Remarkable Dams

Just as there were certain lines of sires that grew stronger than others, there were maternal lines that seemed to possess a lot of talent and speed. These families are special since they also seem to be able to leave their good genes to next generation and next and next... And so on even until today.


Colonel Morgan in Cincinnati, Ohio had a good road mare by Abdallah, out of a mare by Engineer 2nd. This Colonel Morgan mare showed speed and endurance and when sent to Kentucky and bred to Cassius M. Clay Jr. (22), she left Nettie Clay. Nettie Clay was never trained for racing and she was sold to George C. Stevens, a large breeder of trotters in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

minnehaha1.jpg (56551 bytes) In 1868 Nettie Clay foaled a filly by Bald Chief and the filly was named Minnehaha. As a yearling Minnehaha was sold to L.J. Rose, San Mateo, California. In California she was trained but by people who knew nothing of horse training and Minnehaha was foundered.   Instead she was bred to The Moor and in 1872 she foaled Beautiful Bells. Beautiful Bells was purchased by Leland Stanford in 1879 and as a broodmare at Palo Alto Farm she got the nickname "The Empress of Broodmares". She was the first mare in history to have ten foals in the Standard list.
One of Beautiful Bells foals were a stallion called Chimes, by Electioneer 125. As a two-year-old he was sold to C.J. Hamlin of Old Village Farm. Chimes was trained but retired early due to a bad quarter crack. When placed in service at Village Farm he sired The Abbot, the world's champion trotter of the time.

Minnehaha was a great broodmare and she had many foals but she was only mated with The Moor and his sons and grandsons. Her first foal was Beautiful Bells, the queen of Palo Alto Farm, and her sixth foal was another mare foaled in 1879, who got the name Eva, by Sultan 1513. It was through Eva that the line of this maternal family would grew. From Eva came the Thompson sisters, Tillie (f.1890), Madam (f.1891) and Lydia (f.1892) all by Guy Wilkes. These three sisters were obtained by Patchen Wilkes Farm and much of the family went back to Kentucky. From Tillie and Madam Thompson the family grew strong while Lydia Thompson only got one foal, a gelding called Peter Thompson, who won the Kentucky Futurity in 1911.

This family has produced both good trotters and good pacers and from Tillie's branch there are pacers like Armbro Feather, Follow My Star, Ceasars Jackpot, Race Time, Storm Damage, Dancer Hanover, Thorpe Hanover, Kentucky Spur and Shady Daisy. Among good trotters from Tillie's branch you will find Hoot Mon,  Miss Tilly, Duenna, Crevette, Davidia Hanover, Steve Lobell, Speed Bowl, Brisco Hanover, Spotlite Lobell, and David Raymond.

The branch through Madam Thompson is not as large as Tillie's but you will find trotters like Speedy Somolli, Victory Dream, Legend Hanover, Diller Hanover, Workaholic, Royal Troubador and Wesgate Crown. You also find pacers like Happy Escort, Overtrick, Bullet Hanover, Ensign Hanover, Jenna's Beach Boy, Village Connection and Flight Director.

Eva f.1879 Miss Pierette f.1912
Sultan The Moor Clay Pilot
Belle of Wabash
Sultana Delmonico
Minnehaha Bald Chief Bay Chief
Dolly Spanker
Nettie Clay C.M.Clay Jr. 22
by Abdallah
Peter the Great Pilot Medium Happy Medium
Santos Grand Sentinel
Madam Thompson Guy Wilkes George Wilkes
Lady Bunker
Eva Sultan


The founder of this family was a mare called Medio foaled 1887, sired by Cooper Medium. This Cooper Medium was a stallion with a mind of his own and probably not a very popular horse due to that fact but he sired Medio and got himself a place in history. Major F.P. Johnson brought Medio from Muir to Lexington with the intention to breed her to King Clay. But at this time D.C. Parmenter of Berlin, Wisconsin established his Riverside Park and he went to Kentucky to buy the basic stock. He not only bought Medio but also her daughter Marble (f.1903), by King Clay and they went north.
Marble had inherited the unruliness that ran in the family and she also passed it on to her daughter Bertha C. (f.1910), by Baronmore. Bertha C. was not an easy horse but when she wanted to trot, she showed blinding speed. Bertha C. was later register as Miss Bertha C. and sold to A.B. Coxe and went to Pennsylvania. Mr. Coxe went to Lexington in search for a colt that he could race and that would also be a potential sire. He found Dillon Axworthy, a son of Axworthy, and he bred him to Miss Bertha C. The foal born in 1914 was Miss Bertha Dillon. She was to become a champion but when Mr. Coxe died in 1926 Lawrence B. Sheppard purchased all the horses and moved them to Hanover Shoe Farm.

missberthadillon1.jpg (35253 bytes)Miss Bertha Dillon was sent to one of the most famous Kentucky stallions, Peter Volo, and she produced three daughters with two-minute speed, Miss Bertha Hanover (f.1926), Hanover's Bertha (f.1927) and Charlotte Hanover (f.1928).

Excellent trotters like Egyptian Candor, Green Speed, Mack Lobell, American Winner, Peace Corps, Sea Cove, Arndon, Mr. Vic, Enjoy Lavec, Act of Grace and Victory Tilly can be traced to Miss Bertha Hanover. From the branch of Hanover's Bertha you will find Shirley Hanover, Blaze Hanover, Britelite Lobell, Giant Force, Lookout Victory, Imageofa Clear Day and Mr. Drew and from Charlotte Hanover came Timothy T., Christoper T. and Cold Comfort.

This family are also responsible for great pacers and they came through three daughters of Miss Bertha Dillon, Miss Bertha Worthy, Charlotte Hanover and Bertha Hanover. The Miss Bertha Worthy-branch gave us horses like Bret Hanover, Baron Hanover, Bonjour Hanover, Sir Dafrae and Delinquent Account.
From Charlotte Hanover came Dragon's Lair and from the branch of Bertha Hanover came Artsplace, Cambest, Areba Areba, Merger and Best of All.

However, there are two other branches from Medio that doesn't go through Miss Bertha Dillon. One is Jane Dillon foaled in 1919 and a sister to Miss Bertha Dillon. From this branch came the pacer Armbro Mackintosh. The other is Ariel Wilkes foaled in 1899 and a daughter of Medio.  From her you will find the trotting mare Duchess Faye and Delray Lobell.

Medio f.1887 Miss Bertha Dillon f.1914
Cooper Medium Happy Medium Hambletonian
Queen Mam. Champion
Mag Cooper
Topsey Mambrino King Mam. Patchen
by Edwin Forrest
Not Traced Not Traced
Not Traced
Dillon Axworthy Axworthy Axtell
Adioo Dillon Sidney Dillon
Miss Bertha C. Baronmore Baron Wilkes
May Wagner
Marble King Clay

Foundation Mares
Minnehaha and Medio.
Jessie Pepper and Kathleen.
Mamie and Midnight.
Mambrino Beauty and Maid of Honor.
Maggie H. and Esther.
Miss Copeland and Miss Duvall.