honour, that I will well and truly judge, according to the best of my skill and knowledge, which is the best animal in each class without favour or partiality.

Each prize bull shall receive a premium from the Society of three pence, beyond the customary charge paid for every cow belonging to a subscriber that shall be in calf by such bull.

No person shall receive a prize for a bull, stallion, or boar  until they shall have remained in the Island at least one whole season after the prizes were awarded, and which must be duly certified to the satisfaction of the Agricultural Committee.

Cattle or swine having been reared on the Island by a subscriber, or the bonâ fide property of the exhibitor for six months before the exhibition, shall be considered his own rearing.

In course of time and experience this scale of points received sundry additions and modifications, as will be shown hereafter. Meantime the little society began to flourish. King William IV was graciously pleased to become Patron, and Her Majesty has continued this Patronage. The States grant of £100 was continued and paid a second year.

The first show was held March 31, 1834. The prizes amounted to £24. There were seven Parochial prizes of £1 each, and a general prize of £3, which Col. Le Couteur won with a red and white yearling bull. The Report for the year very modestly stated, that it was not within its limits to point out all the improvements that might be adopted; but the fatting of cattle having been recently introduced with success by an intelligent farmer, it may be desirable to offer a premium for the finest ox - this branch of agriculture having hitherto been entirely overlooked by the Jersey farmer, the beef of the island being confessedly much inferior to that of Guernsey. The cultivation of chicory, Trifolium incarnatum, and parsnips was advocated. It was resolved to encourage fine bulls, with points up to perfection by giving a premium of £10 for perfect bulls, and allowing the owner 2s. a head for each cow that shall have been with calf by such bulls.
In 1835 the show furnished not only a larger supply, but the animals were of a much finer order as to breed and condition. The Society was congratulated on the happy results of its influence in producing a spirit of emulation, that the race of Jersey cows may become still more valuable and perfect.
Her Majesty became Patroness in 1837. £55 was awarded in prizes; £1 each for the best yearling bull and yearling heifer in each parish; £2 each for the best bull and best heifer among these; £10 for a bull with 25 points, the service fee to be 1s 6d.; and £4 for a cow with 27 points. Two shows were held; one in March for bulls, and the other in May for cows and heifers. This division of the shows has continued up to the present day.
The year 1836 saw an increased number of animals exhibited; and it was remarked that they were cleaner and in better condition than formerly. The 71 entries increased to 153 the next year; and it was suggested that arrangements be made, to keep one superior bull in each parish *.
[* The island of Jersey is divided into twelve  parishes, viz. St. Brelade, St. Clement, St. Helier, St. John, St. Lawrence, St. Martin, St. Mary, St. Owen, St. Peter, St. Saviour, Grouville, and Trinity. Each parish has a church, and its own administration. These parishes are subdivided into vingtaines, or double tithings]
and encouragemnt be given to keep first rate heifers in the Island, as the high prices offered were a strong temptation to export them. The States grant was given in separate prizes, and  the Society`s balance in hand amounted to £52 16s. 5½d.
The system of giving points for pedigree (which, in the Island interpretation, means "the offspring of a prize or decorated male or female stock"), from which eventually dawned the Herd Book, commenced in 1838. "The period having arrived when the pedigree of cattle is to be recorded, two points being allowed for breed on the male side, two on the female, and four when the stock is derived.from prize cattle on both sides, competitors will now be required to state the pedigree of their cattle in sending in their list, as the Committee will be charged to add the points for breed from the record book, to those awarded by the Judges." Sweepstakes, as in the English, Irish, and Scotch societies, were also recommended, and afterwards occassionally adopted. Three more points were added to the scale, viz. one for growth and two for general  appearance, making a total of 28 for bulls, 30 for cows, and 28 for heifers. Two new rules were also enacted; one to the effect, that any person withholding the service of a prize bull from the public shall forfeit the premium, and the other, that all heifers having had premium adjudged to them shall be kept on the Island until they shall have dropped their first calf. If previously sold for exportation they shall forfeit te premium. The report for the year concludes:- "This Society set out with the desire of creating a spirit of industry and emulation. It has fulfilled its object. It has improved, greatly improved, the breed of cattle.At the last show 166 head of very fine cattle, in a most superior condition as compared with former exhibitions, were declared by the judges to evince in the most satisfactory and conclusive manner, the undeniable improvement that is manifested in form and condition. Their value has also increased, £30 having been refused for a prize cow and her prize yearling heifer, and £20 have been realized for another prize heifer."

