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AKD 3.15

1930 – 2003

715 linear feet in 22 boxes

Collection processed by Ellen E. Schmidt; edits and additions made by Brynn White, 2016



The Newfoundland Club of America collection thoroughly documents the club’s activities since its founding in the 1930s, through meeting minutes, reports, and correspondence files of some of its most prominent members and officers over the years: Nell Ayers, Kitty Drury, and Larry Lerner. Also present is a complete run of its publication “Newt Tide,” photographs of prominent dogs dating back to the 1920s, a large assemblage of catalogs for National Specialties as well as regional shows and water trials, titleholder lists, and scrapbooks of Ayre’s Seaward Kennels and Waseeka Kennel, the first large kennel devoted to the breed in America.


The collection is arranged into 5 series based on format and/or content:

  1. Club Administration, 1930-2000
  2. Publications and Printed Matter, 1930-2000
  3. Dog Shows, 1967-2007
  4. Breeding and Performance History, 1937-1989
  5. Nell Ayers and Waseeka Kennels scrapbooks, c. 1915-1991


The Club

Although the popular Newfoundland was recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1886, it was not until the 20th century that Newfoundland fanciers made efforts to form official breed clubs. The first Newfoundland Club of America was recognized by the AKC May 19, 1914, with officers E.J. Lame, president; R.B. Fritsch, vice president; and C.R. Wood, secretary/treasurer and delegate to the AKC. The club, however, was a small local group, and shortly after the death of Mr. Woods, it collapsed; in February of 1928 this first NCA’s membership with the AKC was canceled for failure to pay dues.

Another early club, the North American Newfoundland Club, was established sometime between 1922 and 1924 and never sought to gain AKC recognition. Under officers Dr. M.J. Fenton, president; Hon. Harold Macpherson, vice president; D.C. Williams, vice president, and Edwin H. Morrison, secretary/treasurer, the NANC was slightly more active than the small NCA had been. The club drew up its own standard of the Newfoundland and in 1929 staged a water trial. This organization also dissolved for unknown reasons, and most of its members attached themselves to the new NCA.

The third time was the charm for a national Newfoundland organization. On February 21, 1930, another Newfoundland Club of America was founded, with officers Quentin Twachman, president; Vivian Moultan, vice president, Harold Ingham, treasurer; and Miss Elizabeth Loring, secretary. This was the beginning of the club that still thrives today, and it was quickly accepted for AKC inclusion in May 1930.

By 1931 the club had proposed a standard for the Newfoundland dog — an adaptation of the English standard. In 1933 the club held its first National Specialty in conjunction with the Morris and Essex Kennel Club. After a short pause in growth during WWII, the club picked back up, hosting the first post-war National Specialty in 1948. Under the club’s new president, Miss Elizabeth Loring, up and coming member Kitty Drury was appointed chair of a committee to revise the Constitutions and Byaws. The revisions were accepted in 1950.

The NCA continued to grow in the 1960s. In 1964 Kitty Drury was elected club president. In 1967 the NCA held its first independent National Specialty, an event that had manifested under the efforts of the then-president Rev. Robert Curry.

In 1970 the NCA began rewriting the Standard for the Newfoundland for the first time since its acceptance in 1931. Also in 1970, the club began publishing its official newsletter, “Newf Tide,” which is still being published. In 1973, the NCA held its first official Water Test, designed to test the water rescue talents of its “hero dog” breed.

The club continued to grow through the 1980s and 1990s. In 1985 the NCA held its first official Draft Test, and in 1984 the breed was honored when Ch. Seaward’s Blackbeard won Best in Show at Westminster under judge Kitty Drury. In 1990 the standard was again rewritten, and this version is the one maintained by the club today.

The Breed

When European explorers began to rediscover the large Canadian island of Newfoundland in the late 17th century, they found there a breed of large, Mastiff-like black dogs “with size and strength to perform the task required of him.” How exactly this native breed developed is a highly debated mystery, but whatever its origins, it did not begin to resemble the breed known today as the Newfoundland until after the late 1700s. Between 1500 and 1700, the native breed was frequently crossed with newly arriving European breeds. Contributors to the emerging Newfoundland likely included Mastiffs and very large brown-and-white “estate dogs,” Portuguese Water Dogs, Collie-types, and perhaps even spaniels. By 1700, a unique breed of dog populated the island: It was large, heavy coated and heavy headed, with the strength and skill to be used as a draft animal, and a talent in water that made it a useful companion to the island’s fisherman. A black-and-white variety of the dog was common on the main island, while a mostly black variety inhabited the island’s outlying provinces.

