Wilson Dunn FT Hall of Fame & A Bit of Etc
"Many folks say that the greatest gifts in life are a good wife, good kids and a good dog. I have been blessed. I have had all three". Wilson Dunn FT HOF
There are those who would tell you that the National Bird Dog Museum sleeps quietly within hallowed walls in Grand Junction, Tennessee just south of the Ames Plantation where the American Field National Champion is crowned every February.
Those people would be wrong. The National Bird Dog Museum exists within heart and soul of one Wilson Dunn, oldest resident of Hardeman County and only Grand Junction native to own an American Field National Champion. Ch Dunn’s Fearless Bud.
A drive down State Rt 57 should be and is a leisurely excursion. Beware the cloying sultry air that surrounds the National Bird Dog Museum & leave air for your dogs if you have them along on the trip. However, if you want the real living bird dog museum, Turn left to Dunn’s Sporting Goods and walk into the store….. You will see a chipper, bright eyed fellow with rounding cheeks just waiting for you, the shopper, the visitor, his company to enter the great man’s lair. Be prepared. You will become his next greatest project. He will give to you in the guise of bird dogs, bird dog stuff the art of "selling" sporting ideals.
Wilson Dunn is the ultimate salesman for bird dog forayers. In life most are the bug or the windshield. In our life Wilson Dunn is always the windshield wiper. One can't help but be drawn into his passion what is a bird dog. Even in the nineties Bud is still sharp as a tack & that sentence is no understatement.
Wilson Dunn has been waiting forever for you. Just turn on his lights, light up his life and he will turn you on to….real bird dogs. He is a man of his word and every word he utters, he believes to be the absolute truth and will educate even a curmudgeony heart with his zest, his passion and dedication for bird dogs. No bust that one sees down at the National Bird Dog Museum can do justice to Wilson Dunn so long as he draws in breath. I told Wilson, "he is lots better looking than that silly old bust down the street." That got me a really sweet smile from Wilson .
An intregal part of Wilson’s charm is understanding and accepting his pride, passion & righteousness about his sporting contributions & convictions.
Bill Tarrant, poet laureate of bird dogs, had a half a million life insurance policy to be donated to the NBDM at Bill’s death. Upon hearing of Wilson’s removal from the NBDM BOD, Tarrant destroyed the policy and dictated that none of his money would be used for a museum that Wilson Dunn took no administrative part in. Bill was a man of very high principles. That he took these steps should educate all those, ignorant of the intrinsic bird dog value of one…Wilson Dunn, the real National Bird Dog Museum.
Wilson Dunn also lays claim to THE greatest bird dog performance in the National Championship when his Ch Dunn’s Fearless Bud won the National Championship in 1990 with ten finds, still the record. To hear Wilson tell his story is bliss and who can doubt historical gleaning?
When I visited Wilson, he was holding court describing his favorite dog’s win to a group of newcomers. I was Xeroxing stuff for Wilson and walked by to hear Wilson proudly telling them that his Bud had the record with ten finds. I politely interrupted and Wilson BEAMED at me when I with great timing said “ummm…”ten perfect finds on wild birds” Emphasis on the word “perfect”.
Wilson summed up his life in his obituary to Ch Dunn’s Fearless Bud. “Many folks say that the greatest gifts in life are a good wife, good kids and a good dog. I have been blessed. I have had all three.”
The first day I visited Wilson, he was looking forward to going home and having his daily drink with his wife Polly, who he met in a diner of West Tennessee and put a nickel in the jukebox to dance with his girl. I asked him if that “was the best nickel he ever spent. “ ??
I guess we all know the answer to that one.
Since this writing in 2006 Mz Polly Dunn passed away in January 2009. Wilson is still kicking. Go see him whilst you can. dlb
Dunn's Fearless Bud from AMERICAN FIELD December 11, 1999 (originates from The Boggs Collection)
On November 24, the eve of Thanksgiving, Dunn's Fearless Bud met his last challenge. He lived a long life and at the age of fifteen his health had taken a turn for the worse. At the advice of his doctor, and not wanting to see him suffer further, he was put to sleep. He is gone, but hardly will be forgotten.
Bud was bred by Dr Jack D Huffman, whelped in March, 1984. He had a great career with Randy Patterson. He was third in the American Field Pheasant Futurity in the fall of 1985 and the following spring he won the All-America Derby Championship. During the 1988-89 seasons Bud ran up four straight firsts- the Alabama Open All-Age, the Black Belt All-Age, West Tennessee Open All-Age and the Alabama.
He won the 1990 renewal of the National Championship (in which he had ten finds). Bud appeared seven times in the National Championship & finished his bid there six times. At the end of the 1989-90 season he was named Purina Award winner.
In the fall of 1990 he was runner-up in the Mississippi Championship and in the spring of 1991 he won the Texas Open Championship. He was runner-up in the spring of 1992 and among his final placements was runner-up that fall in the United States Chicken Championship at Solon Springs, Wis. He had 25 wins in all.
His record as a producer shows 72 winners, among them: Champions Shaw Creek Ace, Al's Precious Star, Greensboro's Hardhead, Whippoorwill High Jack, Whippoorwill Razor and Capital Gains.
His legacy will be carried on by the winners he sired and through the few remaining straws of frozen semen. After these are gone, there will be no more.
Our thanks go to everyone involved in making Bud a champion. A people dog, all the way. We will miss you, Bud. Wilson & Polly Dunn
National Bird Dog Foundation
National Bird Dog Museum
Field Trial Hall of Fame
English Setters on the NBDM
National Shoot To Retrieve Exhibit at NBDM
American Profile: Bird Dog Junction
Pointer History (Be sure to click on all sublinks)
William Secord Gallery
Another famous NBDM Artist, Todd Mallett
Edmund Osthaus, Famous Portrayer
More by Osthaus
Biography of Osthaus
Hardeman County, Tennessee
Preserving Bird Dog Traditions
Amateur Field Trial Clubs Association
Ross B Young
Another Wonderful NBDM Artist
Red Setter History
Museums of West Tennessee
Llewellyn Setter Page
What is a Llewellyn Setter
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