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Image 8 of Fairs and fair makers of Kentucky. Volume II

Part of Kentucky Works Progress Administration Publications

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j — 192 - FAIRS AND FAIR MAKERS ` A word as to the stock seen at the fair. If Kentucky-bred, the chances are - that the horses are Thoroughbred, Standard-bred, or American saddle horse. Under , similar conditions the cattle will be Hereford, Shorthorn, Angus, Jersey, and I Holstein; the sheep, Hampshire and Southdown; the hogs, Berkshire, Duroc-Jersey, > Poland China, and Hampshire. The leading poultry breeds of the State are Rhode V Island Red, Barred and White Rock, White Wyandotte, and the Single Combed White and Brown Leghorn. ·· The Thoroughbred is one of the oldest of horses, derived from the light, durable, swift horses of Arabia and of the Barbary coast. The standard-bred, or A trotter, and the American saddle horse are essentially Thoroughbred, bred for especial types of performance. The saddle horse is Kentucky's own, developed T during the mid—nineteenth century in the Bluegrass, where during the same period, great development of Denmark's trotting blood took place. T `Nith cattle, a like fondness for the proved is evident. The Hereford is as _ ancient as any English breed; was for hundreds gf years the plow-ox of the rich ‘ ‘ farmlands of Herefordshire and the surrounding region, The Shorthorn is new in 2 name only. Formerly called the Durham, after the English county of that name, it g came, improved by selective breeding but virtually unchanged in blood, out of the _. ancient Teeswater and Holderness cattle of northeastern England. The Aberdeen- Q Angus came out of the mists of time down from the hills of Aberdeenshire and Q Angus, north of the Scottish border. Among dairy breeds, what is known in America Q as the Holstein has been bred in Holstein and Friesland for at least two thousand F years; and the Jersey and the Guernsey had, before coming to America, lived on g the Channel Islands nearly that long. Q The· Southdown and its. near relative, the Hampshire, won out more than L a century ago over the many breeds of that time as the_best for the small farmer E wanting a dual-purpose sheep-- one that produced a fleece of fine-textured wool, Q and at the same time dropped lambs early enough to reach the "hothouse" or spring g market. . , . - p _ Q The poultry breeds most frequently seen at the fair also are among the older Q and well tested breeds. E BACKGROUNDS OF THE MODERN FAIR .2; ;> The State Fairs, of which that of Kentucky_is an excellent example, origi- Q nated in the temporary markets set up, in the long-forgotten days, where they T would serve the bartering needs of the largest possible number of people. Out of g such beginnings grew the great fairs of the Middle Ages-- fairs that continued E for weeks and even for months, as did the fair at Nizhni-Novgorod, where buyers 5 and sellers from all over eastern Europe and western Asia met annually to inter- E change wares and, incidentally, ideas. This great: Russian fair is cited as an { example of like fairs held throughout western Europe until the coming of modern é transportation. . · . , g Lesser fairs of the same sort, temporary markets with all the accompanying g side show business of clowning, music, dancing,.fortune telling, puppet theaters, g wrestling, and the like grew up throughout Europe, and, by the time the English , d headed westward across the Atlantic, they had become a recognized part of the § British trading system. The great cattle fair at Smithfield, near London, in full g flower during the latter part of the eighteenth century, is mentioned as a not- E able market where breeders from all over England met, sold their cattle, and Q carefully observed the type of stock land sort of finish for which buyers, repre-