May 1917: Old Rosebud’s half-brother Mars Cassidy dies under suspicious circumstances

“The stewards to-day issued a ruling barring from the turf C. R. Anderson and R. Holcomb, the former the owner of the horse Mars Cassidy and the latter the trainer. Mars Cassidy died early this morning and an investigation by the officials followed. The horse started in the seventh race Tuesday and when he went to the post he appeared like a wild horse. He ran a disgraceful race, finishing last beaten off.

The ruling is as follows:
“C. R. Anderson, owner and R. Holcomb, trainer, are ruled off the turf under the provisions of rule 202, Kentucky Racing Commission. Should the owner decide to make a bona fide sale of the horse of the stars Bars and Stars to anyone in good standing he can do so.”

Veterinarians worked until far into the night with Mars Cassidy, but to no avail. He was a useful horse during his racing career, having a number of stakes and handicaps to his credit. He was capable of running six furlongs in 1:12, and his most recent good race was when he beat Chalmers on last Saturday.” (Louisville Courier-Journal, 05/10/1917)


“Lexington, Ky., May 9. – Mars Cassidy, the five-year-old half-brother of Old Rosebud, by Ogden out of Ivory Bells, died early this morning as a result of the drugs administered to him before the closing race yesterday, and as a consequence C. R. Anderson and R. Holcomb were this afternoon ruled off the turf by Presiding Judge Thomas J. Clay. The horse raced in the name of R. M. Anderson, who is not here and a brother of C. R. Anderson.

The death of the horse has aroused against the practice of doping horses, which took the form this afternoon of a declaration on the part of one who has influence at Frankfort that he will ask Governor Stanley to back a bill at the next session of the Legislature making it a felony, punishable by confinement in the penitentiary, for the administration of drugs to horses with a view to stimulating them for racing purposes, or the reverse of that. It further has served to bring out strongly the need of a veterinarian at each track, whose sole duty shall be to inspect all horses entering the paddock for each race.” (Cincinnati Enquirer, 05/10/1917)


“Lexington, Ky., May 11. – C. R. Anderson, owner of Mars Cassidy, the race horse, which died at the Kentucky Association track Tuesday night, who was arrested on a charge of cruelty to animals, was dismissed this morning on the charge by Justice W. A. Ahern. Only three witnesses were examined. They were James P. Ross, superintendent of the association; Lon McCarty, executive secretary of the Humane Society, and Dr. James T. Shannon, veterinarian.

Supt. Ross testified that he saw the horse at different times during the night being led about the ground and that when he went to the stable after the horse’s death, Anderson said: “Mr. Ross, some one has got to my horse and doped him.” Evidence of the other witnesses was insufficient to connect any one with giving stimulants to the horse.”

As a result of the horse’s death the racing stewards ruled Anderson and the trainer, R. Holcomb, off the turf.” (Louisville Courier-Journal, 05/12/1917)

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