Origins of the Bernese Mountain Dog Home Page

The Bernese Mountain Dog Home Page was officially opened on March 8, 1995 by Matthew N. Kleiman. The first home page was titled "The Berner Bulletin" and was little more than a collection of links to Bernese and canine-related information on the Internet. The first "site" consisted of a single HTML page, and contained no graphics or pictures. The site was originally hosted on the Prairienet system, and didn't move to the location until July 1997.

To put things in context, the Internet of 1995 was very different than we know it today. For example, 1995 was the first year that AOL, Compuserve, and Prodigy offered Internet access to their subscribers. The Berner Home Page was online before homepages appeared from CNN, ESPN, Alta Vista or Amazon, to name a few. The home page predates Internet Explorer, Java and Real Audio. In mid-1995 there were 23,500 webservers in the world-today there are over 36 million.

In the early days of the Internet, it was very difficult to find information. There were already a variety of excellent Bernese resources available, but they were widely scattered and almost impossible for "newbies" to locate. Thus, the Bernese Mountain Dog Home Page was born. The first iteration of the home page was a collection of links, pointers and instructions to access information about Berners and dogs on the Internet-whether on the web, usenet (newsgroups), gopher (web-precursor), ftp, or email.

Response to the home page was extraordinary. As more and more Berner owners and lovers found the website-and found each other-it became clear that a thriving community of Bernese fans existed on the Internet but with any good way to communicate. So, on May 5, 1995, the Bernese Mountain Dog Mailing List (Berner-L) was created. The mailing list opened the door for Bernese lovers from around the world to share information, news, laughs and tears.


along came Sally....