Burly and dark fired tobacco crop
The first successful commercial crop was cultivated in Virginia in 1612 by Englishman John Rolfe. Within seven years, it was the colony’s largest export. Over the next two centuries, the growth of tobacco as a cash crop fueled the demand in North America for slave labor.
Former village, SE Va., first permanent English settlement in America; est. May 14, 1607, by the London Company on a marshy peninsula (now an island) in the James River and named for the reigning English monarch, James I. Disease, starvation, and Native American attacks wiped out most of the colony, but the London Company continually sent more men and supplies, and John Smith briefly provided efficient leadership (he returned to England in 1609 for treatment of an injury). After the severe winter of 1609–10.
Parrott Farms is proud of our Jay Sisler’s “La Racosa” and Hangin’ Tree bloodlines in our registered Australian Shepherds. We raise several litters a year.
La Racosa line is a strong working line Aussie, we do not recommend this line unless you are looking for a WORKING dog, if you are, then we highly recommend this bloodline…you won’t be disappointed! More info on the Australian shepherd page.
The Australian Shepherd is not really an Australian breed, but it came to America by way of Australia. One popular theory of the breed’s origin begins during the 1800’s when the Basque people of Europe settled in Australia, bringing with them their sheep and sheepdogs. Shortly thereafter, many of these shepherds relocated to the western United States, with their dogs and sheep. American shepherds naturally dubbed these dogs Australian Shepherds because that was their immediate past residence. The rugged area of Australia and western America placed demands on the herding dogs that they had not faced in Europe, but through various crossed and rigorous selection for working ability, the Basque dog soon adapted and excelled under these harsh conditions. The breed kept a low profile until the 1950’s, when they were featured in a popular trick dog act that performed in rodeos and was featured in film. Many of these dogs, owned by Jay Sisler, can be found in the pedigrees of today’s Aussies. The first Aussie was registered with the International English Shepherd Registry, now known as the National Stock Dog Registry. In 1957.
Trailriding & Our Horses
History and Origin of the Breed
The American Saddlebred horse can trace its roots to the easy gaited Galloway and Hobbie horses which were shipped to North America from the British Isles in the 1600s. These hardy little horses thrived and grew in the new environment; through selective breeding the Narragansett Pacer was developed and named for Rhode Island’s Narragansett Bay area where many were raised. These were also found up and down the eastern seaboard, including Virginia where they were also produced in large numbers. These animals moved their legs in concert on the same side of their bodies, contacting the ground in a broken cadence. The ride was comfortable, compared to the jolt of a trot. These horses are now “extinct” in the U. S. and in mane, because they were exported to the West Indies by the thousands. The Paso Fino is a direct descendant of the Narragansett and is probably almost the same horse.
Before they were all gone, Narragansett mares were crossed with Thoroughbreds, which the colonists began importing from England in the early 1700s. By 1776 during the American Revolution, a horse simply called the American horse had become a recognized type. It had the size and beauty of the Thoroughbred, but retained the ability to learn the easy riding gaits. These animals were used for riding, to pull the plow during the week, the carriage on Saturday night and for other work. They were prized for a pleasant temperament, eagerness, strength and stamina.
It was the American horse that carried colonial cavalry to victory over the British at King’s Mountain in South Carolina. After the Revolution, they carried their masters through the Cumberland Gap to the frontier of Kentucky. These animals were the immediate precursors of the American Saddlebred.
There was continual crossing with Thoroughbreds, and over time some Morgan and Standardbred blood was added. When the first horse shows were held in Kentucky, Virginia and Missouri in the early 1800s, American Saddlebreds were frequently judged the winners because of their beauty, style and utility. The first “national” horse show was held in 1856 at the St. Louis Fair and Saddlebreds were prominent.
Horses became a major commercial commodity in Kentucky, and “Kentucky saddlers” were particularly prized and achieved national prominence. Thousands were shipped to the eastern market and throughout the south. This is the first breed of horse claimed by the Commonwealth of Kentucky as its own.
