While the majority of people who own collies are average everyday people, there have been a few very famous ones over the years. In addition to Queen Victoria the list includes...
Edgar Rice Burroughs, best known
for his creation of the jungle hero Tarzan, with his wife Emma and their all white Collie, Rajah. The year was 1903.
U.S. President Calvin Coolidge and first lady Grace with their all white Collie, Rob Roy. November 5, 1924. They actually owned 4 collies total, Rob Roy, Prudence Primm, Ruby Rough and Bessie,
U.S. President Lyndon Johnson with his all white Collie, Blanco. This photo was taken in 1966.
Elvis and Pricilla Presley and their collie Baba.
Reveille is the official mascot of Texas A&M University.
Country singer Jim Reeves loved his collie Cheyenne so much that the two were burried side by side.
Elizabeth Taylor stared in "Lassie Come Home" in 1943 at the age of 11. At the age of 60 she received a collie puppy as a gift. The puppy was a seventh generation grand puppy of Pal, the original Collie she stared with in the 1943 movie.
Jack London and his wife with two of their dogs in Glen Ellen, Ca.
U.S. President Herbert Hoover had a collie named Glen.
In 1889 U.S. President Benjamin Harrison had a collie named Dash.
The first canine movie star was a collie named Blair. Blair was the star of Cecil Hepworth's six and a half minute film in 1905,
In the film, "Rover," must rescue a baby who has been stolen from her maid by a gypsy. He trails them to an attic hideout, then races home to bring the infant's father (Hepworth) back to save her. Most of the footage is devoted to the dog's brave journey, a brand new concept in film at the time.
Hepworth cast his own wife, who also wrote Rescued by Rover, and baby daughter for the film, as well as the family dog, Blair.
Pictured: Blair with the Hepworths in a scene at the end of Rescued by Rover.
Marilyn Monroe and a collie at a photo shoot in 1953.
John Lennon and an unknown collie.
W. Atlee Burpee, founder of Burpee Seed and Plant Company, borrowed $1,000 from his mother in 1876, at the age of 18, to start a small business selling seeds, chickens, turkeys and other fowl bred on his little farm near Philadelphia. Over time, Burpee expanded to breed collies, sheep and hogs.
Fordhook Kennels bred collies to sell by mail order and ship by train until 1911.
Kevin Costner and an unknown collie.
The youngest dog to win a Best in Show at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show was a Rough Collie named Laund Loyalty of Bellhaven. He was so new to the United States in 1929 that he wasn't even AKC registered, he was shown as "listed." His last exploit before leaving England was to win a Collie Specialty. When he won the WKC Working Group, he received acclaim, but wasn't expected to go any further - terriers were still favorites. But on the final day when the Collie, only nine months old, took Best in Show under judge Dr. Ford, the crowd was taken aback. It was not a popular win. And yet, here he is, in the WKC record book.
Robert Plant and his collie Strider. The song called "Bron Y Aur Stomp" was about Strider. It pretty much sums up the loving relationship between the dog and his master!
Florence Martus (1868–1943) took it upon herself to be the unofficial greeter of all ships that entered and left the Port of Savannah, Georgia, between 1887 and 1931. Florence lived most of her life with her brother George, a light keeper, at his small white cottage on Elba Island. Florence and her constant companion, a collie, would wave a handkerchief by day and a lantern by night at all passing ships. According to legend, not a ship was missed in her forty-four years on watch. A statue of Florence and her collie by the sculptor Felix de Weldon has been erected in Morrell Park on the historic riverfront of Savannah.
Beatrix Potter had a collie named Kep. Below is an llustration from Beatrix Potter's Jemima Puddleduck. where Kep was illustrated. Kep worked her sheep at Hill Top Farm in the beautiful Lake District. Kep was the first and favorite of many collies on the farm.
Jack Pickford, actor and brother to Mary Pickford the motion picture actress, co-founder of the film studio United Artists and one of the original 36 founders of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, also known as "America's Sweetheart, had collies. He even stared in films with his collie Prince on several occasions.
Paul McCartney petting a Saint Bernard and a Collie puppy during the filming of Magical Mystery Tour, 14 September 1967. Although we know that Paul actually owned an Old English Sheepdog, this is still a fun photo.
Collies during World War I
A collie of royal ancestry became the mascot of American soldiers. Before he joined the army this pedigreed collie bore the name of Bum. As the unit mascot he answered to the more appropriate name of Bullets.
Messenger dog with its handler, in France, during World War I. This collie worked as a messenger in the front line under constant gunfire. A scrolled up message can be seen attached to his collar.
Messenger collie wearing a gas mask.
Starberry Collies eating Gains Meal dog food.
In 1971 a rough collie stared in the John Wayne movie "Big Jake". The collies playing a dog named "Dawg" were actually 2 Weatherwax collies named Silver and Laddie. Their coats had been dyed for the part. In 1954 the Kentucky Derby winner Determine had a mascot and barn mate named Roxey.
The Collie on this September 29, 1929 cover of The Saturday Evening Post was Norman Rockwell's beloved, Raleigh.
An anecdote about Rockwell and his own dog is actually very telling. A reporter in The New York Times (11-19-79) quotes Rockwell’s former brother-in-law Howard O’Connor telling a story about him.
Rockwell needed to go to Europe on business, so he had to leave his collie, Raleigh, behind. According to O’Connor, the dog mourned terribly for Rockwell, and the vet felt the dog would surely die.
Norman returned home, picked up Raleigh, and responded to the situation by hand-feeding Raleigh every two hours for days. The dog perked up, put on weight, and regained his health. However, his whiskers remained white and sad-looking.
The story goes that Norman said to the dog, “Listen, Raleigh, I promise I’ll never leave you alone again if you just let the whiskers get back to their natural color.”
In a few short weeks, Raleigh’s whiskers were dark again, and Rockwell maintained his promise to Raleigh, never leaving him again.