The Lost Trotting Parks Storyboard Archives

The Lost Trotting Parks Storyboard Archives

Monday, July 15, 2013

Additions to the Lost Trotting Parks Display at the Maine Farm Bureau in Augusta

Starting Monday, July 15th the Nelson storyboard from the American Agriculturist (1891) and seven other storyboards will be on display at the Maine Farm Bureau. 

The Farm Bureau Conference Room Display includes Aroostook County Potato Bag and Logo Art created by the Maine Bag Company between 1940 and 1970, Farm Family Storyboards, Lost Trotting Parks Storyboards, Storyboards on Hartland's Lost Trotting Park, Storyboards on Maine Harness Horsemen, Storyboards on the P.H. Reed Family of Fort Fairfield, and a Maine Horse Council Storyboard.

To learn more about Nelson 4209, explore the 80 plus posts on Nelson created by Stephen Thompson and posted to Maine's Online Museum, The Lost Trotting Parks Heritage Center. The research on the horse Nelson is a joint venture with Clark P. Thompson.

The Directors of the Lost Trotting Parks Heritage Center greatly appreciate the opportunity given the Center by the Maine Farm Bureau to display the stories and images of Maine's agricultural heritage.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Track and Stable Gossip -- Kennebec Journal -- May 8, 1895

P.H. Reed of Fort Fairfield traded Queen Nelson to
C.H. Nelson of Waterville for Reed Wilkes.

P.H. Reed, originally from Madison, Maine
Reed's sense of adventure led him to Aroostook County.

E.L. Houghton's two-months-old colt by Reed Wilkes, trial 2.16 1/2, dam Jenny, is a beauty. Reed Wilkes, it will be remembered is a son of Red Wilkes, the greatest son of George Wilkes, and is the property of P.H. Reed of Fort Fairfield. Jenny is by Old Abe, trial 2.22 in "old times," by Flying Morgan, by Old Drew, and is the dam of Fearless. "Favorite Fearless: who has enjoyed a popularity in that section greater than that of almost any other horse, and who has proved himself an excellent stock horse. More than this, she is the dam of Queen, 2/19 3/4, by Nelson, 2.09. Queen is now owned by C.H. Nelson, owner of the great Nelson, and may be watched for a low mark this summer. Queen was bred by P.H. Reed, and was formerly known as Queen Nelson. Mr. Reed exchanged her more than a year ago with Mr. Nelson for Reed Wilkes.

Article from the research files of Clark P. Thompson, Bangor, Maine

Monday, July 8, 2013

Ladies Hold the Ribbons at the East Somerset Agricultural Society's Trotting Park

This morning I attempted to find out the story behind the recently purchased high wheel sulky. Rusty Farrin, the auctioneer, told me that the sulky belonged to a doctor from Hartland, Maine. My search led me to Barbara Nutter-Brown. Barbara was going to speak with her mother later in the day to see if any information could be found on the doctor and his sulky. No word yet! However, the conversation brought me two newspaper articles on the fairgrounds and trotting in Hartland that provided content for the following storyboard. Many thanks to Barbara for the articles! 

To read the text in the following storyboard, please open in a new window and enlarge.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

The Lost Trotting Parks Heritage Center Purchases a High Wheel Sulky at Auction

Ernest Lowell and Molly Alexander contacted me regarding the opportunity to purchase a high wheel sulky that the Maine State Museum had placed at Farrin's Country Auctions. Both Ernie and Molly believed that the sulky was of wonderful quality being more than 120 years old. In 1892, the bicycle wheel sulky was invented and became an overnight sensation immediately putting the high wheel sulky into obsolescence. The auction also included sleighs, wagons, and farm equipment. All drawn by horses. Several of the items would have symbolized farming in the 1930's with farm equipment pulled by horses. I do not know the full story regarding why these items would placed in auction. There were many items that would never be part of a historical display. However, the farm equipment was of display quality. I was told that before the Maine State Museum places items at auction, they check with other museums in Maine that might want the items. According to my source, there was no interest on part of Maine's agricultural related museums. For more of the items at this auction, I could understand why other museums were not interested. Perhaps many of the museums already had similar items in their collections. I have visited the museums at the agricultural fairs and several Maine historical societies with farm equipment. The items sold were in my opinion of better quality. Many items were purchased by Mainers. However, many of the farm equipment was purchased for resale at an auction in Wisconsin. Being the son of an Aroostook County potato farmer and seeing the images of my grandfather farming with horse drawn equipment, I was a bit upset knowing that a part of Maine's agricultural heritage was either leaving Maine or perhaps being put back into service. In my view, future generations have lost the opportunity to view farm equipment that tells the story of Maine farmers when horses were key to farm operations.

On Monday, July 8, 2013, I called the Maine State Museum to see if there might be more information on the high wheel sulky. The Museum staff person informed me that the sulky was donated in 1971 by a Dr. Sennett from Machias, Maine.