Grand Junction, Tennessee has always been a destination for bird dogs and their owners and breeders. The National Field Trial Championships have been held there since the late 19th century, and are still held every year at the Ames Plantation. In 1991, a museum was established to pay tribute to the winners of that competition throughout history, and the culture of the sport.
At the National Bird Dog museum you’ll find photographs, paintings, and sculptures representing the sport, and related items like firearms and hunting caps. Two early 20th century wooden dog-shipping crates, built to allow the dogs to be fed without being removed during railway travel, give a sense of how the dogs were cared for a hundred years ago.
Plenty of taxidermy decorates the space, but the only preserved bird dog is the legendary Count Noble, depicted in pursuit of a Pennsylvania Quail. Count Noble lived form 1879 to 1890, and was on display at Carnegie Hall for decades before being donated to the bird dog museum.
More than 40 breeds of pointers and retrievers are represented in the multiple wings of the museum. Outside is a Walk of Champions, with sculptures of accomplished bird dogs and hunters. The museum runs on donations to the Bird Dog Foundation from supporters and bird dog enthusiasts, and continues to grow. Dogs are welcome.
Know Before You Go
You can plan your visit to coincide with the National Field Trials if you go in February.