The Maine-Anjou breed originated in the northwestern part of France. At the beginning of the 19th century, the cattle in this region were large, well-muscled animals with light red coats spotted with white. These cattle were known as the Mancelle breed. In 1839 the Count de Falloux, a landowner, imported Durham cattle from England and crossed them with the Mancelle. The cross was extremely successful. In 1908 the Society of Durham-Mancelle Breeders was formed at Chateau-Gontier in the Mayenne district. In 1909 the name was changed to the Society of Maine-Anjou Cattle Breeders, taking the name from the Maine and Anjou river valleys.