History of American Thoroughbred, Daily Racing Form, 1922-12-02


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History of American Thoroughbred Fourteenth Installment. Pegsy, a famed imported mare of the of j time, and grand dam of Tychlus and of the famed Vespra, an Oaks winner, won twenty- B two out of thirty-five races. Imported Shark tl won nineteen. Sir Peter Teazle, seventeen; a Fiorlzel, sixteen, and Highflyer won fourteen. Orville, one of the severest and best vs runners up to the middle of tho nineteenth si century, won about fourteen races, but lost h as many. Dick Andrews won twenty out d of twenty-seven. Diomed won twelve; -Eclipse, eleven ; Matchem, ten ; Herod, ten ; n Trumpator, ton, and Ch.ilde.rs, six or eight, o Of our early American horses, few of them a have won many races. Sir Charles won c twenty, but was sometimes shamefully beat- b en. He distanced both Sir William and 0 Eclipse. Timoleon won only six races. Vir- a ginian won ten. American Eclipso, so famed v at the North, ran only eight races, from four k to nine years old, and made but one really d good race, having beaten second-rate competitors or those that had been worn or i broken down, until he encountered Sir Henry, f which defeat could bo ascribed to misman- -agement. t Other distinguished horses, VIrage, Galla- T tin, Sir Archy, Florizel, Pacolet, Bertrand, 0 Monsieur Tonson, Sally Walker, Mercury, etc, etc., have run about the same number. c , We have no recollection of any other, beside a the famed gelding Leviathan and Black j Maria, winners at twenty miles, whoso 5 achievements were subsequently so splendid. In taking leavo of tho famed Ariel we fl conceive ourselves justified in admitting her g claims to an illustrious lineage and to our admiration for performances that wo think a unparalleled on the pages of early racing . annals. c 8T0RT OF BLACK MARIA. The distinguished subject of our next me- t moir, Black Maria, was bred by Charles c Henrv Hall, of Harlem, N. Y., and was foaled June 15, 1S26. At the age of seven- t teen months she was purchased by John C. Stevens of New York for ,000, and re- c mained in his hands during tho whole of her long and brilliant racing career. She t was by American Eclipse Lady Lightfoot, t by Sir Archy. Her granddam was Black i Maria, by imported Shark; g. g. dam, tiie dam of Vingtun a celebrated racing marc, t by imported Clockfast, half-brother to Medley, by Gimcrack; g. g. g. dam, BurwelVs ; Maria, by Itegulus. 1 Did our limits allow we would gladly de- : vote a few columns to the history of the : 1 illustrious ancestry of the subject of this i : memoir. Wc will remark, in passing, however, that Lady Lightfoot, the dam of Black : : Maria, was the most distinguished racer of ; her day, having won between twenty and 1 thirty races, the majority of which were at ; " four-mile heats. She was never beaten but once, except in her old age her eleventh I year and then by Eclipse on the Union L course. She was bred by the late Col. John j Tayloe, of "Virginia, and was foaled at Bel-Air, Maryland, June, 1812. She was purchased . by Mr. Hall in 1824 from Major . William Jones, of Oyster Bay, L. I., icr ,500. with a bay filly at her foot This filly, called Camilla, died January 5, 1825. Lady Lightfoot subsequently produced: Eclipse Lightfoot, blk. c, by American Eclipse, sold at four years old to a company in New Jersey. 182C Black Maria, blk. f, by Eclipse; sold at twelve years old for ,000. 1828 Screamer, ch. f, by Henry; sold at seventeen months old to W. Livingston for ?5C0. 1829 Terror, br. c, by Eclipse; sold at seven months s old to W. Livingston for ,000. 1S30 Shark, blk. c, by Eclipse; sold -while on the s turf to J. C. Craig for 7,500. 1831 Maria, b. f, by Eclipse; sold at four years 5 old to Col. W. Hampton, of South Carolina for ,000. 1833 Harlem Lass, blk. f, by Shark, hex brother; never trained for racing. 