By the time of the Civil War, Saddlebreds were among the most popular riding animals in America. They were used in great numbers by the Confederate cavalry and demonstrated incredible endurance and dependability on long marches and under fire. The men of John Hunt Morgan and Nathan Bedford Forest were exclusively mounted on these horses. Generals on both sides proudly rode Saddlebreds. Traveller, General Robert E. Lee’s mount and the most famous horse of the war had breeding typical of an early Saddlebred. His sire was the Thoroughbred Gray Eagle and his dam a mare of mixed breeding. Traveller possessed a smooth rack.
After this terrible strife, American Saddlebred horses went to all parts of the nation with returning soldiers. They could be seen on the bridle paths of Central Park in New York City and on the plains of Texas herding cattle. Today, American Saddlebreds are found in all 50 states, Canada, England, Germany, Holland, Scandinavia, Italy, Greece, Australia, Japan and many other countries. The Saddlebred is the most popular of the non-racing breeds in South Africa, which began importing them after World War I. A five gaited stallion bred and raised in South Africa won the World’s Grand Championship at the 1997 Kentucky State Fair.
|The Tennessee Walking Horse|
For more than a hundred years prior to 1935 Tennesseans had been riding a horse which had easy gaits under the saddle. Tennesseans had always loved horses. The early pioneers who cam across the mountains from the Carolinas and from Virginia brought a hardy stock of horses with them. These horses were used for a three-fold purpose, that of riding, driving and for utility work on the farms as the land emerged from a wilderness.
The horses in Tennessee in the early days had Thoroughbred blood in their veins. There was also a strain of the Pacer, and some Morgan blood prevailed. By Andrew Jackson’s time racing on the flat and quarter racing were well established.
Later the turn of the century these horses with good gaits were exhibited at County Fairs. Completion was healthy and each breeder tried to produce and developed a horse which would excel at easy gaits under the saddle. These horses were known to oldsters as “Saddle” horses. They were later called Plantation Horses, or Plantation Walking Horses. Today they are known as Tennessee Walking Horses.
The Walking Horse is of composite blood. Although the Walking horse of today is a distinct entity of its own. Which undoubtedly came about through a crossing of the Thoroughbred with the sturdy stock of the Saddle Horses which the Virginians brought across the mountains in the early pioneer days & through a mixture with the Canadian Pacer & even more the Narragansett Pacer. Although the Narragansett Pacer is extinct it pre-dates all American breeds & is the source of all pacing horses in America. To this was added the blood of the Morgan & the Saddlebred.
Looking back through various Foundation horses you would find many famous names of the past that make up today’s Tennessee Walking Horse. Throughout a century & more of meticulous breeding the Walking horse has come to possess some of the endurance & upstanding qualities of the Thoroughbred, the substance & weight of the Standardbred, the smooth lines & docility of the Morgan, the style & quality of the American Saddle Horse. None in a large measure but all toned to a degree with its component parts that make for traits of its own to mark it as a distinct breed & talented breed.
In the spring of 1886 the future foundation sire of the breed was born in Kentucky. His name was Black Allan ATR# 7623.
A small black stallion that was bred to be a trotting racer, as he was sired by the royally bred Allendorf, his dam was a Morgan mare Maggie Marshall, who’s pedigree contained many champion Morgan racers.
But Allan crashed everyone’s expectations of him being the ‘Great Trotter’ he was bred to be. He only wanted to pace & no amount of training would change him.
He eventually found his home in Tennessee, becoming the property of J.R. Brantley of Manchester, TN.At the age of 23 Allan was purchased by Albert Dement of Wartrace, TN. Dements dream was to produce a breed of horse that would perform the running walk naturally. Allen bred approx. 111 mares the last year of his life. He passed away at the ripe old age of 24 on September, 16,1910.
It wasn’t until April 27, 1935 that the Walking Horse Owner’s joined together to form The Tennessee Walking Horse Breeder’s Association of America. Following his death Allen was renamed Allan F-1 & was accepted as the Foundation Sire of the Tennessee Walking Horse breed.
Allan F-1 was truly a great sire of walking horse. He sired Roan Allen F-38 & Hunter’s Allen F-10, whom many believed to have been great or if not greater, than the first Allan.