The report for 1839 again pointed out that the attention of the Board of Management was closely directed to the improvement of the breed of Island cattle. It adds:- "The cows indigenous to our soil had long been exported from the Island generally in such poor and wretched condition, that they were bought by the English farmers from their cheapness and utility as regarded the dairy only. Until recent years, so little was the breed of this island distinguished, that the cows imported into England were sold as the product of ALderney, although that little speck in the Channel could not have supplied one hundredth part of the exportation from the Channel Islands. The Board has now to congratulate the Jersey farmer, that while the celebrity of the Jersey cow has advanced so high in esteem in the mother country, her value has increased in the same proportion. In our last report instances were referred to, of cows exhibited at our Cattle shows, fetching the high prices of £25 and £30 each; and it is highly encouraging to add that this amelioration in so important a branch of the farm is far from being stationary. The exhibits in March and May of the present year were not only more crowded than on any preceding occasion, but the bulls, cows, heifers, and yearlings, brought for competition, when arranged for adjudication, showed a display of cattle as to condition and breed, never before equalled. There has arisen that honourable emulation among the Jersey farmers, which has  called forth an attention to the breed and condition of their cattle, that makes the traffic in the sale of cows, an important item of our island exports, and of course a very essential one in the profit of the farm."
The following year nineteen bulls were decorated. Several were rejected that formerly would have been considered deserving a prize. Twenty-six heifers and twelve cows received premiums or decorations, and the Judges, on this occasion stated to the Secretary the defects which they observed, and deducted from the number of points required in the perfect animal. By this regulation, on referring to the note book in which the defects were recorded, a farmer could, by a judicious system of crossing, command the improvement of form required. Earl Spencer`s treatise on breeding was quoted at some length; and the report concluded with the hope that by adhering to the rules recommended by the best authority, the genral form of the "CrumpledHorned Cattle" may be brought into a repute as certain as that of the Durham or Shorthorn breed; that by the excellent food, warmth and shelter insisted on for calves of the first year, Earl Spencer`s pure Jersey yearlings were nearly as large as most of the two-year old heifers seen on the Island.
Considering the good work the Society was effecting with he small funds at its command, some little pique was felt that the States gave so little assistance. The £100 granted to pay the prizes awarded was gratefully acknowledged; but some surprise was expressed  that £60.000 [*] was voted for commerce, and only £100 to stimulate
[* Probably a State vote for harbour docks.]
husbandry in a soil and climate highly favoured by Providence, and which only required the light of science and spur of competition, to bring the whole surface of the Island into the highest state of culture. Seven years` attention to breeding had almost caused the ancient characteristic defect, the drooping hind quarter, of the Jersey Cattle to disappear, besides several minor defects, and it only remained to give squareness to the hind quarter, and roundness to the barrel, to render it a most beatiful animal. "The fact that neither the 30 points to cows nor the 28 to bulls have ever yet been awarded, sufficiently evinces the jealous care and attention with which the Judges have discharged their oftentimes difficult duty." At the annual dinner this year, Col. Le Couteur, in proposing the Society, made the following speech, which was quoted in the English newspaper:- "He would tell those who are lukewarm to this Society to look back ten years. The land foul with weeds, crops inferior, liquid manure wasted, the market ill supplied. What had been effected? In cattle, beauty of form and flesh had been added to milking and creaming qualities.More cattle had been decorated this year than on any previous occasion; and the breed had so greatly improved, that many of the animals rejected for having less than nineteen points, would have been prize cattle when the Society was formed, so well were their merits now understood. The price of cattle had fully doubled. This led him to call the attention to one important change; The Board of Management had found it difficult at times to get cattle dealers to act as judges; besides, it was a question whether there might not be an interest in keeping back the points. Seven years being a full apprenticeship in any business, it was conceived that many of our farmers having now  given constant attention to the points of their cattle, there were numbers who could act as judges for horned cattle quite as well as other judges for horses; and the event has verified the expectation."
The States grant of £100 was withdrawn in 1842, yet the funds of the Society were sufficient to continue its good work. Inferior cattle had fallen in value, but those decorated by point still fetched high prices. The Board of Management had, however, a new spur to arouse the skill and energy of "our breeders of cattle". French and other foreign cattle having the appearance of the Island breed, had been introduced into England and sold as inferior Alderneys, though they were singularly dissimilar from them in their most valuable property, the milk or rich creaming qualities. With a view of checking this deception, it was proposed to brand all the prize and decorated cattle. Sixty-four head of cattle had gained premiums; and it was noted as worthy of remark that Mr. Fowler (known as an extensive cattle dealer) purchased a young Jersey bull for £9; he afterwards sold it in England, and the purchaser, within a short period, resold the same bull for £84.
The Meeting of the Royal Agricultural Society of England at Southampton in 1844 caused some little stir. The Board gratefully acknowledged the liberal grant of premiums given by the English Society for "Channel Islands or crumpled-horned cattle," and allowed half the sum granted as additional premiums to the owner of the prize animals in each class, calling at the same time specialattention to Rule 57, which permitted no person to receive a prize for a bull, stallion, or boar until the animal had remained in the Island at least one whole season after the prizes were awarded. At the Show "it was observable that a marked difference existed between the Guernsey and Jersey breeds, the latter being altogether of a more delicate and slight form." Capt. Douglas`s first prize cow was sold by Mr. Fowler for £30. Col. Le Couteur obtained £28 for his Jersey prize cow, and Mr. Robin refused £29 for his cow, and Mr- Hume £20 for his heifer. On the same day four ordinary good yearling heifers were sold for £50. It was remarked "by that eminent breeder Mr. Bates of Kirklevington, that the handling, as it is termed by English breeders, was noticed by him to be good in some of our cattle. This quality should be endeavoured to be obtained by careful crossing, as it gives a tendency to fattening and milking qualities." The visit to the Southampton Show not only resulted in good value for cattle, and good opion from that most critical of judges, Mr. Bates, but showed the Jerseymen how their breed was used in England, for the report added:-" It seems pretty well established throughout most dairy farms in England, that one Jersey cow to two or three another breed greatly tends to improve the colour and richness of the butter. Hence it behoves the Jersey farmer to be watchful in improving the colouring and rich properties of their breed."
Attention was called this year to a communication from the bailiff of Guernsey conveying an ordinance of the Court of Guernsey allowing the importation of foreign cattle under certain regulations into that Island. "Such a measure is regarded with extreme jealousy by the farmers here (Jersey), and will require great vigilance on the part of the Guernsey farmers in order to preserve the native race pure." It noticed  the Guernsey Cattle Club for the insurance of Cattle, wherby 8995 Cattle, valued at £72.934 were insured from 1822-1842, as "being an excellent principle so advantageous to the small farmer generally, as to be worthy of adoption." The number of bulls exhibited now began to fall off, which was attributed to the small premium offered, and the "cost of keeping these expensive animals." Cows and heifers continued very numerous. Ninety received premiums or decorations, but the "hind quarter defect is still the principal one to be removed."

