Posted in Instructors, Trainers and Clinicians

Dawn Roth, Dressagemanship™

“Helping one horse and human together at a time.” –Dawn RothWeb Dawn-Roth-Logo-Dressagemanship

Dawn Roth’s desire to create a holistic approach that embraces the relationship between rider and horse created Dressagemanship, a combination of dressage, classical in hand work and foundational horsemanship. Dressagemanship is a training program that is for any equestrian discipline: Western; English; Eventing; Endurance; and trail riding.  Roth has likened her program to “yoga for horses” encouraging balance, energy and body work for everyday horses and riders.LordyDawnStretch

Mutual understanding and respect between horse and human is what Roth strives to promote in her sessions.  One-on-one or small group work is preferred to develop the mutual language of the horse and human in Dressagemanship. Roth says that the practice of consistency and fairness develop the lightness and softness of the horse that results in confidence between the human and horse.

Roth designs her sessions around how the human and the horse learn.  They may not be equally matched when beginning the process, but through development and understanding each receives the guidance needed to succeed.Gallop_FL_2013 Consistency and flexibility are paramount to gauging the progress of the pair. Identifying progress comes in many forms, especially if the horse and human progress at different rates.  The horse may understand quicker than the human and vice versa. Roth will use a variety of techniques, such as helping the human gain understanding through the use of another horse or keeping a quickly progressing horse interested until its human counterpart catches up.

LibertyPlayRoth believes that listening and learning how to listen are keys to success in this program. She would like readers to know she is dedicated to the process. She says, “I want clients to fall in love with the journey of the partnership. I am committed to guiding them to be the best they can be and being the best I can be to share the journey.”SittingonMerlinTeachingSept2014

Roth Dressagemanshipoffers distance learning as well as small sessions and one-on-one sessions. Please connect with the following links: Website:

Click on the logo for Dressagemanshipon Facebook


© MarshTackyTales 2018

Facebook for Dressagemanship:

Posted in Artists, Activists and Historians

The Line in the Sand

Please take a moment to watch the trailer produced by Terry Windell/MELT, LLC.

A few years ago Terry interviewed me about the children’s book I authored and Jackie McFadden illustrated for the documentary. The documentary is still in process, here is the trailer. You can purchase your copy of Beach Race Champion, featuring equestrian jockey Brittany Stevens, riding Marsh Tacky Molly to victory on the sandy beach. Please check out the Facebook Page for the trailer. Marsh Tacky Horses still need your support!

Watch the trailer here:

(c) MarshTackyTales 2018

Posted in Artists, Activists and Historians

Furusiyya, or Horsemanship Literature Interview with Hylke Hettema

Hylke Hettema, is a Phd. candidate at Leiden University, Netherlands. Her main focus of study is the connection between the horse and Arab identity. Her research includes translating Arabic, studying 19th century texts and art related to the Arabian horse. Hettema explains, Exploring the narratives based on both Western and Eastern memories throughout history will lead to a better understanding of the situation in which the concept of a desert horse came to life.”

36312805_1802714936432141_33157740230606848_n She is currently presenting at the World Conference for Middle Eastern Studies 2018 (WOCMES 2018) conference at the University of Seville, Spain. Check out her blog Remembering a Desert Horse. Hettema will also be presenting at Equine History Collective  (EHC) in November 2018.

Hettema notes that it is commonly held that early furūsiyya literature  (horsemanship literature) is the record of a pre-Islamic horse culture. Those medieval Arabic works on horses have been the base for the memory of a medieval Arab horse culture, and that memory is subsequently used to justify the existence, breed standard and phenotype of the Arabian horse today.

Hettema has always loved horses and became a breeder of Arabian horses when she moved to the Middle East.  Her fascination with history led her to ask questions that the breeding community could not adequately answer; breeding and oral history are very sensitive subjects in the equine world. Hettema used her skills as an academic to search for information about the origin of the breed, she soon realized,  “…the actual titles included in the body of medieval Arabic works on horses were not written during the pre-Islamic period, we need to question the current assumptions that the Arabian horse breed was created and actively bred by pre-Islamic Arabs.”

(c) Marsh Tacky Tales 2018




Posted in Artists, Activists and Historians, History of the Marsh Tacky

Breyerfest 2018, July 13-15

Breyerfest 2018 is being held at the Kentucky Horse Park in Lexington KY this weekend.

In 2013 the Marsh Tacky Breyer Horse model was released. Two Step was a limited run of 1,200 horses available only at Breyerfest 2013.


