North American Wensleydale sheep came to the United States in the late 1990s. They were the result of a breed-up program, where foundation ewes from either the Cotswold, Lincoln Longwool, or Leicester Longwool breed were artifically insemenated. The resulting lambs from this procedure were the first 50% North American Wensleydales in the country. Over the years, the association has grown from just a few breeders to over 25 breeders! It is up to the members of the association, as well as the general public, to preserve this rare breed for future generations. Many fiber artists in America flock to Wensleydale breeders for the lustrous longwool fiber.