Again, in 1845, the entry of bulls at the Show fell off, and it was proposed to suppress some prizes and increase those for bulls. The season, too, had been unfavourable. Potato disease abounded, and some of the animals were so far out of condition that the judges refused to examine them. Indeed, the Committee reported that some were sent in such a "disgracefully dirty state as to be discreditable to their owners and the Show." The failure of crops doubtless had something to do with this; and I was informed by one high authority that he remembered some of the cattle in the country being so thin that it was necessary to help them to rise.

The Scale of Points received some revision about this period, and again in 1849, 1851, and 1858. Each part of the animal was given in detail, and received one point, instead of being put into sections with a number of points, as in the first arrangement. Experience showed, too, the necessity of adding some others, so that in 1858 the number for bulls stood at 33, and cows at 36. A bull having 23 points might be branded, but required 25 to gain a prize; cows required 29 points for at prize, branded with 27; and heifers 26 for a prize, and 24 to be branded. Subsequently, in order to give the judges an opportuni- ty of detailing the merit of these points, the number was increased to 100, as will be shown further on.

The excellence of the animals at the Southampton Show doubtless led the Royal Agricultural Society of England to give more consideration to the breed; and in the "Journal" for 1845 appeared that excellent paper "On the Jersey, misnamed Alderney, Cow." by Col. Le Couteur, who was by birth and family a Jerseyman. He spent his early years in the army; then settled in his native place, where he continued to lead an active life, filling various posts. He seems to have served the Agricultural SOciety in every way, always warmly supporting its interests. He was the author of a work on "The varieties, Properties, and Classification of Wheat," published in 1836 and re-edited in 1872. His opinion on the subject of the Jersey Cow is even better set forth in the Annual Report for 1846 than in the Essay.For he was still then acting as secretary to the Society, which had so prospered under his generous efforts, that in the following year he was unanimously elected President, a position which he afterwards filled in 1853 and again in 1868 and 1869, and he received the honour of knighthood a few years prior to his death. He reviewed the action and effects of the Society in the improvement of cattle in the report for 1846 as follows:- "It can be safely asserted that previous to 1833 no one had thought of improving the breed of cattle by any system or fixed rule. The Jersey cow was excellent, as she has ever been, which  has been attributed to the circumstance of a few farmers having constantly attended to raising stock from cows of the best milking qualities; which attention, prosecuted for a long number of years in a small country like ours, where such superior qualities would soon be known, led to the excellence of milking and butter yielding properties in the race at large. This never could have been attained so generally in Normandy, from whence our breed probably originated, or in any other extended country. Hence in a great measure may be traced the cause why half a century back it is recorded of a Jersey cow that she produced fourteen pounds of butter in a week. This great quantity is not likely to be exceeded; but it has frequently been, and is constantly equalled.