In 1775, this native breed was officially named by English naval captain George Cartwright after the island of its origin. Very soon afterward, interest in the Newfoundland encouraged serious exportation of the dogs. Beginning around 1780, huge numbers of Newfoundlands were exported to England and the rest of Europe, seriously depleting their numbers on the island. Maintaining the breed fell to England and Europe, and it was in England particularly that the modern Newfoundland claims its creation. It was there that interested breeders began to refine the native breed into a dog that within a few years was recognized as a purebred. The Birmingham “National” dog show in 1860 boasted six specimens of the breed; two years later, entries of Newfoundlands had soared to 41, showing England’s booming interest in the large dogs. The animal artist Sir Edwin Landseer favored the black-and-white variety of Newfoundlands so much that the color type was soon called and is still known today as Landseer. At the same time, Scottish author James Barrie put the Newfoundland in the heart of his popular work Peter Pan in the character of the canine nurse, Nana. Such artistic attention, as well of the notoriety of Newfoundland show winners such as S. Atkin’s Cato and Howard Mapplebeck’s Leo, encouraged so much growth in the popularity of Newfoundlands during this era that they soon became iconic of the English Victorian family.

While in England the Newfoundland was being built into the breed recognized today, the dog was experiencing similar popularity in the United States. As in England, the Newfoundland reached an apex of popularity in America in the late 19th century. The breed was first recognized by the AKC in 1886, and by then it was considered a premier family dog.

However, by 1918 and the close of the World War I, the Newfoundland in America was in a sorry state. War-time rationing had taken a serious toll on the breed’s numbers, but rescue came from Miss Elizabeth Loring, who stormed the show ring with Ch. Seafarer, an imported English dog and son of the great English champion Ch. Siki. Over the next few years, Loring imported other Siki sons, such as Ch. Harlingen Neptune of Waseeka, which were used as foundation stock for her Waseeka Kennels. Other Newfoundland fanciers imported more Siki stock. Almost all American champions can trace their lineage to these dogs.

Elizabeth Loring’s Waseeka Kennel was the first large Newfoundland kennel in the United States, but she was soon joined in her ground-breaking breeding efforts. Maynard and Kitty Drury’s Dryad Kennels, and Major and Bea Godsol’s Coastwise Kennels were also established in the early 1930s. With Waseeka, these three kennels are considered the foundation kennels for the American Newfoundland. Another great kennel arose in the following years: Elinor Ayers-Jameson and Jack Cameron joined together to found Camayer Kennels with the intentions of reestablishing the Landseer type of Newfoundland. Their efforts brought back declining Landseer numbers, and using Ch. Oquaga’s Sea Pirate, or “Pat” — a superb black — they also enhanced the type of the black-and-white variety. Mrs. Ayers-Jameson later changed the kennel name to Seaward. Under her daughter Nell Ayers, Seaward would produce some of the 20th century’s greatest Newfoundlands, including Ch. Seaward’s Blackbeard or “Adam,” the most winning Newf of his time and the first of the breed to claim Best in Show at Westminster in 1984. In more recent years, the increasingly popular Newfoundland again demanded the public’s eye when Ch. Darbydale’s All Rise Pouch Cove or “Josh” became the second Newf to gain the Westminster BIS in 2004.

Scope and Content

Club administration includes meeting minutes from annual and specialty meetings between 1950 and 1977; committee and individual reports presented to the club between 1947 and 1978; membership lists; distribution materials; and correspondence and business records. In addition to general correspondence arranged chronologically from the 1930s through 1990s, are committee correspondence, such as the Breeder’s List committee, and the personal files of three influential club figures:

The Elinor “Nell” Ayers materials include the private and club correspondences received and sent by Nell Ayers during her years as the NCA secretary and president (1976-1983).

The files of Dryad Kennels co-founder Katherine “Kitty” Drury, dating back to her NCA acceptance in 1932 through her many committee and officer duties (including president), contain some of the club’s oldest preserved materials. Items of particular interest include the original handwritten minutes from the first 20 years of the club and translations of letters from Mrs. Drury’s Newfoundland contacts in Switzerland and Germany.

Ingoing and outgoing mail of Dr. Lawrence “Larry” Lerner dates from 1976 to 1977, his tenure as NCA president.

