1904: Broodmares that are gold mines

“Lexington, Ky., January 16. – Should one desire to inaugurate a guessing contest and hear the patriarchs expatiate on the fabulous sums which have come to the lucky owners of good producing mares, he has but to drop into Horseman’s Headquarters with the query “How much will that bay colt by Sir Dixon, out of Bonnie Blue II, that’s down at Raceland Stud, fetch when he gets to the sale ring as a yearling next June?”

This youngster is an own brother to Blue Girl, Blues and Blue Ribbon, a trio that, combined, have won over $130,000 on the turf. Bonnie Blue II has only had five foals, the three stars named above, this youngster and a colt now a two-year-old in the stable of Captain S. S. Brown. Her last two foals, sold at public sale, have brought over $18,000, an as this is said to be the grandest looker the mare has ever dropped the changes seem rosy for him bringing close to the record price.

This great mare promises to be a veritable gold mine for her owner, Catesby Woodford, he having already realized over $23,000 by the sale of her produce at yearling time, and he still has this youngster to bring more money into the Raceland Farm treasury, and the famous mare is now only 13 years old.

When the late celebrated horseman, Byron McClelland, died he left as a legacy to his widow several of the most valuable pieces of property in this city, but not one of the buildings, of which one is Lexington’s only skyscraper, has proved a better paying investment than the great mare, Sallie McClelland, which he also left to the widow. For four foals out of this mare Mrs. McClelland has received the snug some of $21,400, and the famous stud matron seemingly has yet years of usefulness before her. Of these four foals His Lordship, still owned by his original purchaser, J. D. Smith, brought her $8,400; Saratoga Belle, a young mare in the stud at Hamburg Place, cost J. E. Madden $6,000; Audience, Captain S. S. Brown’s great filly, swelled her bank account $4,500, and Gorman & Bauer gave her $2,500 for Martha Gorman, the two-year-old sister to Audience.

Perhaps the greatest money-making mare, as a producer for her owner was imp. Cinderella, which was the property of Dr. J. D. Neet, of Versailles, the final sale of her breeding qualities to W. C. Whitney, the Woodford County physician, cleared right at $100,000 on the English mare.

George H. Clay bought his Balgowan breeding establishment from proceeds of the sale of yearlings thrown by the noted Ballet. Her sons and daughters were annually sold at that tender age, enriching their owner $30,000.

After realizing $50,000 on the sale of the yearlings out of Maud Hampton, Major B. G. Thomas sold the old mare for $18,300, and the sale of the produce of Quesal, which he still owns, has already brought him thousands of dollars.

Out of his savings as a clerk O. D. Randolph bought Manola Mason for a small figure. She threw McChesney, E. E. Smathers’s $30,000 horse, and in a few years has only to live to bring him in a thousand fold on his investment.

The same good fortune is in store for H. A. Engman, the owner of Katy of the West. She has already thrown Hermis, and suddenly became valuable as a gold mine as a producer.

Because she was slightly crippled a buyer could not be found for Jamaica for quite a time. Finally Luke Broadhead, manager of Woodford Farm, then in its glory, secured her for A. J. Alexander. She threw the great Foxhall, and then her yearlings commanded fabulous sums, she bringing in this way in the neighborhood of $60,000 into the strong box of Alexander.

Theodore Winters passed a check for $300 to the owner of Marian when the mare was just out of training. Some of her produce he raced and won a fortune on them. Later he sold her sons and daughters and all told realized over $123,000 on his $300 investment, her last colt alone bringing [ILLEGIBLE].

For the last few years Captain J. B. Clay has kept up the expenses of the Iroquois Stud and his other interests on the sale of the produce of the dams of Major Daingerfield and Lady Schorr. The latter’s last colt sold for $6,400, and the sale of Mon Droit’s recent produce have brought him thousands of dollars. F. B. Harper won with and sold the sons and daughters of Belle Knight for over $100,000. She cost him the insignificant sum of $62.50.

A barrel of whisky was the price Colonel E. F. Clay gave for Fancy Jane. She threw Miss Woodford and the Bourbon breeder thus got a fortune for his liquor. He also got Mercedes out from between the shafts of Wickliffe Preston’s buggy and her produce brought to Runnymede $50,000.

Semper Idem, the dam of the great Longstreet, for seasons brought an average of $3,000 a year income to her owner, C. B. Hawkins and the very successful racing firm of Eastin & Larrable scored their marvelous triumphs with horses out of a few mares they owned, which later they sold in a lump for a fortune to J. B. Haggin.

The stud books teem with incidents of marvelous successes made by a small investment in thoroughbred mares, and there are also numerous cases where even fancy priced mares causing an outlay of nearly all the capital of the investor, have in the end won a fortune for their owner. Thora, Brademante and Duchess are incidents of the latter type.

With the dams of such horses as McChesney, Hermis and Dick Welles in the hands of men whose combined stud matrons scarcely exceed a dozen mares, it can be seen what a rival the small breeder has become to the millionaire who controls his thousands of acres and his brood mares on every hill. It also shows that it is about the only business in these times of settled affairs that it is possible for a man to chance two or three hundred dollars and make a hundred thousand on the deal.” (Cincinnati Enquirer, 01/17/1904)


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