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  • Writer's pictureTim Hackworth

Story of Little Rowdy VI

The sire of the famous FC. Indian Hills Majer was a dog named Little Rowdy VI. Majer was Better Beagling Magazine’s Sire of the Year in 1989, and his bloodline is still prized by many. My own Woodpont Beagles today have numerous crosses of Majer and Rowdy behind them.

Larry Carter (Valar Beagles) and John New (New City Beagles) were responsible for using a line of show beagles called "Showfield" to produce some really special dual purpose beagles during the late 1970s and early 1980s period. From the Showfield crosses, Larry was breeder of CH. Valar's Gruesome Grizz (by CH. Showfield Bobby), and John was breeder of FC. New City Cruiser (by CH. Rob-Ida's Jeorge With A J) and FC. Indian Hills Majer and FC. New City Pearl (littermates by Little Rowdy VI).

I first saw Little Rowdy VI at Larry's kennel in the early 1980s. By then, the old dog was worn down from what must have been a rough life, but you could still see evidence of what had been a beautiful hound, especially in his head, ears, etc. I remember watching him run rabbits with other hounds in Larry's enclosure, but mostly he just followed them, boo-hooing around, without any remaining ability to keep up or contribute. Too bad we didn't know him as a young hound. I took the photo above of Rowdy with Larry posing him for me. Note the black and tan coloring, so dominant in my hounds today.

Here is the rest of my story of Little Rowdy VI, written several years ago:

On Sept 17, 1970, a litter of beagle puppies was born at the home of Eugene Wells in Xenia, Ohio. The sire of the litter was Playfair Cadet, who was a show-bred dog from the Dayton area, and the dam was Eugene’s favorite gunning hound, Well’s Vickey. Vickey was mostly old cottontail bloodlines, with just a small bit of similar show blood about 4 generations back. Cadet came from a line called “Showfield”, owned by a man named Wade from Dayton. By the time Cadet came along, Mr. Wade was nearing the end of his life. Other “Showfield” bred hounds included Ch. Rob-Ida’s Jeorge With A J, who holds the distinction of being the last show champion to sire a field champion (FC. New City Cruiser), and Ch. Showfield Bobby, who produced Larry Carter’s Ch. Valar’s Gruesome Grizz. There was still a lot of "hunt" in those show dogs from the 1960s, and the old “Showfield” line had more than its share.

In this half-show, half-field litter was a black and tan male that became Little Rowdy VI. Until 1974, Rowdy was used as a personal hunting dog, and was said to be a good one. But Rowdy’s life changed dramatically on April 4, 1974, as did so much of the town of Xenia. An F5 tornado (the most intense tornado, reaching speeds of over 261 miles per hour) hit the town that afternoon. On the Internet, you can find many old photos of the unbelievable destruction. As a result of the damage to his owner’s home, Rowdy changed owners and became a pet, spending the next several years chained to a backyard dog house.

About 1980, Larry Carter, one of the founders of the Great Miami Gundog Beagle Club of Middletown, Ohio, was able to acquire Rowdy. Larry was very interested in dual-purpose beagles at the time, as were several others in those early days prior to the formation of the Midwest Gundog Association. Through the Great Miami Club, he had met Eugene Wells and Raymond Walters, Eugene’s uncle. Both were club members and very active in the early trials. Larry’s earliest field lines were mostly FC. Pleasant Run Diplomat and Mercer County breeding, and he had acquired a bit of Showfield blood to cross on them.

There were just 2 litters sired by Little Rowdy VI after Larry acquired him. Rowdy was already past 10 years old by then, and his ability to sire puppies was nearly gone. The first cross to Rowdy was when Larry bred his great Valar’s Hammering Sue to him, producing Valar’s Mrs Sniff. Mrs. Sniff was later bred to Ch. Rob-Ida’s Jeorge With A J to produce Woodpont Joker, who became the foundation sire for our Woodpont Beagles. As mentioned earlier, Jeorge was also the sire of FC. New City Cruiser.

Rowdy’s second litter was the most famous. John New bred his gundog field and show winning New City Crystal to Rowdy, producing FC. Indian Hills Majer, New City Wannamaker, and FC. New City Pearl. John selected Pearl to carry on his breeding program, and sold Majer to R.B. Sester, who raised and campaigned him in the early AKC gundog trials. Majer, Wannamaker, and Pearl were all beautiful hounds, and just as likely to win a show as the field class.

FC. New City Pearl - a great example of ability and type in one hound, and a credit to her breeder, John New.

Posed by Mr. New.

I know of no show beagle kennels active today that still carry the Showfield and Playfair blood, but through the New City, Valar, Indian Hills and Woodpont bloodlines, the old Showfield lines have survived. It was only through the efforts of Larry Carter, Raymond Walters and John New that these lines were saved from being lost forever. Consider yourself fortunate if you have some of this in your kennel today.

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