Publications and printed matter includes a nearly complete run and index of Newf Tide, the quarterly publication of the club beginning in 1970, as well as a variety of articles and news clippings (many photocopied) concerning Newfoundlands or dog-related writing. Newf Tide includes conformation results, specialty results, and articles of general interest on topics such as health and history.

The dog shows materials consist of catalogs for National and Regional Specialties between 1967 and 2007, and an extensive assemblage of specialty conformation show and water test catalogs from the 1970s through 1990s, all identified in the collection inventory. Win shots are present for the 1983, 1991, and 1992 specialties.

The breeding and performance history materials contain AKC stud book pages through 1949, assembled lists of Newfoundland title holders in numerous categories, Newfie kennels, and the manuscripts of the three-volume Newf of Distinction, which includes further title lists and histories, pedigrees, records, certificates, and more of the famous Irwindyl Kennels.

The photographs, given to the NCA by club members, feature a wide collection of Newfoundlands and date as early as the 1920s. The bulk picture famous winning Newfoundlands, shown in candid shots and show poses. About half of the images are accompanied by captions, with identified dogs noted in the inventory.

The four scrapbooks were assembled by Nell Ayers of Seaward Kennels and Waseeka Kennels, two legendary breeders of Newfoundlands who donated the materials to the NCA. Two of the Ayres scrapbooks contain photographs, pedigrees, and registration forms dating back to the founding of Seaward in 1944 by her mother Elinore Ayers-Jameson; the other charts the career of Ch. Seaward’s Blackbeard or “Adam,” as of the 1980s the most winning Newfoundland of his time, through newspaper clippings. The final scrapbook contains photocopied articles dating c.1915 to 1932 that refer to Waseeka dogs or Newfoundlands in general, as well as photographs of Waseeka, the first large Newfoundland kennel in America, circa 1940.


Constitutions and Bylaws

Box 1
FF 1 “Bylaws”
FF 2 Print of Revision
“Bylaws” (2 copies)


FF 3 1950
FF 4 1951
FF 5 1952
FF 6 1953
FF 7 1954
FF 8 1955
FF 9 1956
FF 10 1957-1958
FF 11 1962-1963
FF 12 1964
FF 13 1965
FF 14 1970-1971
FF 15 1971-1972
FF 16 1972; 1974
FF 17 1974
FF 18 1976
FF 19 1977
Oversize 1 1951


FF 20 1947; 1948; 1951
FF 21 1949
FF 22 1950
FF 23 1952
FF 24 1955
FF 25 1956
FF 26 1956-1958
FF 27 1961-1963
FF 28 1964
FF 29 1965
FF 30 1970-1971
FF 31 1971-1972
FF 32 1971; 1973
FF 33 1973-1975; 1978
FF 34 1975-1976
FF 35 1976
Oversize 1 1964

Correspondences and Records


Box 2
FF 1 Breeder’s List 1976
FF 2 Breeder’s List 1976
FF 3 Breeder’s List 1976-1977
FF 4 Breeder’s List 1976-1977
FF 5 Breeder’s List 1976-1977
FF 6 Breeder’s List 1976-1977
FF 7 Breeder’s List 1983-1990
FF 8 Code of Ethics and Grievances 1976-1977
FF 9 Constitution and Bylaws 1976-1977
FF 10 Breed Standard 1975-1976

Ayers, Nell

Box 3
FF 1 1976-1977
FF 2 Article on Seaward Kennels; Standard Committee comments, 1977
FF 3 1976-1982
FF 4 1976-1982
FF 5 1978-1983
FF 6 News clipping on Seaward Kennels, 1984
Oversize 1 1976-1990
Oversize 2 News Clipping

Drury, Kitty

FF 7 First club minutes, 1930-1950; First prints of “The Bulletin” (first club publication), 1930; correspondences, 1930-1955
FF 8 1959
FF 9 1959
FF 10 1959

Lerner, Larry

Box 4
FF 1 1975-1977
FF 2 1976
FF 3 1976-1977
FF 4 1976-1977
FF 5 1976-1977
FF 6 1976-1977
FF 7 1976-1978
Oversize 1 1976-1977; 1975-1977

Membership Lists

Box 5
FF 1 1959
FF 2 c. 1971-1975

“The Newf and You”

FF 3 1976-1977


FF 4 1950
FF 5 1951
FF 6 1952
FF 7 1953
FF 8 1954
FF 9 1954
FF 10 1954
FF 11 1955
FF 12 1956
FF 13 1956-1958
FF 14 1957
FF 15 1957
Box 6
FF 1 1961-1963
FF 2 1964
FF 3 1964-1965
FF 4 c.1965-1966; 1991
FF 5 1969-1972
FF 6 1969-1972
FF 7 1974-1975
FF 8 1976-1977
FF 9 1978
FF 10 1981-1988
FF 11 1984
FF 12 1980; 1985
FF 13 1984-1985
FF 14 1985-1988
FF 15 1988
Oversize 1 1950-1988 (not inclusive)

Publications and Printed Material


Box 7
FF 1 1937-1938
FF 2 1957
FF 3 1958; 1977
FF 4 1967
FF 5 1972
Oversize 2 News Clippings, 1971; 1978; 1984

 Misc. Pubs.

