That's what I've read in more than one source; I don't think anyone really knows for sure where the breed originates from, but I have read this more than once.Originally posted by Oscar&Murphy's Mom:
I've been doing alot of research on bassets lately. I believe they were bred from Bloodhounds but the shortness was a genetic defect that occurred. Then they started breeding to obtain that particular trait. However, I'm new at this and I could be wrong.
What have I learned from all this? A great deal. First of all, with a fair amount of certainty I can say that all of our bassets trace their ancestry to a few French imports to England of the ancestors of our modern basset, the Basset Artésien Normand, in the 1870s. It doesn’t matter how different our hounds look today; they all came from the same two or three dogs, who were most likely knuckled over (today a disqualifying fault), weighed maybe 30 pounds (as opposed to 50, 60, or 70) and were a lot higher on leg and lighter in bone than today. The second, equally important observation is that until the early 1950s there was no real distinction between field dogs and show dogs. Today, unfortunately, that is not the case. Anyone with a modicum of knowledge of the breed can distinguish between field and show bassets. Sometime they almost look like two different breeds. (I might add here that there are a few brave souls who try to breed dogs who can hold their own in both field trials and in the show ring!) Third, until the 1950s a large number of bassets were registered as blue-ticked or silver, which attests to the fact that in France more than a hundred years ago the Artesian bassets were occasionally crossed with another French hound breed, the Basset Bleu de Gascogne, a breed which is blue-ticked. Fourth, the 1950s saw a great deal of growth in breeding, with the number of bassets multiplying rapidly during that period. Dams often had three or four litters and, in turn, four or five of the get in each litter were bred. Fifth, with absolute certainty we know that bloodhounds were introduced into the strain not just once in the nineteenth century but again in the twentieth, both times in England. That crossing gave our basset hounds their typical bloodhound-like heads and introduced a heavier bone structure than one would find in the Artesian basset hounds. Sixth, we know that some of the American kennels, especially Carl Smith’s kennel in Ohio in the 1920s, crossbred bassets with beagles and possibly with dachshunds.