1897, Rawdon Briggs Lee, A History and Description of the Modern Dogs of Great Britain and Ireland, page 227
In fact the modern human beater — the fustian-clad yokel, with a long and stout stick and a stentorian cry of "Cock ! cock ! cock !" — has very long ago pretty well ousted the merry cockers or the more staid Clumber for driving the coverts; certainly an innovation not at all a desirable one.
1931, "Garden Dog Show to Start Tuesday", in New York Times, Feb 8, 1931
The merry Cocker now is one of the most popular of breeds.
1967, Fresno Bee, The, September 1, 1967, Fresno, California