A Soldier’s Best Friend

Richard Mansergh St. George may have brought his spaniel with him to America. Some British officers kept dogs as reminders of home and as comfort from the labors of campaign. In 1777, General Sir William Howe, the commander of British forces in America, owned a dog that ran away to the American Army after the Battle of Germantown. Upon learning that the dog’s collar was marked with General Howe’s name, George Washington returned the pet to its rightful owner.

Detail from Richard St. George Mansergh-St. George 
Painted by Thomas Gainsborough
Oil on Canvas 
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Felton Bequest, 1992

A Redcoat’s Dog

A redcoat’s canine friend wore this brass collar. It is engraved for Daniel Munroe, the dog’s owner, who served with the 43rd Regiment in Boston. The loyal dog depicted in St. George’s portrait wears a collar that appears to be made of leather with a brass plate attached to it. The names of St. George’s and Munroe’s dogs are unknown

Dog Collar 
Courtesy of Don Troiani