“Cleopatra, justly celebrated mare, famous alike on turf and at stud, belonging to W. R. Coe, dropped dead in her stall at Shoshone Farm, about six miles from Lexington, Sunday night, May 15th. The day before she had dropped a chestnut colt by Pennant and was apparently in good condition. The night watchman had visited her stall shortly before her death. An autopsy revealed the mare’s death was due to a ruptured aneurysm of the posterior iliac artery.
Cleopatra was a chestnut mare, foaled in 1917, by Corcyra out of imported Gallice by Gallinule, her dam St. Cecilia by St. Serf. She was foaled at the Claiborne Farm of A. B. Hancock, who had purchased her dam Gallice abroad, which carrying to Corcyra. She was sold as a yearling at Saratoga and purchased by W. R. Coe.
Cleopatra was one of the best race mares of her day, racing and winning as a two and three-year-old. During this time she started in twenty six races, of which she won eight, was ten times placed and four times third, finishing out of the money on only four occasions. At two, she won the Champagne Stakes, while at three, her victories included the Pimlico Oaks, Coaching Club American Oaks, Alabama Stakes, Huron Handicap and Latonia Championship Stakes, one and three-quarters miles in which she established a new track record, and took into camp such good colts as On Watch, Damask, John P. Grier, and Best Pal.
Cleopatra’s success, as was the case with so many great race mares, did not end with her retirement. She had her first foal in 1922, a bay colt by Sun Briar, which died. Then came her illustrious and appropriately named son, the Futurity winner Pompey, stakes winner of thirteen races and $143,495 and now one of the most successful among the younger generation of sires; Selene, a winner; Caesarion, winner Champlain Handicap; Nile Maiden, a winner; Laughing Queen, sister to Pompey and winner of the Selima Stakes, and the two-year-old full sister to Pompey and Laughing Queen, Sunny Queen, one of the most highly thought of youngsters in Mr. Coe’s stable at Belmont Park.” (Thoroughbred Record (Vol. 115, No. 21), 05/21/1932)