According to Identify Your Breyer website if you have this model it will be stamped on the belly with “Breyerfest 2013”. Model number 711162 is a solid dun with primitive markings.




photo credit Jackie McFadden

Ten years ago Breyer became interested in the rare breed horses of the East Coast. The Columbia Mall in Columbia, SC hosted an equine gathering in 2008 of horse breeds to bring attention to their search. Like nearly every Marsh Tacky event we attended, it was a blustery day, threatening wild weather. David Grant brought his stallion, D.P, to the event. David Grant runs Carolina Marsh Tacky Outdoors. He trains, breeds and sells Marsh Tacky Horses.041

Pal-O-Mine was there to greet everyone and have pictures taken.


photo credit Patricia Stafford

(c) Marsh Tacky Tales 2018






Horse Enthusiast? Horse History Buff? I encourage you to follow the Equine History Collective . Check out their  #ShelfieSundays for new reads. Upcoming Interviews with Equine Scholars Hylke Hettama, Miriam Bibby,  and the founder of the Equine History collective, Katrin Boniface.

via #SourceSaturday: The Secret History of the Mongols

How to find the EHC…






LinkedIn Groups



meme found on FB, because everything has a source!

(C) Marsh Tacky Tales 2018

#SourceSaturday: The Secret History of the Mongols

Posted in Artists, Activists and Historians

Featured Fine Artist, Keri Keene July 2018

Who: Keri Keene, fine arts pastelist

When & Where:

August 2018 Main Street Art Gallery  2036 14th Ave #103, Vero Beach, FL 32960

Palm trees with cattle scattered under them is the Florida Keri Keene knows and wants to share. She is a Florida Native and is taking an active stance in preserving Florida History.unnamed Her most recent body of work focuses on agricultural history, an often forgotten history of Florida. Non-traditional education in art and a therapeutic need to express emotion on canvas or paper led to her discovery of not only being an artist, but an artist who has a message.

Keene has seen that her work often introduces people to the rare Florida Cracker Horses and Cracker Cattle that helped build the Florida economy. She feels that most tourists come to Florida for the beaches and the entertainment. They do not get to indulge in the rich agricultural history Florida has to offer. Keene focuses on the unique landscape Florida has and the history behind it, featuring orange groves and ranch animals.unnamed (1).jpgcrackercow2

Growing up in North Florida, her father had a ranch populated with horses, cattle, dogs, pigs and cats.  She has always been drawn to the beauty of animals. Preserving a childhood she now realizes was much rarer than she realized, Keri has begun painting those Florida Cracker Horses and Cracker Cattle whose “Cracker” names came from the sound of the whips cracking, encouraging the cattle to leave the pines, palms and scrubby terrain.

After reading the book, A Land Remembered, which mentioned Marsh Tacky Horses, Keene wanted to have a Marsh Tacky Horse. Forever Florida, a ranch in St. Cloud, FL arranged for her to be able to photograph both the Florida Cracker Horses and Cracker Cattle in a semi-feral state. Forever Florida also provided an opportunity for her to ride Florida Cracker Horses.unnamed (1).jpgcracker cow

“I love to have followers on my social media and visitors to my website” -Keri Keene
 If anyone has questions about my art they can reach me at 

(C) Marsh Tacky Tales

Posted in Artists, Activists and Historians, Uncategorized

Artists, Activists and Historians- Beginning in July

Did you know that there is an entire group of people who study Equine History? Or that there are people who put their passion for preservation into Art? Or that grass roots conservation for rare equine breeds can be an activist position? Did you know that Equines are one of the most researched animals and most extensively DNA mapped?

These are a just a few of the the things I have been learning over my years of research into the real history of the Marsh Tacky Horse. A new and constant feature for Marsh Tacky Tales will be monthly interviews with Artists, Activists and Historians. Each one presented has brought significant insight to my research, even if they are not directly involved with the rare horse breed, the Marsh Tacky.

Multidisciplinary research takes us places we may never have thought to go. Investigating the South Carolina boll weevil, Revolutionary War sites, long hours searching for just the right index to discover a lost work and consults with archeologists, linguists and scientists are part of that work. And artists.  You may have noticed (if you have been following Marsh Tacky Tales on FB) that I have been posting some artwork as well as other links to preserving our wild mustangs. I had no idea that all these different things reached out and touched Marsh Tacky Horses when I began this blog.

Now that I know, I want to share these remarkable findings with you. If you love horses, history, and interconnectedness please stay tuned – I am interviewing many of the wonderful people I have met along this journey of the Natural History of the Marsh Tacky just for you.

