Historian recalls Muggs, a beloved Murray dog that attended parades in costume

Muggs and friend, as photographed by William A. Monacelli.

Posted 16 July 2021 at 10:42 am

Main outfit included Legion cap, sweater and corn cob pipe

By Catherine Cooper, Orleans County Historian

“Illuminating Orleans” – Vol. 1, No. 17

Mugs is shown in his parade attire.

MURRAY – Muggs, the celebrated Murray mascot has been the subject of columns in the past but what better time to remember him than “the dog days of summer”?

This term originated with the ancient Romans who observed that the hottest days of summer, July and August, coincided with the position of Sirius in the heavens. Since Sirius, the brightest star in the constellation Canis Major (Large Dog), rises and sets with the summer sun, the Romans thought that it added heat to the sun and caused higher temperatures.

In actual fact, it is the tilt of the Earth which causes the sun’s light to hit the Northern Hemisphere at a more direct angle and for a longer period which results in longer, hotter days.

Muggs, a 97-pound boxer with sad eyes and droopy jowls who was born in Medina in 1953, lived in Fancher with Thomas De Palma, Town of Murray Supervisor. A character canine, Muggs led a busy life as a mascot for several causes.

Sporting his signature Legion cap and sweater and holding a corn cob pipe between his teeth, he marched in firemen’s parades and attended Legion conventions with Mr. De Palma, a former state Legion vice-commander. Muggs also visited schools and hospitals and never failed to elicit a smile.

The Medina Journal and the Democrat & Chronicle both reported on the death of Muggs, May 26, 1963. He is buried at the pet cemetery in Hornell, NY.