1834 Young Lady Lightfoot, b. f, by Bdipse; retained by Mr. Hall. LADY LIGIITFOOTS DEATH. Lady Lightfoot died from the effects of f a violent cold two days after the last-named I filly was foaled. Of the sire of Black Maria, Eclipse, or of the sire of her dam. Sir p Archy, nothing need be said, the latter r standing unrivalled at his time as the sire e of a host of winners, while Eclipse was equally unrivalled as a winner himself. The grand"dam of Black Maria, another prodigy, was, if possible, still more remarkable. She united not only a great turn of speed to unflinching gameness, but she ran n to her fourteenth year. She was herself a j1 celebrated race mare, by imported Shark, : one of the best racers and stallions England ever produced up to that time. She was s first known as Seldens Maria and, when a a three-year-old, was sold to Mr. Alexander r for ,000, an immense price in those days. In the same year 1799 she was purchased - jointly by Col. John Tayloe, of Virginia, - and Gen. Wade Hampton, of South Carolina, to match Shark. She went into o the stable of the latter under the name of lf Black Maria. General Hampton soon after purchased Colonel Taylors interest in her ;r and not only won his match, but carried off every purse for which he entered her. f. Subsequently she passed into the hands of f Col. W. Alston, of South Carolina, who o ran her a couple of seasons and sold her ;r back to Colonel Tayloe at fourteen years of age for ,500. The figure was then the highest price ever paid for a brood mare. s. A BREEDING RECORB. The produce of no mare in America, up P to the time we are discussing, has ever r realized so large an amount as Lady Lightfoot. ; Though the subject of this memoir was, beyond question, the best of her produce, I" the performances of either Shark or r Bay Maria would alone entitle her to high consideration. Eclipse Lightfoot had a remarkable turn of speed, but was thrown n out of training through distemper and was is soon afterward sold and put into the stud. Screamer, Terror and Young Lady Lightfoot t- never particularly distinguished themselves. 1 The first when three years old received - an injury in his thigh from which !" lie never entirely recovered. Young Lady ly Lightfoot, running with shoes for two years, s. had her feet ruined. The writer saw her sr at her breeders stable and, upon examining ig her feet, found them not only small and id misshapen, but the frog on both forefeet et was entirely gone. Harlem Lass was specially 2- bred for a brood mare and never 2r trained. For the second heat five started, Eliza ki Tteilly being withdrawn. The last three miles as of tliis heat was done in a gallop, neither 2r of j B tl a vs si h d n o a c b 0 a v k d i f t T 0 c a j 5 fl g a . c t c t c t t i t ; 1 : : 1 i : : : ; 1 ; " I L j . . s s 5 f I p r e n a j1 : s a a r - - o of lf ;r f. of f o ;r s. up P r ; I" or r n is t- 1 - !" ly s. her sr ig id et 2- 2r ki as 2r t seeming anxious to make play. At the end the third mile Black Maria took the lead o and kept it thereafter at a killing pace, win- si ning easily at 8 :10. Collier was second and b Busiris was "distanced. This bout changed U the complexion of tilings. It was now Black si Maria against the field and no takers. a Four stripped for the third heat, but the f way in which the black mare cooled our. u showed to those who knew a hawk from a h handsaw that the jig was up, barring acci- c dent It was a side of bacon to a sour apple s no bad thing, as the stable boys as well as 1 myself can vouch. That together with the f corn bread stuck so close to the ribs of Gil in and Ralph that four ounces of salts had no 1 effect on either, except to harden the corn bread and tho bacon and render them four ounces heavier, instead of four pounds the difference between northern and southern weights lighter. Maria took the lead and r kept it, winning easily in 8 :03. Cropper broke I down in the third mile. n Robert L. Stevens had the honor of first throwing his leg over her back. She won her i first mile race in the hands of Frederick, r. "the yellow man," and subsequently was o trained by John Buckley, David Palmer and f Flintoff, though Buckley trained her for most of her great races. She ran a match race in 1829 at the Union d course, L. L, for ,000 in two-mile heats against Colonel William R. Johnsons colt a Brilliant, by Sir Archy Bet Bounce, a three- y year-old. 1 The match was made on blood before either s animal was foaled and naturally excited a I great deal of interest. It was the North c versus the South again. It being the first appearance of both performers, little or noth- r ing was known even by "men of business," or the speed or endurance of either. 