(C) Marsh Tacky Tales 2018

Posted in Uncategorized

#MemberMonday: Alexandre Blaineau

More amazing academics in the field of Equine History!-

Equine History Collective

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Alexandre Blaineau

PhD European University of Brittany,
Greek History

What got you in to history ?
   I am interested on the civilizations of the Mediterranean sea, especially the Greek civilization, whose ways of thinking and culture are powerful elements of reflection.

In to equine history ?
   I started working on Xenophon before becoming interested in equine history. Then, the two equestrian treatises of the Athenian author were the object of my interest. My PhD was about horses and riders in Xenophon’s works. Equine history is a vast field of study because it deals with the history of technology, social history, economic history, social history, cultural history… I am convinced that we must work in interdisciplinarity to better understand horses as “actors” of history.

Who is your favorite historical horse ?
Bucephalus ! [A popular answer! Kat Boniface & Chelsea Shields-Más answered likewise]

What are you working on right now…

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Posted in Artists, Activists and Historians

Victoria Tollman Equus Survival Trust co-founder

Preserving Rare Breed Equines is different from

American Mammoth Jackstock & Victoria Tollman
Mammoth Jack photo courtesy Victoria Tollman,

breeding general livestock or non-rare equines. Equus Survival Trust (EST) was co-founded in 2004 by Victoria Tollman, a longtime breeder and activist, for Rare Breed Equine conservation. Rare Breed Equines enjoy a diverse lifestyle that is intertwined with humans in a unique manner. Generally they begin breeding from ages 4 or 5 through 23, training for traditional work that may require years to properly learn, being on exhibit, and spending many years as riding, working or driving companions. Conservation breeding focuses on increasing population numbers while maintaining healthy diversity of the genetic pool to continue the equines breed survival.

EST provides Rare Breed Equine networking and consultation services at no cost. Part of that work includes matching services to breeder needs, and directing sales inquiries to breeds that are suitable for the skills and interest. The EST also helps to maintain census numbers and facilitate teamwork within rare breed communities.

Tollman indicated that the largest challenge she sees is finding financial support for rare breed equines. The costs of exhibitions and events are formidable. EST encourages cost-sharing.  For example, the Equine Affair, with over 100,000 visitors, is an opportunity to cost-share. Instead of one owner or breeder trying to provide enough equines and funding for the entire display, EST provides the option to divide the costs between as many breeders/owners that are able to participate in a display in the same booth.

Newfoundland Pony,  photo courtesy Victoria Tollman

Equus Survival Trust has begun to secure grants that specialize in helping rare breeds. The first grant was awarded this year, 2018, to the Akhal-Teke breed. EST has provided 95% of the grant to the breeders to cover costs for parentage testing, ID horses for registration purposes, and to assist registering horses to the mother registry in Russia as well as create educational materials.  5% of the grant retained by EST helps offset the costs of other projects, including support to other rare breed events. EST believes that they are here to support the breed and breeder which is why they minimize overhead. This way the maximum percent of all donations and grants go to fund the rare breed events they support. The Equus Survival Trust is a true grass-roots volunteer group. Please check out their upcoming events.

EST believes that all kinds of owners are needed to keep the rare breeds surviving. Some owners prefer the retired horses, some are planning to actively breed, train or exhibit and it takes all of them to preserve these breeds. Providing sales, ownership or fostering that are appropriate for Rare Equine Breeds so they maintain the traits they were bred for, are more important than breeding for quantity sales. “Particularly in the smallest gene pools, every single individual becomes important to genetically contribute something back, even if they leave only 2 or three progeny. This is how you protect genetic diversity , says Tollman.

North America is the primary focus of EST, although they do international work as well.  EST will often help bridge breeders and enthusiasts with mother registries in Europe such as the Fell Pony Registry or to provide global counts of equines for research. EST’s FaceBook page reaches worldwide and rare breeders of equines communicate and learn from each other. Russian, European and Australian breeders for example connect online to learn from each other.

wikipedia  public domain

Tollman says that one of the most beautiful things she has witnessed was how Rare Breed Equine breeders come together to preserve their breeds. Currently Australian Suffolk Punch breeders suffer a lack of horses in order to continue their survival. American Suffolk Punch Breeders recently donated three horses – two colts and a filly and covered costs of shipping them to Australia to preserve the bloodlines so the Suffolk Punch would not become extinct. “This is conservation cooperation at its finest,” Tollman states.

(c)Marsh Tacky Tales 2018