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AKD 1.22

Irish Setter Club of America collection


7 linear ft in 17 boxes

Processed by Norma Rosado-Blake, 2009; Additions and edits by Brynn White, 2016.



The Irish Setter Club of America collection chronicles one of the AKC’s oldest clubs, consisting of meeting minutes and other administrative documents dating as far back as 1918; a photograph collection of prominent champions, kennels, and events; applications for the Irish Setter Genetic Registry; and audiovisual footage of 21st-century national specialties.


The collection is arranged into four groups based on format and/or content:

  1. Club Administration, 1918-1933
  2. Dog Shows, 2003-2015
  3. Lucy Jane Myers photograph collection, 1860-1966
  4. Irish Setter Genetic registry, 1979-1993

Club History

As one of the oldest parent clubs, the Irish Setter Club of America has had a steadfast devotion to this magnificent breeds. Formed in 1891 by 21 members, some prominent members included William H. Child, the AKC’s third President and Dr. N. Rowe, editor of the American Field. The first group of executive officers included the following: William H. Child, president, Dr. N. Rowe, vice-president; Dr. Gwilym G. Davis, secretary-treasurer.

Originally bred as a hunting dog, it was appropriate that the ISCA conduct a field trial as their first event. Held in High Point, North Carolina on 23 Nov. 1891, the club offered a $350 cash prize to the winner- a substantial amount in those days. A cash prize by the club was an indication of their desire to promote interest in the breed as well as a way to entice breeds to produce sound and pure bloodlines. This strategy worked — by the 1920s the Irish Setter bench shows saw a total number of entries increase to the 400 to 600 range. conformation and field show on 26 August 1927. Their second one was held the following year.

The club began producing their newsletter, News, starting in 1945 which eventually became the award winning periodical Memo to Members. The primary aim of the News was informative–it contained club activities, owner brags and articles on various topics. Since then the periodical has grown in scope and has garnered awards from the Dog Writers of America organization.

A milestone in the club’s history occurred with their publication of The Irish Setter Champions & Obedience Title Holder. It was a significant step for the international community of the Irish Setter since it was the first publication of its kind.

A testament to the club’s commitment to the breed, the club founded the Irish Setter Club of America Foundation — a non-profit organization dedicated to provide education and research support for the breed. Today the foundation provides extensive and lucrative amount of money to organizations interested in grant funded studies of health related issues. Additionally, the club has made strides in providing information material to members with the establishment of the library in 1974.

With such a long and prolific history the ISCA is a pillar of parent clubs. Commendable acts and devotion to the purity of the breed make the ISCA a “poster child” for parent clubs.

Scope and Content

Club administration includes meeting minutes dating from 1913 to 1993. They document annual meetings and gatherings of the Board of Directors; some minutes files also include related correspondence, memos, membership directories, proposals, statistics, and other reports. Further ISCA materials include standard revisions documentation, treasurers reports and other financial records, and correspondence relating to the club’s financial problems circa 1980 as well as the re-evaluation of procedures and policies in regards to the National Futurity and Gun Dog Classic shows.

The dog show materials contain digital video discs with audiovisual footage of National Specialties from 2003 to 2005, and 2010 to 2015. Inserts feature photocopies of competitor listings from the catalog.

The Lucy Jane Myers collection of photographs (1860-1966) are predominently American and Canadian win shots from the 1940s to 1960s, including many well-known and dual champions in conformation and in the field. Also present are historical photographs used in the breed book This is the Irish Setter by William Thompson, artwork, field shots, candids from shows and a dog-attended premiere of the film Big Red (1962) organized by the ISC of Milwaukee, and photos from the kennels Verbu (labelled VER-01 to VER-13), Tyronne Farm (TYR-01 to TYR-10), Runwild (RUN-01 to RUN-05), Thenderin (THE-01 to THE-15), and Tirvelda (TRI-01 to TRI-09).

The Irish Setter Genetic Registry contains applications for probable genetic non-carrier status for Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA). The files include all application requirements: a test-mating service certificate, test-litter examination form, and an opthalmic examination form. Within these can be found litter and breeding information, correspondence from veterinarians, and more.


The photographs were assembled by fancier Lucy Jane Meyers and donated to the Irish Setter Club of America. The entire collection was donated to the AKC Library & Archives by Maureen A. Day (Historian) on the behalf of the Irish Setter Club of America, in 2009, with further additions contributed by Day in 2016.


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