"The animal which then produced that quantity might have been the ugliest that can be described: with a long head, bad horns, ewe necked, hollow backed, cat hammed, walking ill; yet her points of value, the characteristic features of the Jersey breed, were present and redeeming - a lively eye, orange ears, round barrel, depth of chest, short fine deerlike limbs, a capital udder, largely developed milk veins, and a fine tail. No one would have purchased this animal for ornament; her usefulness might have commanded a high price, but the ordinary value of good cows was from £8 to £12. Heifers were sold at £4 or £5. The export at that period was from 700 to 800 yearly." In order to be convinced that the picture is not overdrawn the following report is produced, drawn up by the judges, who were the principal cattle dealers, at the cattle show of the 9th of April, 1834: "the secretary requested the judges to state their opinion in writing as to the general defects observable in the cattle exhibited, in order to direct the attention of the Society to the most faulty points; and they reported their opinion as follows:-
1. That the cattle were very much out of condition.
2. Too slightly formed behind, and cat hammed.
3. Gait unsightly
4. The udder ill formed.
5. The tail coarse and thick.
6. The hoofs large.
7. The head coarse and ill shaped.
8. Many were without that golden or yellow tinge within the ears which denotes a property to produce yellow and rich butter.
9. Some cows and heifers had short bull necks.
10. Some had too much flesh or dewlap under the throat.
11. Some were too heavy in the shoulders.

"And from these principal defects, so clearly and frankly pointed out by the experienced judges, and the information gained from the list of points required for perfection in cattle, your committee may be warranted in expressing an opinion, that by judicious crossing a material and speedy improvement in the race of Jersey cows may be expected; and it should be specially urged on the notice of the Society, that the improvement is not only attainable, and the correction or removal of the faults pointed out to be accomplished; but that by crossing the breed, perfection is most likely to be attained, if proper pains be taken in the selection.
 "The fixing of points and pedigree to cattle have established the fact that a cow may be equally good as beautiful; and on many farms, including that of the writer, two cows may be found with prize points, each producing fourteen pounds of rich butter in May and June. Such cows are now of a value of between £20 and £30, while their heifers will fetch from £12 to £15. From £20 to £24 have been paid for many. Jersey bulls have also risen in value from £10 to £20; in one case £84 was given for one in England. A fact worthy of notice, not generally known, is that the Jersey cow when old and becoming of little value as a milker, will. when fed up, fatten rapidly and produce a greater quantity of butcher`s meat than is supposed; this has been verified in several instances by members of your board. By a reference to the pedigree of the cattle it will be found that the essential character of form is to be traced to the male, the imprinting of certain characteristic features having been observed for three and four generations. There is now a bull at La Moie with the peculiar white ring round the muzzle which belonged to a progenitor six or seven years back; and in another parish may be seen a bull with the peculiar spot on the nose which defaced his forefathers. So will the valuable qualities for milk, or a tendency to fatten, be readily kept up and traced back throughout several generations.

(Signed) "J.Le Couteur."

The report finally concludes:-" The Committee learnt with great regret that some cattle dealers, taking advantage of the late alteration of duties in England, have introduced French cattle into England mixed with those of Jersey, passing off animals almost of the same external appearance for our native breed; while their qualities for milk and butter are astonishingly inferior; so much so as for the fact to be almost incredible. It was proposed to submit a petition to the Legislative Assembly to protect by means of certificates, delivered to the purchasers of each head of cattle on exportation, or any other means to prevent this fraud, which they have every reason to believe is carried on to a considerable extent."
That these French cattle were shipped as Jerseys to England is well known by many still living; it is said they were bought in France for about £5 and sold in England for £15, one man making alone by the trade upwards of £1800.Nearly twenty years later much anxiety was caused by this nefarious system being revived. Even at the present day (1879-80) it is possible to buy animals along the northern coast of Brittany in every way resembling Jerseys, except in the inferiority of their udders, at from £8 to £10; but the fourteen days` quarantine at Southampton required for French cattle, is sufficient precaution against this trade now being carried on. Small black and white Brittany cattle a few years ago were brought over in large numbers by Messrs. Robertson & Co., who have carried on an extensive business in them [*]
[* Messrs Robertson & Co., of Woking, Surrey, write, 1880:-"We have imported some hundred since the year 1864, principally from the department of Morbihan. They have been mostly sent into the Southern Counties from Kent to Devon; several have gone to South Wales, a few to North Wales and the Midland Counties; also to York and Newcastle, indeed as far north as  Perth, as well as to Cork and Limerick in Ireland. The orders of the Privy Council since the unfortunate Franco-Prussian war have, however, greatly retarded our business.]

In 1847 ,"a year of unprecedented distress." correspondence took place with the Royal Agricultural Society of England, soliciting that Society to render every assistance in preventing the imposition of introducing French cattle into England and selling them there as Jersey stock; to such an extent was this trade carried on that the export of cows from the Island in 1846 fell from 1687 to 1214 head the following year. Indeed so frequent became the intercourse between this country and Jersey, and such good feeling prevailed, that the Board presented a yearling bull and heifer,  given by Col. Le Couteur, and a two-year-old heifer of Mr. Thos. Filleul`s, to Her Majesty, " who was graciously pleased to express herself highly gratified with the attention of the Society."
Col. Le Couteur`s paper in the Journal of the Royal Agricultural SOciety of England having attracted considerable attention, the President of the Royal Jersey Society, Mr. Hume, published at letter to the Board of Management, in which he set forth that, in order to prove the excellence of the Jersey cow it was necessary that some individual should put her virtues as a dairy cow to the test. He did so, with the following results of his experience for one year.:-