1 Black Maria looked like "a good un," but then Brilliant was brought to the post by that first-rate judge and crack trainer Col- i onel Johnson, who showed he knew a "hawk 1 from a handsaw" by offering to pay to 1 be off; but this was "no go" tother party c "knovvd sumut," too, and wouldnt bite. The 1 colonel knew the black lady to be well-born and well-bred, but thinking she might turn out as many other with the same advan- ! tages have done, no better than she would be, he determined rather to pay the ,500 to 1 start Brilliant and so "threw the helve after 9 the hatchet" The pace for the first mile was "as slow as foot could fall," and for three-quarters of the second mile it was anything but a racing one. At the quarter post Brilliant let loose and gained two or three lengths by the rush. This awakened the boy upon Black Maria and he waked up the filly with six or eight such first rate "eye-openers" as brought her, at a slapping pace, three or four lengths ahead at the finish post. Time 4:01. The fillys taking the string to win the heat in such bad time led the backers of Brilliant to believe that his "good fix" would tell in the next heat. In the second heat Brilliant was under intermittent urging from the start. The pace for the first : mile was respectable, but it was evident the . mare was going too much at her ease to : bode any good to the colt. She was kept well together and ready any minute for a rally. The boy on Brilliant tried what cutting would do, but it was of no service. This diamond, though of the Virginia water, shone none the brighter for it. In the last half-mile the colt gave up from being overworked in the early running and the "coal black rose" won without a struggle, in 3 :58. The betting, when the horses were stripped, was generally about even, with the southern colt a slight favorite. After the race Col. Johnson was persuaded, by a gentleman from Quebec, to throw his pearl away for a thousand dol- lars. He subsequently was a winner in Can-; ada. He was afterward purchased by James M. Beall, of Russelville, Ky., for ,-; 000. Over the same course, October 8, 1829, in a Jockey Club purse race for 00, for all ages, in three-mile heats, the following horses started: Black Maria, Major William Jones chestnut mare Lady Flirt and Smith Freemans chestnut horse Sir Charles. Black Maria took the lead from the start and was never headed. She won in a can- ten Again over the Union course, L. I., on May 10, 1830, Col. William R. Johnsons bay mare Slender beat Black Maria. The race was a sweepstakes, ,000 for each starter, at four miles. The starters were: Black Maria, Slender and Walter Livingstons gray mare Betsey Ransom. Slender was the favorite at odds against the field. During the training of Betsey Ran- som the fall previous she had let down in the back sinew of one foreleg and was then purchased by Mr. Livingston as unsound. By the aid of blisters and that grand specific of nature, rest, she had, to appearance, so far surmounted the accident as to induce Mr. Livingston, prior to January 1, 1830, to nom-h inate her for this stake. Unfortunately her leg could not stand the exercise required to put four-mile length in her. She com-r plained much and her work was, of necessity, much curtailed. Her gallops were discon-d tinued at times. She came to the post much too high in flesh and her leg swollen. It was madness to start her. Black Maria fell far short of tiptop order, while Slender was all and all the thing. The race is thus de-s scribed : MARIA TAKES LEAD. They were off well together, Maria taking the lead, followed closely by Betsey Ransom, Slender trailing a little. In this way they went along at a clever rate, well in hand, for the first mile and a quarter, each wait-ir ing for the other to make play. In going down the backstretch in the second mile Slender let out a little and lapped Betsy Ran-u som, running up to Black Maria. The latters rider set her upon her legs and all three went the pace until they arrived at the rise of the ground at the termination of the straight run on the back side, Here Billy Clark took the bay mare firmly in hand, while Black Maria led round the north turn, with Betsey Ransom close up. When they entered the quarter stretch toward the termination of the second round Slender again let out and all came up the straight run at a rattling pace, the black marc still leading the gray in her former position and they bay still waiting upon them, Thus they entered upon the third mile and passed the south turn. When they arrived at the connencement of the straight run on the back part, it was evident Betsey Ransom faltered. Her fine, regular stride was gone and she clambered and was all aboard. Slender passed in her t o si b U si a f u h c s 1 f in 1 r I n i r. o f d a y 1 s I