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What is the Titcomb Collection?

09/02/2008 6:00 PM | Anonymous

Who was Mrs. Gladys S. Titcomb and what is in the collection she donated to the USKBTC?
In an ad in the 1964 USKBTC Handbook, Mrs.Gladys S. Titcomb wrote, “Owned Kerries since 1937, registered in the AKC in 1943 and was a member of the USKBTC since 1941.” An ad she had in the 1968 USKBTC Handbook listed some of the Kerry she had owned or bred. Some of their names follow.
Ch. Hilarious of Gayterry, (Her foundation matron, a double daughter of Rackety Packety.)
C. Dabster of Delwin
Ch. Deeds Show Off
Ch. Blucote Bawcock
Int. Ch. Breeze’s Blan of Homeplace
Ch. Embargo’s First Lady
Ch. Clonkilty Morning Star
Int. Ch. Blucote Breeding Tells
Ch. Carnageal Shamrock
Ch. Orcheem of Maeveen
Ch. Blucote Brocade C.D.
Ch. Blucote Bonanza
Ch. Blucote’s Show Off and many, many more.

Take a look at the Kerry Pedigree Database on the USKBTC website to see if you have any of her dogs in your pedigree. Look under her kennel name of Blucote or some of the other’s mentioned above.
In the 1954 Dog World Annual, the following information was included:
She was a Governor of the USKBTC, serving as Vice President for eight years, and was Governor of the KBTC of New England and was an Honorary Life Member of the KBTC of England. Her AKC registered kennel name was “Blucote Kennels.”

A Blueprints article in October of 1967 explains her “Kerryana” collection and her donation to the USKBTC. (This is the collection that is now being scanned and saved on CDs in order to preserve the original material.) The article is reprinted below in its entirety, exactly as it appeared in the 1967 edition of Blueprints. There is no specific author of the article listed.

Gladys Titcomb Donates Her Kerryana to the U.S.K.B.T.C.

If it were early American it would be called Americana. The word usually covers all types of early materials, pictures and records. So we coin the word – “Kerryana” in the hopes of finding a description for Gladys’ endeavors. However, words never will suffice for it.

Since 1923 Gladys has kept personal scrapbooks, as anyone might, without an idea of them becoming historically important. In them she put other than Kerryana. As time passed she showed her books to visitors who were fascinated to see the early pages of English and American dog magazines, ads from catalogues and magazines, all illustrating dogs and kennels that are now legend. The extra material in Gladys’ books add flavor of the times. There are pictures of the President of the U.S.A. as he changed, a new picture can be found. There were letters telling of the cancelation of a show due to World War II. These are fun to fall upon amongst the Kerry material. Gladys does want any of you who see her books to understand that she had not originally prepared them as public display.

In addition to the scrapbooks she has made an index of their contents. Seeing is believing. There is no way to describe the effort that went into the index. Each dog is listed by name and the place where the picture appears is noted by page and scrapbook number. There are 1,113 pictures of dogs. Of 1,113 dog, that is.

Gladys had a complete file of Blueprints, of the AKC Gazette columns and a cook of catalogue pages from the bigger shows. Also indexed are the pictures pf the English and American Kerry Handbooks. However, Gladys needs the handbooks for reference.

There are some hard cover books which are either written about Kerries or Terriers and which are long out of print. The three volume Dog Encyclopedia of Hutchinson is a rare collector’s item. Books by A. Croxton Smith, Violet Handy and more. One on Badger Digging.

All this Gladys has donated under the title “The Gladys S. Titcomb Collection.” Ideally we should have a small museum building. Until that day we plan to offer the sturdier part of the collection to the various members of the Committee to exhibit to those interested. It would be desirable to construct some traveling boxes into which the materials might be placed and from which it could be displayed or reshipped without damage. Details remain to be worked out. In the meantime, the material is housed in a dry room of fairly constant temperature at the home of the Chairman of the Committee which Gladys chose, Mrs. Walter L. Fleisher, Jr. Other members she chose are Mrs. Edith Izant, Major Frances M. Reynolds, Mrs. Fern Rogers and Miss Audree Weiland, all of who have agreed to serve. The Board of Governors of the USKBTC will have the right to replace any committee member should for any reason is no longer able to serve.

The best words written are those of Gladys herself: “ May if give all members and Kerry Blue Terrier lovers as much pleasure as it gave me to trace the breed from the very early days up to the present time. It is an education in the progress the breed has made from a “jack-of-all-trades” to the beautiful terrier who can hold his own in the show ring against any other terrier breed.”


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