Meet the Producer: The Jones Debouillet Sheep

The “Meet the Producer” exhibit in the Museum’s Horse & Cattle barn highlights a breed of sheep developed in New Mexico. Debouillet sheep were produced by the late Amos Dee (A.D.) Jones of Roswell and Tatum, New Mexico. In 1920, Jones started crossing Ohio Delaine rams with his herd of 5,500 Rambouillet ewes. By selective breeding, Jones produced a long-stapled, fine-wooled sheep with a large smooth body. It combined the length of the staple and character of the Delaine fleece with the large body of the Rambouillet.

The name, Debouillet, is derived from the names of the two component Merino breeds, “De” taken from the Delaine and “bouillet” from Rambouillet. The name was given to the breed by Jones’ wife, Portia, in 1947. Today the Jones’ Ranch, in Tatum is operated by A.D. Jones’ son Ralls (Punch) and Ralls’ daughter Deb and son Dirk. The Museum has two Debouillet ewes in its livestock collection.

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