an occasional newsletter for Davenport enthusiasts
JULY 8, 2003:
When we moved to our present farm, after the Great Flood of '93, we thought
we had put such things behind us. Unfortunately, Mother Nature had a surprise
for us these ten years later. We have a small creek along our north border—Little
Sandy—which drains a small watershed, including a reservoir for two small
towns, Glasgow and Alsey. On May 10, we had several inches of rain here during
the night, but just up the watershed, they had over six inches, and hail, and
all sorts of good stuff. The ponds and reservoirs were not made to hold such
a surfeit of water, and they sent it on to Little Sandy without delay.
You've heard of flash floods? Well, this was sure one of those! To make a long story shorter, we got a lot of water and mud. Enough to fill the house up to the windows. Enough to fill two mare paddocks. Enough to fill the hay barn, with shop and several stallion stalls, about three feet deep. Enough to be chest deep in the driveway. Enough to threaten the stallion barn. Enough that it took three days of pumping to get the water out so that we could tackle the mud.
We were lucky—All of the people and horses were safe. We did lose a favorite cat. Amazingly, many of the koi and goldfish in the basement tanks were found healthy either in the basement sump pit or the driveway pools in amongst all the nasty flood debris. We saved the machinery, and got the hay barn cleaned down to the concrete before the wet hay combusted.
The house has been pretty badly damaged, and we will probably never get caught up on our paperwork now—I needed a new excuse! Charles is learning to work a newer computer, since his old one went swimming, and he finds that he likes having a laptop. We have discovered that we have more to do than we can, at our ages, get done. So...
old order changeth, yielding place to new,
At Craver Farms we finally have to recognize that we are part of the old order of Davenport breeding. We have been in it since 1955, which is longer than anyone else ever. We have bred [nearly 600] Davenport horses. We have had the thrill of showing over twenty prime Davenport stallions of our own breeding to visitors. We have had the greater thrill of showing five 'Khamsas' (groups of five) of prime mares of our breeding as examples of the major families of Davenport horses at Craver Farms. We do not know of any other farm which has been able to make such an exhibition of their own breeding.
Our horses have been among those that have led the way for Davenport breeding, along with fine individuals from other breeders. We think people have come here for Davenport horses because they like what we have, have confidence in the bloodlines of the horses here, appreciate that they have simple pedigrees, are bred as we understand Raswan according to Bedouin strains, fall within the parameters of classic horses, and still look like authentic Arabians, as they should.
We think the old order of Arabian breeding which we represent is changing. In our case, we can no longer continue a role as breeders. Age bothers. The day is around the corner when hands on horsemanship will be difficult for us. Times are changing, too, for the horse culture. Ours has been a big farm, though simple. Big farms are of the past. The next generation of Arabian breeders will not have so many horses per person. There can be more interaction between breeders who surely will do a better job of saving the Davenport horse than we have done. If troubled times come, the horses are safer in small groups. Maybe that is how God fulfills himself lest one good thing like Craver Farms corrupt the world of Davenport breeding.
So most of our horses [have been placed]. We [placed] them as best we [could] for the horses themselves and for the people who [bought] them.