Rosecomb Breed History

One of the oldest breeds of bantam known, it is thought that the first Rosecombs descended from some of the earliest bantams recognized in the world. The exact time and origin of the breed however is somewhat shrouded in mystery. This can be attributed to the breed dating back farther than any poultry literature written on the subject. Many claim that it originated in England, however this issue today is under much debate. Breeders have claimed such diverse birthplaces as Java, Holland, Africa and Hamburg, although the later is impossible as this little bird has been around longer than the country of Hamburg has been in existence. Indeed in America the breed was referred to for many years as African bantams. One documented show in which they were entitled as such was the First Boston Show in 1849. This trend continued up until 1904 where both white and black Rosecombs were shown at the St. Louis World Fair as Africans.

The earliest documented literature on the breed dates back to 1483. A man named John Buckton owned the Angel Inn in Grantham where he raised black Rosecomb bantams. It was from his father that he first inherited the birds indicating that the breed must have been in existence for a number of years prior to 1483. His birds were described as having very prominent combs and large white lobes, two of the important characteristics of the breed today. It was said that King Richard the Third, who retained rooms at the Inn, took a fancy to the birds which made them very popular with the English gentry.

Whatever the ancestry, the Rosecomb's great popularity and modern day perfection of type can only be accredited to the hard work and dedication of the English and Dutch fanciers. It was from them that the modern day Rosecomb emerged.

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