"On the 1st of July, 1845, three cows were put into the dairy; they were selected with great care; but were cows upon their first calves, and two-years olds, which of course, you all must know, is not the most favourable period for an experiment such as I now mean to lay before you. Due care was, however, taken that they should be fed in what I considered the best manner for produce, and a regular account of that produce was kept, and which is as follows:-

  £ s.d
 580½ lbs. butter at 1s. per lb is...........         29 0
 Cream and milk for supplyof house at 1s per
 18        5 0
 Three calves reared, at £5 each 15         0 0
 Manuare for six month, at 5s per month each
 4        10 0
  £ 66        15 6
 Deduct the expense of keep at £7 each cow    21         0  0
 Total........................        45  15  6
 Which gives to each cow, annually, a profit
 £ 15         5 2

"My object in thus bringing before you this result is in the hope that it may induce some of you to try a similar experiment. My own impression is that the cows of this Island are the best at present known for dairy purposes; but to the feeder, I think, they cannot yield a profit, for this simple reason -that were they ever so well inclined to fatten (which they are not), their frames are too small to carry a sufficient quantity of beef to recompense the feeder; their province is the dairy, into which the cow is brought at the age of twenty months; and if care is taken of her, she will continue there, breeding annually, until she attains the age of sixteen or  seventeen years. In may opinion, it is a matter of little consequence what becomes of her after that time, as she cannot owe anything to her master, whatever he may be indebted to her. I am not quite satisfied with this trial, and shall therefore continue the experiment for another year with the same cows." The result of the trial the following year with the same cows was an additional profit of about 33 per cent.
Few events of interest took place during the next three years. Farmers were urged to avoid the diseased sorts of potatoes, and prices of cattle declined fully twenty per cent in 1849. But the Great Exhibition year of 1851 showed an increase of funds and a larger number of animals exported. The R.A.S.E. was congratulated on the success of its show at Windsor; the Jersey men on the remunerative and highly satisfactory prices obtained for their stock; and the Board was entirely convinced that the encouragement the Society may give to the breeding and rearing of this very valuable breed of Cattle must be a vast source of wealth and prosperity to the agriculturists of the Island. The funds, however, were still falling off, and the Board hoped the States would see the necessity of voting a small sum of money to increase principally the prizes for bulls.
In 1853 American wealth and influence were felt on the Island equally as the English stock sales[*]
[* At the sale of Earl Ducie`s herd of Shorthorn Cattle at Tortworth Court, Aug. 24, 1853, the Americans bought four cows and two bulls for £3255; for one three-year-old cow, Duchess 66th, they paid 700 guineas.]
The report remarks that several animals had been sent to the United States, "where a great and intelligent people are offering every encouragement to all branches of agriculture." The scale of points figured in the tenth volume of the Transactions of the New York Agricultural Society, and the experiment made in America to ascertain the relative merits of the Jersey and Ayrshire cow, resulting in favour of the Jersey, was reported in full Bu direction of the Board, "The Artist who paints the prize cattle in the Herd Book and for the Smithfield Club "drew a picture of a Jersey cow, and "declared it to be the most beautiful form of a cow that he could conceive;" the report significantly adds, "this is to be believed." At the show 26 bulls and 79 cows and heifers were entitled to give their progeny pedigree. The Society was urged to offer the original prize of £10 extra to any breeder who might produce perfection in either male or female animal; and adds:-"Pedigree has led, through a more careful attention in breeding and crossing, to a more certain success, and to the practice of scienfic knowledge."
The exportation to America continued in 1854 and 1855 with undiminished activity; and the Board called special attention to the "impolicy of selling for exportation, the far greater part of the cattle which have obtained prizes, instead of retaining them for breeding purposes. Tempted by the high prices which of late years have been offered, and allured by the prospect of present gain, the farmers seem to have overlooked the eventual detriment, and the lasting injury, which conduct so short sighted, is calculated to inflict on their own interest. It must be evident that the only means of keeping up the reputation, and as a natural consequence the pecuniary value of our native breed, are to prevent its deterioration, to  eradicate its defects, and to perpetuate and increase its excellencies. Such results can only be obtained by selecting the finest and most perfect for reproduction; resolutely rejecting from the breeding stock, every animal in which defects are to be found. "Like produces like" being a maxim which every breeder must ever keep in view. For, as Bakewell, the COllings, and their followers succeeded in perfecting the English breeds, so the Jersey breeders can only hope to obtain a like success by imitating their example. The society has done its best to counteract the baneful effects of the practice of the practice alluded to, and to encourage the retention on the Island of the best cattle for breeding purposes, by giving premiums under certain restrictions for two-year-old heifers and cows from three to five years old; but its scanty funds have not allowed it to interfere in the only manner likely to be efficacious; viz. by offering prizes of sufficient value to caounterbalance the temptation to part with his best stock, which high prices too succesfully present to the unreflecting breeder. The Board appeals to the good sense of the agricultural community; and, though much cannot be expected from the small farmer, yet among agriculturists are men numerous and wealthy; who have both the intelligence to comprehend and the means to carry out, the views put forth in the preceding observations." Attention was again called to.
Rule 55, which provided that "no person is to receive a prize for bull, stallion, or boar until the animal shall have remained on the Island at least one whole season after the prizes were awarded."
Rule 56. "No person shall during April, May, and June allow the service of a prize bull to any other cow, than such as are the property of a member of the Society, on pain of forfeiture of the prize awarded."
Rule 57. "All heifers having had premiums adjudged to them shall be kept on the Island until they have dropped their first calf, or forfeit the premium, if previously sold for exportation."
The Paris Universal Exhibition in 1856 and 1857 also caused some little stir. Premiums amounting to £163 9s. 3d. were offered. And the French government engaged to transport and feed cattle from the ports of debarkation to Paris.
The formation of farmer` clubs in several parishes, St. Peters first, St. Owens following in 1852, was looked upon at first with some degree og jealousy, for it was thought the parent society might suffer thereby. Instead of which, in 1857 (Mr. C.P. Le Cornu then being secretary) one hundred more animals were exhibited than at the last meeting; this increase was attributed to the influence of the clubs, as each parish sent animals for competition, and to a general revival of emulation which was brought into the working of the Society. Five prizes were offered for butter. The reports, which began a few years previously to give the names of the winning animals, now continued them; and the prize list was as follows: - For the best yearling bull 30s., the second best 20s., the best of all in each parish 10s.,; for the best two-year-old bull 50s., the second best 30s.,for the best yearling heifer 12s 6d., the second best 10s., the best of all in each parish 7s 6d.; for the best two-year-old heifer 20s., the second best 10s., the best of all in each parish 10s.; for the best cow three to five  years old 20s, the second best 10s; for the finest bull, 33 points, £10 (1s6d service fee); for the best cow, 36 points, £4.

