Although as a registered breed in its own right, the Large Munsterlander has only
existed since 1922, the history of the Large Munsterlander goes back to the Middle
Ages. The breed has evolved from the ancient longhaired hawking and retrieving dogs
found across Europe, where they can be seen depicted in paintings from the 16th and
17th centuries. Up to the middle of the 19th century the breeding of hunting dogs
in Germany was quite well regulated, then breeders decided that improvement was required.
In most areas in Germany, out-crosses with English Setters and Pointers were very
popular, but by 1879 the German breeders decided to take control and establish proper
breed standards. Up to this time, what are now known as Large Munsterlanders, were
registered as German Longhaired Pointers, which included both black and brown variations.
When the new breed standard was fixed for the German Longhaired Pointer, it only
allowed for brown or brown and white dogs to be included. The reason for this was
that the German breeders wanted to distance themselves from the "English" crosses
and the colour black was supposed to have been introduced in this manner. This was
also a forbidden colour in both German Shorthaired and Wirehaired Pointers. The reasoning
was totally unsound, as the colour black had always been present in German breeds.
This was especially true of the Large Munsterlander, which were mostly popular in
Westphalia and Lower Saxony, where crosses with the "English" breeds were not usually,
if at all practised.
The hunters who owned them keenly supported the breeding of the black and white Longhaired
Pointers and in 1919, to ensure the continuation of the breed, decided to form their
own society. A foundation list for the breed was compiled for the breed register,
which was started in 1922.