Before his death Allen was bred to Gertrude, a red roan with four white stockings & bald face. Her pedigree was filled with great foundation sires of the American Saddlebred, Morgan & Standardbred.
Together they produced Roan Allen F-38, foaled May 23, 1904.
Roan Allen was a real show horse who could perform not only the Flat Walk & Running Walk, but he could also perform the Fox Walk, Fox Trot, Slow Gait, Rack, & the Square Trot. He had a long over-reach & a nodding head.
Roan Allen sired many great walkers.
Merry Boy & Wilson’s Allen which are two great stallions that virtually all Waking Horses trace back to:
Wilson’s Allen sired such greats as:
Strolling Jim, Melody Maid, Hayne’s Peacock, City Girl
Pride Of Memphis & the immortal Midnight Sun.
Merry Boy sired such greats as:
Old Glory, Wilson’s Merry Boy, Black Angel & Merry Go Boy
He also had the distinction for siring great producing mares.
Another was his famous daughter Merry Legs F-4 was outstanding. She was by Nell Dement F-3 *100% American Saddlebred breeding. Of Merry Legs is was said that a nucleus was formed, and the Allen Kingdom of horses was further expanded. As evidence of the influence of the Allen strain.
Tennessee Walking Horse pedigree’s also show the dominant force of the Hals.
Walking Horse of Today
Today this wonderful breed has become a pleasure mount that has become a popular mount for trail riding because of its comfortable gait. Also a winner in the show ring for its conformation, manners, & gaits.
The Walking Horse of today averages 15 ½ hands.
Colors ranging from:
Black, Chestnut, Bay, Brown, Roan, White, Grey, Sorrel, Champagne, Palomino, Perlino
There are also: Tobiano, Sabino, Tovero, Overo
With the mane & tails being long & full.
Their head markings – Star, Snip, Blaze, Bald, Strip
Legs often have socks or stockings, white is sometimes found on the body mostly in Roan & Sabino
The general conformation of the Walking Horse is intelligent & neat head. Well-shaped & pointed ears, bright eyes & a tapered muzzle.
They are short in the back, deep in the body & well ribbed, full in the flanks & of good proportion & width in the chest.
Their necks are of sufficient length and are graceful in proportion & is set on well muscled shoulders that are sloping. Hair is soft & silky. Bone is smooth, dense & hard. They are rugged and durable but are free of coarseness.
They are proverbially intelligent !!
The disposition of the Walking Horse is unique. It is, by its nature, a loyal & affectionate animal which is highly intelligent, even tempered & of a kindly disposition. Because of the gentle makeup of this breed, it is an ideal companion for both young & old. They are known as the “Gentleman of the Equines”
The Walking Horse has 3 Natural Gaits. All being free & easy.
The flat-foot walk, the running walk & the canter. All three of which are natural smooth gaits.
The Flat walk is the slowest of the three.
Being bold, even & comfortable carriage for the rider.
1949 – The Flat-foot Walk
It is not a casual walk but it is a somewhat spirited walk with a speed of from 4 to 5 miles an hour. It was described as a “square on four corners” and is executed with ease & grace
The Running walk is a faster movement & gives the rider a sensation of “gliding.” Hence the term “The Walking Horse a ride with a glide”
1949 – The Running Walk in a sense, has made this horse a distinct breed. The speed varies from 6 to 8 miles per hour. This is an acceleration of the flat-foot walk & the gait he assumes naturally when urged out of the walk. The steps are lengthened, his head nods, all this in such a symmetry of action that the rider is spared the jar & jolts that so often go with horseback riding. Rather a gliding sensation & skimming along. This is not an exhausting gait & the horse can go along for some time at this gait.
In the execution of the running walk many horses overstep the front track 6 to 18 inches. This determines the “stride” and a long stride is conducive to greater speed & ease in the saddle.
The Canter is a rise & fall movement.
It is a refined gallop with spring & rhythm but without jar or jolt to the rider.
The canter is the rocking chair motion, which, of course, any horse can do, but all cannot do it with satisfaction to the rider. When done properly it is a slow rocking to & fro with relaxation for the horse & comfort to the rider.
The horse that properly does this rolling motion is known as the doing the ” Rocking Chair Canter”