The Report in 1858 was retrospective. Thirty years ago the cattle were ill-fed, ill-shaped beasts that knew not the taste of mangolds, carrots, or swedes, scarcely that of hay; whose stabling was wretched, and whose winter food consisted chiefly of straw and a few watery turnips. Now they were well fed, improved in quality and symmetry, and well housed. The watery turnip, by careful husbandry, had become firm and rich as cheese; new buildings dotted the Island; and general prosperity dawned on the farmer. But the potatoe crop, once the principal export, had dwindled to a mere nominal item; and early cultivation began In 1859 the first shipment took place on the 18th of April, and extra vessels were put on to take the supply. It was still thought that the chief obstacle to success in the cattle shows was the trifling value of the prizes; and the President gave a £5 cup for the best milch cow three to five years old, which attracted several handsome animals. To show the public value of the cattle, it may be here worth while to mention that at an auction held at the time of the show, in 1859, a six month`s heifer realizes £16, a young cow £30, and a ten-years-old cow £20, all to remain on the Island; but this system of business does not appear to have been repeated.
 The show in 1862 brought 205 exhibits, of which 179 animals were decorated; and the Report, commenting on this great show, goes on to say: -"We may not have been struck by any very decided case of improvement; still it is certain, that indirectly some progress had been effected. To a very considerable extent the business of this Society is limited to the improvement of our insular race of cattle, which in itself is of the highest importance; here, therefore, we wish to impress an observation on those who study he improvement of their stock: -Beauty of symmetry alone cannot ever be the acme of perfection; the latter can only be attained when goodness and beauty are equally combined.
 "It is an established fact that the renown which the Jersey cow enjoys is attributable to the peculiar richness of its milk, as well as to its docility of temper and neatness of form. Now, as this richness is not so marked in some specimens as it is in others; it becomes advisable to make such selections in breeding, as will ensure further amelioration in this most essential and highly important point. To the generality of our farmers it is well known that the principal physical features which denote this superiority, are the orange colour of the ears and skin generally; the smallness and yellow appearance of the horn; fineness of the bone and the mellow texture of the hide; as well as the fully develpoed udder and milkveins - not the fleshy and coarse-boned beast with thick horns and palecoloured ears; these, although possessing every other point, should be entirely discarded, and when introduced at our exhibitions, such animals should be acted against by the judges with great severity, otherwise the reputation of the breed may materially suffer".
 The small number of animals exhibited at the R.A.S.E. show at Battersea was commented on; and, considering the demand for sale there, it was remarked that the trouble and outlay of  sending more animals would have been well repaid. The opening of another local farmers` club caused some comment. "It was feared these local associationens would raw from the Institution a great share of the support which it enjoys; but so far it has proved to the contrary. They diffuse much practical knowledge among farmers; so that their formation must be welcomed rather than otherwise.
 "Among the tenant farmers we are struck with the increasing number of French people who settle here -apparently, at first, with very little means at their command; nevertheless, it is equally surprising to see what they achieve, simply by avoiding any habits tending to luxury, and by devoting their whole attention and moments strictly to their business." Many of these eventually became breeders of good animals.
 It was urged in 1863 that more members should join the SOciety. ALthough it had existed thirty years, and originated so much good, there were many still indifferent to its existence, whilst others had left the Society when the opportunities of prize-gaining were less favourable to them.
 From the development of trade and facilities of transport, increased competition was expected from "our French neighbours", who with equal advantage of soil and climate, will undoubtedly compete for the entire supply of aou wants. French provisions had gained considerably, not because of any falling off in the culture of vegetables in Jersey, but because of the value of land and price labour in Normandy and Brittany being considerably below the insular standard. It may be safely said that, with the exception of cattle (which have found a ready sale at the established rates), all products of the farm have sold considerably lower than formerly.