FF 6 1959; 1975-1976; 1979
FF 7 c.1981
FF 8 1988

“Newf Tide”

FF 9 April 1971-Fall 1973 (not inclusive)
FF 10 Winter 1973/74-Summer 1975 (inclusive)
FF 11 Fall/Winter 1975-August/September 1977 (not inclusive)
FF 12 Jan/Feb 1978-Winter 1979 (inclusive)


Box 8
FF 1 Specialties 1967-1974
FF 2 Specialties 1975-1978
FF 3 Specialties 1978
FF 4 Specialties 1977-1978
FF 5 Specialties 1978
FF 6 Specialties 1979
FF 7 Specialties 1979-1980
FF 8 Specialties 1988
FF 9 Specialties 1991
FF 10 Specialties 1993
Box 9
FF 1 Water Tests 1974
FF 2 Water Tests 1975
FF 3 Water Tests 1977
FF 4 Water Tests 1978
FF 5 Water Tests 1979
FF 6 Water Tests 1980
FF 7 Water Tests 1980
FF 8 Water Tests 1981
FF 9 Water Tests 1981
Oversized 1 Water Tests 1974; 1975


Box 10
FF 1 c. 1960; 1968-1978; 1985 (Edenglen’s Titanic, CD/TD)
FF 2 c. 1928; 1945/6; 1952; 1959; 1971-1979 (Ch. Seafarer; Can./Am. Ch. Topmast’ Pied Piper)
FF 3 1962
FF 4 1963
FF 5 1964
FF 6 1965
FF 7 1966
FF 8 1967
FF 9 1968 (Ch. Edenglen’s Francis Drake [Larry Lerner’s “Fido”])
FF 10 1969
FF 11 1970
FF 12 1971 (Edenglen’s Chocolate Chip, CD/TD)
FF 13 1972 (Ch. Edenglen’s Great Harry [Larry Lerner’s “Harry”])
FF 14 1973
FF 15 1974
FF 16 1975
FF 17 1976
FF 18 c.1982-1985 (Ch. Seaward’s Blackbeard)
FF 19 National Specialty winners, 1983
FF 20 1999-2001
Oversize 2 Ch. Heffalump’s Ellis, 1978



Box 11
FF 1 Awards: Seaward/Nell Ayers 1952; 1955
FF 2 Awards: Seaward/Nell Ayers 1952; 1955; 1963; 1967; 1982; 1983; 1986
FF 3 Pedigrees: Seaward/Nell Ayers 1945; 1947; 1951; 1952
FF 4 Pedigrees: Seaward/Nell Ayers 1952; 1954-1960
FF 5 Registrations: Seaward/Nell Ayers 1953-1966
Oversize 3 Pedigrees: Seaward/Nell Ayers 1945-1962 (not inclusive)

News Clippings

FF 6 Seaward/Nell Ayers 1954-1955; 1971
FF 7 Seaward/Nell Ayers 1991; c.1952-1956


FF 8 Waseeka c. 1940
FF 9 Seaward/Nell Ayers c.1950-1959
FF 10 Seaward/Nell Ayers c.1960-1969
FF 11 Seaward/Nell Ayers 1946; 1971; 1976; 1978 (Ch. Oquaga’s Sea Pirate)
FF 12 Seaward/Nell Ayers 1959; 1961-1962; 1972; 1974; 1976; 1981
Box 12
Complete scrapbook Seaward/Nell Ayers, focus on Ch. Seaward’s Black Beard/ “Adam” c. 1979-1985
Binder 1 Waseeka Kennels scrapbook c.1915-1932

Statement by Bo Lande (author of “The Newfoundland,” Field & Stream, June 1947), recorded in This is the Newfoundland: Official Publication of the Newfoundland Club of America, ed. Mrs. Maynard K. Drury, ills. Ernest H. Hart (Jersey City, NJ: Crown Publishers, 1971), 21.