Excerpt from The China Fowl: Shanghae, Cochin, and Brahma
This volume is written with two specific purposes in view: first, to give a brief and succinct account, as far as the record permits, of the introduction into America of the Chinese varieties of domestic fowls, subsequently to the appearance of this notable race of poultry in England (in 1843-44) ;and secondly, to correct the numerous errors and false theories that have obtained, both in this country and in Great Britain, touching the origin and establishment of the most noted of modern gallinaceous breeds, first known on both sides of the Atlantic, as the reliable records show, to wit, the "Gray Shanghaes;" or, as they are latterly denominated by common consent, the Light and Dark "Brahma" fowls.
That these latter-mentioned birds descend direct from the Chinese, and not from any India, race, is perfectly clear; since, as W. B. Tegetmeier, F.Z.S., correctly stated in 1853, "there is not a particle of evidence to show that (what is now called) the Brahma fowls ever came from India." And Mr, Tegetmeier truthfully added also at that early day, that "they originated not in India, but in America."
Lewis Wright of London, however, who has contributed no inconsiderable amount of interesting matter to the poultry literature of modern times, most singularly and ignorantly persists, in his later volumes, upon the idea that the Brahmas are of East India origin; and that the account given by Mr. Virgil Cornish, of an early pair of large gray fowls having been "imported into New York from Luckipoor, up the Brahmapootra River," furnishes the correct theory as to the origin of this variety.
This silly sailor-Cornish-Chamberlin story (which for a time was believed in by some persons), upon which Lewis Wright of England bases his utterly groundless notions, was many years ago absolutely exploded.
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