PURE GRASS BEEF
BLUE ROAN GENETICS
TRADITIONAL BLUE ROAN :
SHORTHORN ANGUS CROSS
(this author discusses Blue-Grey and Blue Roan together)
Research Bulletin No 30, AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION IOWA STATE COLLEGE OF AGRICULTURE AND THE MECHANIC ARTS, January 1916, INHERITANCE OF COLOR AND HORNS IN BLUE GRAY CATTLE BY ORREN LLOYD JONES AND JOHN M EVVARD, page 66
Text from Types and Breeds of Farm Animals, Charles Sumner Plumb, 1906
The crossbred or grade Aberdeen-Angus bullock has long been regarded with especial favor by feeders and butchers. Robert Bruce, a well-known British authority, in commenting on crossing the Aberdeen-Angus and Shorthorn, states that this cross is highly valued by northern breeders, and the large number of farmers in England and Ireland who have resorted to this cross proves pretty clearly the general appreciation of the many good qualities belonging to the blend. Where ordinary judgment is exercised in the selection of sires and dams, the excellence of the produce is at once assured, as the blending of the Shorthorn and Aberdeen-Angus blood results not only in a superior butchers' animal but also in a quick-feeding and rent-paying one. A glance at the records of the great fat-stock shows at once indicates the important position taken by these Shorthorn-AberdeenAngus crosses in the annual prize-award lists. There has been a widespread demand for Aberdeen-Angus bulls for crossing purposes all over the north of Scotland, and this system of crossing has also made its way into other portions' of the kingdom. In my opinion it is immaterial how the cross is brought in — whether through the Shorthorn sire on the Polled cow or the Polled bull and the Shorthorn cow. Circumstances and situation may alone be left to guide the breeder in the selection of the sire to use. A mating of Aberdeen-Angus to white Shorthorn produces a blue-gray animal that for many years has been a prime favorite on the British market. In America such crossbreds are not so common. At the Smithfield Fat-Stock Show in England, from 1900 to 1916 inclusive, in the competition among crossbreds, the several combinations of Aberdeen-Angus and Shorthorn blood virtually won all championships and reserve championships.
THE CATTLE INDUSTRY IN SCOTLAND By the Rev John Gillespie LL D Mouswald Dumfries ,TRANSACTIONS OF THE HIGHLAND AND AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY OF SCOTLAND, FIFTH SERIES VOL X , 1898, page 239
text from Farm Live Stock of Great Britain
The Crosses resulting from mating Aberdeen-Angus and Shorthorn cattle are similar in size and appearance, whichever breed supplies the male, provided the Shorthorn cow put to a polled bull be a big-framed animal. The small Angus cow will throw a full-sized cross to the Shorthorn bull, but the progeny of a small Shorthorn cow and Angus bull is small in the bone and undersized. Nearly all first crosses from pure parents are black, but a few are " grey-hairs," or " blue-grey," like the first-cross Galloway ; and the majority are without horns. Compared with black crosses the blue-greys seem to take more after the Shorthorn, and as cows they are more liable to throw horns in their progeny.
It has been pointed out that a black first-cross between a Galloway bull and a red Shorthorn cow strongly resembles in appearance and also in feeding qualities the Angus breed of cattle, and, had the origin of the latter not been known, the likeness might have been accepted as strong presumptive evidence of its being due to this cross. The Galloway bull is on the whole more impressive than the Aberdeen-Angus, the breed being more ancient in its origin and the cross-bred stock with the pure Shorthorn more uniform in size and of better colours—commanding a readier market in districts where both are known. There is much less uncertainty about a blue-grey entirely free from horns than a black first-cross Aberdeen-Angus that is not so attractive in colour, and may develop horns or scurs, and may easily be mistaken for an inferior type of cross. From the Aberdeen-Angus Shorthorn cross one has the chance of getting probably a greater number of exceptionally good show animals, still there are, all over, more of the narrowhipped sort among them than among Galloway crosses, and they do not possess such well-developed coats of hair to withstand exposure in a humid country like the south-west of Scotland. But that they are unsurpassed as butchers' beasts to be quickly fed in favourable surroundings into beef of the finest quality their annual record at Smithfield clearly shows.
Students of population genetics and shifting balance theory will be interested to see how Sewall Wright used the blue roan cross as an illustration for Mendelian heredity in livestock on page 35 of the above publication: