Saturday, August 25, 2007

Just a Little More Horse, of Course!



The Belgian came from the country of the same name. Although an organization of Belgian horses really took off after the St. Louis World's Fair in 1903, the organization was founded before 1880. Farmer's like this horse because it is an easy keeper and has a docile personality. The modern Belgian is a great wagon horse as well as a doughty work horse. The fact that Belgians are equally as effective in pulling competition as in hitch competition says it all. The most common colors are sorrel and blond sorrel with a white mane and tail. Roans and bays are also common to the breed.

The Clydesdale is from Scotland. It is named for the Clyde River. If you are trying to distinguish the Clyde from other draft horses; look at their wide hoofs and look for feathering above the foot. The most common color in this breed today is bay, with a generous number of browns, blacks and chestnuts. The preferred markings are four white socks to the knee and hocks and a well defined blaze or bald face. There are many roans in the breed. The Clyde with his flowing feather, straight and snappy movement, and generous white markings is a popular hitch horse. Though ranking third numerically and fourth in size in this country, the Clydesdale may well be the best known of all the draft breeds to our urbanized countrymen. The splendid Anheuser Busch eight hitches have brought Clydesdale's down hundreds of streets and into millions of homes across the nation.

The Shire is from England. It can be nearly every possible color with white markings. It too, has feathers, however they are silky and straighter. If you watch movies about merry old England where there are knights in shining armour, you will NOT see shires. Shires were used in battle and in games because the knight in his armour weighed 400 pounds and the horse needed to be a strong durable horse to maintain the rider's needs.

In general, conformation the Percheron is not unlike the Belgian, in fact except for color it would be difficult to distinguish between some animals of both breeds as they are well-muscled, short-backed, drafty animals setting on good feet and legs. Both are pretty much free of the feather that characterizes the Clydesdale and Shire. It is a French bred horse. The horse is black or grey.

April 1916 Rosewood News Andrew Opseth purchased a Percheron mare last week. He bought the horse at the Richard Erickson’s auction. When Opseth had his sale, he sold his BLACK mare.

Rosewood News Fred Jashaw was taken to town following an accident. He was doing his chores. One of his horses had broken loose during the night and in trying to get this animal out from between two others which were tied, a tangle resulted in which the accident occurred.

Rosewood News Ole Lappegaard has a sick horse.

Rosewood News Benhard Ranum is at Viking today on a horse purchasing tour.

May 1910 Boy’s neck broken when kicked by a horse. The lad was instantly killed while feeding the animal on Sunday. Phelps was 14 years old. The horse struck the boy in the head. He is the eldest of eight children and the man of the house when his father is away doing dredging work.

December 1921 Rosewood News Ted Nelson has fallen victim to the wolf hunting fever and has built a canvas enclosed sleigh with regular machine gun opening on the sides with removable top wide runners, and draw by a team of lightly colored horses. They promise to give the wolves a real chase.

June 1923 Man shot through the leg by his own gun, brings his horses to the barn and feeds them before seeking medical attention.

February 1924 A car skidded into a buggy and the driver, Austin Austinson, broke his neck. He and his son were on their way to Holt when an auto, driven by Floran Benier of Jamestown, North Dakota skidded on the narrow, icy road while trying to pass the buggy which Austinson had brought to a halt. The horse was frightened and bolted, tossing Austinson off the back of the buggy. His son was not injured. It was considered a purely accidental tragedy.

May 1925 Rosewood News Last Sunday afternoon, Ted Nelson and Emil Hellquist left with six horses for Warren, in route to Angus where they have been hired to cut for one summer months in highway construction for contractors Solberg and Anderson. Coming to Warren towards evening their horses were stabled for the night and in taking off the harness, one of the broncos became unruly, knocking over Ted and before help arrived had him very badly battered. The young man was immediately taken to the hospital but advices Monday were not very favorable. He was having regained consciousness slightly for a while. His head is badly bruised and it is feared he may have suffered some internal injuries. Mrs. Thea Nelson, his mother and sister, Eleanora and Mrs. T Mellem left on Monday to be with him at the hospital. Ted drove a light colored team; both purchased this winter, one stallion and one bronco weighing about 2800 pounds. Both animals were high spirited but not ugly in spirit.

February 1926 Rosewood News A party of folks driving to Thief River Falls had the misfortune of driving into a team and sleigh driven by Mike Ault, west of Viking and injuring the driver of the car. The driver was taken to the hospital and had his head sewed up. It seems the driver of the Ford, was coming along at a very fair clip of speed on the state road west of TRF when a team was encountered but too late to avoid a collision and with the result that the horses spread one on each side of the car and the sleigh tongue striking the radiator of the car which gave in and the tongue slid above the windshield with the result above mentioned. One of the other boys was slightly bruised but the man with the sleigh rig was not injured. A passing car stopped and took the boy to the hospital.

February 1926 Horse owned by the Ed O’Hara Dray Company falls through the ice and drowns!

(Ed O'Hara is the father of Lorine, who married Otto Ranum. Otto is the son of Knute and Kari Ranum. One of their children, Patrick lives in Oregon).

May 1926 Fire of unknown origin burns barn to the ground. The 32 x 42 barn was on the Martin Rust farm where six calves and three horses were consumed by flames.

June 1931 Benhard Ranum was last week awarded the contract for moving the school building in District number 127 to District number 2 where it will be put to replace the old Willowdale building which burned this spring. He will be assisted in the work by Ted Thompson, and the building will be raised on small trucks and moved the 3 ½ miles with a horse puller. Ranum and Thompson also have the contract for erecting a foundation and building the chimney.

NOTE: It is unclear to me why they are using horses to pull the small trucks. Horse pulling is a big sport in the USA, thirty plus states have organizations. The contest is simply to see what horse can pull the greatest load. The horses are generally Belgians, Percheron's, Clyde's, or Shires. I am thinking they would be Percheron's and possibly rented from a farmer.


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