c r 1 i 1 1 c 1 steady stroke. Betsey Ransom continued -to drop rapidly and, being completely let : down, was stopped near the termination of the third mile. Black Maria and Slender were now going the last mile and had advanced full half way round the first turn. The latter was collected and in hand, ready for a dash. As soon as they commenced the stretch, on the back side, she made play, ran up and challenged, and a sharp rally ensued for about sixty rods. The set-to commenced too early and the distance from home was too long for Black Maria to live through. The length began to tell and, although her rider put her under urging, it would not do. Slender came in front at the end of the straight side and swept boldly around the last turn. The black mares chance was now out while the bay entered upon the last quarter stretch good style, winnig in a canter. Time, 1:5S. SLENDER IS KILLED. Slender, the beautiful winner of thi3 race, was killed the May following by an accident received in a race with Collier and Eliza Reilly at Norfolk, Va. It occurred in running four-mile heats. The three entries were locked in the second mile, Slender having the inside track. When all three were making play for the lead, Slender struck one of her feet against the railing and fell. The shock was so great as to deprive her of all motion and she lay apparently lifeless on the track, whence she was immediately removed. Every effort was made to revive her, but it appeared, upon examination, that her spine was broken and that she had received some internal hurts which rendered recovery impossible. She died at 10 oclock the samp night. Her fate excited general sympathy and a deep-felt regret in the gallant turfman to whom this fine animal belonged. To him her nominal value was of little consequence, but she was a favorite. Her rider escaped unhurt Betsey Ransom, then owned by Robert L. Stevens, was sent to England in 1834 in company with his celebrated mare Polly Hopkins. They went out in foal to Eclipse. The former had a filly foal and the latter a colt foal, both of which were imported in their yearling form. The filly, called Jessica, was sold and sent to Missouri, where P. C. Bush ran her : with credit at the fall meeting of the St Louis Jockey Club over the Sulphur Springs course. In England the two mares were bred to the most fashionable stallions of the day. In 1837 a yearling filly by Priam and another by Emilius came over and shortly afterward Betsey Ransom herself followed. On May 19, 1830, on the Dutchess County course, Poughkeepsie, N. Y., a race of three-mile heats for a Jockey Club purse of 00 was contested by Black Maria, Major William Jones chestnut mare Lady Flirt General Bedells bay filly Jeannett and William H. Minges bay colt Mayday. No particulars of this race have come to our knowledge otherwise than that it was said to have been "won handily." The Jeannett run by General Bedell must not be confounded with Mr. Stevens Janette, sister to Sir Charles. Mayday was standing at Buckingham Courthouse, Va., in 1837, since which wc have lost sight of him. On October 7, 1830, over the same course, in four-mile heats for a Jockey Club purse of 00, Black Maria vanquished Joseph H. Van Maters Leopold, John Buckleys Lady Hunter and Lady Flirt, entered by Major William Jones. It was a fine race between Leopold and Lady Hunter, neither being able to put up the winner. Black Maria finished first with ease. It will be noted that Lady Flirt which beat Black Maria in her previous race, was distanced by her in this with ease. ANOTHER FINE CONTEST. A capital race was run on the same course October 27, 1830, in four-mile heats, for a Jockey Club purse of 00. Black Maria cut out the work with a long rating stroke for Leopold, Mr. Parkers Peggy Madee, Thomas Pearsalls Medora and Lady Hunter, and was never headed after the start in either heat. At the Union course. Long Island, May 12, 1S31, Colonel William R. Johnsons gray filly Bonnets o Blue won both four-mile heats for a Jockey Club purse of 00, defeating Black Maria and Dr. Alexander Hosacks chestnut horse St George. The latter was outdistanced. Bonnets o Blue, a superior race mare, became equally celebrated in the breeding stud. She was sold to Mr. Gibbons for ,500. No further particulars of this race are furnished by the turf journals of the day. To be continued.

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Library of Congress Record: https://lccn.loc.gov/unk82075800