 The introduction of French cattle was again brought under the notice of the Members. Some considered the introduction of them desirable on the ground of benefiting trade. The Committee, however, believed that the Island would derive little benefit therefrom. And it was thought probable that fraud would be practised and result in a serious loss. Others entertained a notion that crossing our cattle, with other varieties, would improve the present breed.. In contradiction to this, the judges`recommendation at the Meeting of the R.A.S.E. at Worcester was cited. This was, that, in future, the twoChannel Islands stocks should form separate classes, as the breeds of Jersey and Guernsey were becoming much sought after and appreciated; and it was further recommended to the Council of the R.A.S.E. (by a Petition from mr. Dumbrell), signed by the President, Secretary, and other officers of the Jersey Society) that the cattle, being of pure breed and adapted for a particular purpose, could not be fairly judged in a mixed class. Mr. Fisher Hobbs, of Boxted Lodge, Essex, was also of this opinion, and considered that, with fair play, nothing could exeel the breed. Mr. Dumbrell of Ditchling, also wrote a letter, deprecating the crossing of the breed, which was known for its extreme richness of milk; he stated that he had tried crosses with Ayrshires and Runts (Welsh cattle); and though by certainly thus gained a more fleshy animal and a larger produce of milk, yet the quality of the milk was sadly deteriorated. He further considered the breeds were "more extensively known and better appreciated in England than ever they were before; and  that, being recognised by the Royal Agricultural Society of England, they will become more valuable every day."
 An interchange of hospitality took place between the societies of Jersey and Guernsey. The Jersey deputation was much struck with the general order and well-to-do appearance of the farms in Guernsey, and also with thirty oxen remarkable for size, symmetry, and capability for fattening. A careful selection of seeds was recommended. Interchange of judges was suggested, and warmly approved; and it was remarked how widely the systems of husbandry practised in these islands differed from each other.
 Much excitement arose concerning a cargo of French heifers which were brought into the harbour and landed on the quay, then reshipped to England as cattle from Jersey. Great inquiry was made, and the debate on it was adjourned for a week. It was found the law had been violated, and steps were taken, by branding the cattle and otherwise, to prevent the repetition of such proceedings.
 The new law on the introduction of foreign cattle came into operation in 1864. It was not considered likely to effect any downward tendency in the market price of beef; but it was feared that the quality of the supply would fall off. On the whole, it was thought satisfactory to the agricultural community; as, owing to its stringent nature, all material injury to their interests would be prevented.
 A new trouble arose in an active trade in butter between St. Malo and England viâ Jersey. It appeared that, in many instances, this French butter had been introduced into the mother country as Jersey produce, the barrels being stamped "prime Jersey butter". It is probable that this is still practised; for Jersey butter continue to be quoted in the London Market, although the quantity sent from the Island rarely reaches the regular London markets, but is sold to private dealers and even to them in small quantities. *[The Customs returns for the year 1879 showed 1655 cwts of butter were exported against 1874 cwts in 1878 and 1934 cwts. in 1877]
 The funds of the SOciety were at a low ebb; and it was remarked that, unless supplies increased, a diminution in the prize list must follow. This was felt to be very different to the Royal Agricultural Society of England, who had offered nine prizes for Channel Islands cattle, six of which were won with Mr. Dumbrell`s Jerseys at Newcastle-upon-tyne.
 In 1865 the business of the SOciety was at last carried on by two departments - the Agricultural and the Horticultural, with beneficial results. The deficit of the last year, £22 17s 1d was made up, and a favourable balance left of £1 11s 1½d. The exhibition was sufficient to convince any one of the great improvement which was steadily taking place in the catlle, for 126 animals were exhibited and only two were held to be unworthy of the Society`s ribbon
 Mr. Dent Dent`s report of the R.A.S.E. show at Plymouth was quoted. This adcocated separating the classes for Jerseys and Guernsys, and his views were confirmed by the judges. They reported that the classes were well filled, and that generally the animals displayed a marked improvement on those shown on former occasions. Severe competition took place among the cows and heifers, arising out of the great improvement made by the Channel Islanders in combining beauty of form with that quality  for which the breeds are so remarkable, viz. richness of dairy produce. It was found difficult to award prizes in mixed classes. Some distinction was suggested in the classification, so as to encourage separate competition for each breed. Mr. Dent added that he hoped the Council would follow suggestion, as the Americans were buying so freely. Prices were consequently raised. He took the occasion to protest against the neglect of milking properties by the English breeders of fashinable stock.
 The committee also impressed on Jersey breeders greater attention being paid to the milk-producing properties of the cow, and urged that they should persevere in weeding out every animal which which might have the least tendency to deficiency in quantity of milk, but even more to any want of richness of milk; and they urged the jdges to specially examine these points at shows
