Merino wool was considered some of the finest wool in the world. Merino wool originated in Spain centuries ago, known for the superior quality, Louis XVI purchased 318 ewes, 41 rams and 7 wethers, from his cousin King Charles of Spain in 1786. The breed was known as the French Merino or Rambouillet Merino. The Bergerie royale, an experimental royale farm owned by Louis XVI, built his ‘Domaine of Rambouillet’, and now known as the Bergerie nationale. The Bergerie is located 50 miles from Paris. No Rambouillet were sold off this experimental farm for many years.
For the purpose of developing larger ewes and rams the Rambouillet were crossed with the English long wool breeds. This outcrossing grew larger full grown ewes and rams weighing 200 pounds and 300 pounds respectively. Wool production was increased and fiber length improved to more than 3 inches.
Formation of the United States Rambouillet Association in 1889.
Delaine, a type of cloth, is produced by weaving a mixture cotton warp and wool weft, and the wool fleece was a valuable commodity for the manufacture of cloth.
Not only valued for the wool, thel Rambouillet produces a quality lamb and mutton.
Interestingly the Rambouillet was used in the development of the Barbados, the American Blackbelly Barbado and the Moulton.