bert terhune

Albert Payson Terhune


Albert Payson Terhune (December 21 1872February 18 1942) was an American author, dog breeder, and journalist. He is best known for his novels relating the adventures of his beloved collies and as a breeder of collies at his Sunnybank Kennels, the lines of which still exist in today's Rough Collies.


Albert Payson Terhune was born in New Jersey to Mary Virginia Hawes, a writer of household management books and pre-Civil War novels under the name Marion Harland; and the Reverend Edward Payson Terhune. Terhune had four sisters and one brother, though only two of his sisters lived to be adults: Christine Terhune Herrick (1859-1944); and Virginia Terhune Van De Water (1865-1945).

Sunnybank was originally the family's summer home, with Terhune making it his permanent residence in 1912. He was educated at Columbia University where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1893. From 1894-1914, he worked as a reporter for the Evening World.

Terhune was married twice. His first wife, Lorraine Bryson Terhune, died at the age of 23 four days after giving birth to Lorraine Virginia Terhune Stevens (1898-1956) and nine months into the marriage. He later remarried to Anice Terhune who was "The Mistress" in his novels, but they never had children. All of his family, including his parents and Terhune himself, are buried at the Pompton Reformed Church in Pompton Lakes, New Jersey.

His estate, Sunnybank, in Wayne, New Jersey is currently maintained as Terhune-Sunnybank Park. It is open to the public and visitors can visit the graves of many of the dogs mentioned in Terhune's works and view a collection of Terhune's book and dog awards at the Van Riper-Hopper Historic House Museum. Historical and family items from the Terhune home, "The Place," can be found at the Pompton Lakes Historical Museum.

Writing career

Many of his stories were originally published in magazines such as Redbook, Greenbook, AKC Gazette, and Ladies Home Journal. The first of his books about his dogs, Lad: A Dog, collected a dozen stories about the most famous of the Sunnybank dogs, Lad, was first published in 1919 and has remained in print since that year.


  • Syria From the Saddle (1896)
  • Columbia Stories (1897)
  • How to Box to Win (1900) (written as "Terry McGovern")
  • Dr. Dale: A Story Without A Moral (1900) (with Marion Harland)
  • The New Mayor (1907)
  • Caleb Conover, Railroader (1907)
  • The World's Great Events (1908)
  • The Fighter (1909)
  • The Return of Peter Grimm (1912) Novelised from the Play by David Belasco
  • The Woman (1912)
  • Around the World in Thirty Days (1914)
  • Dad (1914) written with Sinclair Lewis
  • The Story of Damon and Pythias (1915)
  • Superwomen (1916) Republished as: Famous Hussies Of History (1943)
  • Dollars and Cents (1917)
  • The Years of the Locust (1917)
  • Fortune (1918)
  • Wonder Women In History (1918)
  • Lad: A Dog (1919) Start of his switch to mostly writing about his dogs; made into a live-action film in 1962.
  • Bruce (1920)
  • Buff: A Collie (1921)
  • The Man In the Dark (1921)
  • His Dog (1922)
  • Black Gold (1922)
  • Black Caesar's Clan (1922)
  • Further Adventures of Lad (1922) Republished as: Dog Stories Every Child Should Know (1941)
  • The Pest (1923)
  • Lochinvar Luck (1923)
  • The Amateur Inn (1923)
  • Treve (1924)
  • The Tiger's Claw (1924)
  • The Heart of a Dog (1924)
  • Now That I'm Fifty (1925)
  • The Runaway Bag (1925)
  • Wolf (1925)
  • Najib (1925)
  • Treasure (1926) Republished as: The Faith of a Collie (1949)
  • My Friend The Dog (1926)
  • Gray Dawn (1927)
  • The Luck of the Laird (1927) Republished as: A Highland Collie (1950)
  • Bumps (1927)
  • Blundell's :Last Guest (1927)
  • Water! (1928)
  • Black Wings (1928)
  • The Secret of Sea-Dream House (1929)
  • Lad of Sunnybank (1929)
  • To The Best Of My Memory (1930)
  • Diana Thorne's Dog Basket: A Series of Etchings (1930)
  • Proving Nothing (1930)
  • A Dog Named Chips (1931)
  • The Son Of God (1932)
  • The Dog Book (1932)
  • The Way of a Dog (1932)
  • Letters of Marque (1934)
  • The Book Of Sunnybank (1934) Republished as: Sunnybank: Home of Lad (1953)
  • Real Tales of Real Dogs (1935)
  • True Dog Stories (1936)
  • The Critter And Other Dogs (1936)
  • Unseen! (1937)
  • The Terhune Omnibus (1937) Republished as The Best-Loved Dog Stories Of Albert Payson Terhune in 1954.
  • A Book of Famous Dogs (1937) Republished as: Famous Dog Stories Every Child Should Know (1937)
  • Grudge Mountain (1939) Republished as: Dog of the High Sierras (1951)
  • Dogs (1940)
  • Loot! (1940) Republished as: Collie to The Rescue '' (1952)
  • Across The Line (1945) (With notes and commentary by Anice Terhune)
  • Wallace: Glasgow's Immortal Fire Dog (1961)
  • Great Dog Stories (1994) Collects five stories from The Heart of a Dog and five from My Friend The Dog.

Further reading

  • Marion Harland's Autobiography, Terhune, Mary Virginia Hawes (1910), New York, Harpers. - One of the few books that deal with A.P. Terhunes first wife: Lorraine Bryson Terhune
  • The Bert Terhune I Knew, Terhune, Anice (1943), New York, Harpers.
  • In The Ramapos, A True Story of the Terhunes and the Little Town They Loved, Struble, Evelin Armstron (1966), Rocco Press.
  • Albert Payson Terhune: The Master of Sunnybank, a Centennial Biography, Unkelbach,Kurt (1972), New York Charterhouse - Often cited as one of the worse biographies published about A.P. Terhune with numerous errors.
  • The Master of Sunnybank: A biography of Albert Payson Terhune, Litvag, Irving (1977) , New York: Harper & Row.
  • Albert Payson Terhune: A Bibliography of Primary Works, Rais, Kathleen (1997) Phoenixville, PA.
  • His Dogs: Albert Payson Terhune and the Sunnybank Collies, Marshall, Kristina (2001), Collie Club of America Foundation. (sold only at The Gathering, Sunnybank, Pompton Lakes, New Jersey in 2001, numbered limited edition of only 500 copies)
  • The Lost Stories of Albert Payson Terhune, Marshall, Kristina (2003), Collie Club of America Foundation. (Limited edition)
  • Forever Friends: A Guide to the Dogs of Sunnybank, Marshall, Kristina (2007), Collie Club of America Foundation. (Limited edition of only 750 copies)


External links

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