 The export trade was very brisk during the first six months of the year, but during the last six, little business was done. This was owing to the fearful calamity of the cattle plague which had befallen the agriculturists of England. The committe felt thankful that the visitation had not come on the Island. The local authorities had done their utmost to guard against the introduction of this terrible visitant.
 The year 1866 will always be memorable as that in which the Jersey Herd Book was started. The necessity and object of this work will be found fully set forth later on. Members were congratulated on the gradual disappearance of the cattle plague, and on the renewal of the export trade. The shows of the year were good; 42 bulls and 182 cows were approved, and the bulls were noticed as being above the average in size, condition, and symmetry. Potatoes, too, yielded well this season, and made a higher value than had been the case for many years.
 New members and promises of support came during 1867, so that finances improved, and remunerative prices were obtained for all produce. Mr. Le Bas shipped 2041 head of cattle valuede at £29.000. Farmers were invited to cooperate in carrying out the principles of the Herd Book; and the pedigree points would be discontinued in the future scale. The effect of careful breeding was shown to the members by the grand result of Mr. Dauncey`s sale in England, when 90 animals realized £3737 9s 6d. At the show the first prize two-year-old heifer was sold for £38, and the first prize yearling bull for £42. Attention was against called to the export of butter from France, and farmers were reminded that unless more attention was paid to the making of it, they would lose the advantage derived from the English markets; for first-class Jersey butter commanded prices in London equal to the best English made. The favourable balance of £20 19s 9½d led to a hope that in 1868 higher prizes might be offered.
 Several Americans visited the Island in 1868. The first prize yearling bull was sold to them for £45, and they paid much attention to pedigree stock and registered cattle. Exhibitors were once more warned of the evil practice of exporting prize cattle, particularly the bulls, for the sake of a liberal sum. They were again assured they would defeat, by such a course, the objects of the Society to improve the breed. The news of the liberal prizes offered by the R.A.S.E. at Leicester  was received with pleasure. The Society seemed to view much satisfaction the success of their cattle, as dairy stock, both in England and America, and they attributed it, in a large measure, to the improvement effected in the breed in the Island. The encouragement given in England to the growth of beef, whilst overlooking to a great extent the milk and butter qualities, was quoted as a wholesome warning. Again were their members urged never to sacrifice rich milking qualities to shape or appearance.
 The exhibition in 1879 was one of the best and most successful for the sale of stock exhibited. The first  prize two-year old heifer realized £60, two parochial prize heifers £50 each, two heifers £46 each, three cows £40 each, eight heifers £30 each. Altogether 31 animals were bought for exportation to America at £995. The funds were still inadequate to retain on the Island the prize bulls by liberal premiums; but it was resolved to offer prizes for the best yearling bull and yearling heifer approved and registered in the Herd Book.
 Fifty new members came in during 1871, and £102 was offered in prizes. This was the largest sum since the States discontinued their grant. The bad season caused hay to reach £10 per ton and straw £7. It was with pleasure that the Society saw the high prices given for pedigree stock, and that the £10 and £5 prizes - to retain the yearling bulls on the Island - had both been claimed. Mr. C.P. Le Cornu (who had been elected President) was congratulated on the success of his efforts in obtaining separate classes at the R.A.S. E. shows for Guernsey and Jersey cattle.The states granted this year £50 solely in premiums for bulls; a restriction which was gladly enforced. At the Channel Islands Show, held in Jersey, 274 Jerseys and Guernseys were exhibited, and £ 150 awarded in prizes. Mr. Le Cornu sold Blue Bell, a two-year-old heifer, to go to New York, U.S.A., for 100 guineas, the highest price up to that time realized on the Island. The Board expressed its gratification at the value set on the prize stock of the Island for breeding purposes a proof in their opinion, of the confidence felt in the awards of the Judges. The Board wished, however, to impress on farmers the necessity of selecting bulls only from the best and richest milkers.
 Another great show was held on the 12th june, 1872. This was the most striking event of that year. 204 females, 32 bulls, 16 horses and 11 piges were exhibited. Foreseeing evil from the taste of the American and English buyers for whole coloured animals, the Committe urged the necessity of greater attention being paid to rich butter and milking qualities than to the mere colour of the animal.                                                              Next

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