Pat began riding when she was 6 years old and has never stopped. When she was 19 she bred her first mare, an American Quarter Horse, and produced a QH filly that went on to become a successful hunter on the ‘A’ circuit at a time when quarter horses were not typically seen at rated hunter shows. For a while Pat’s riding concentrated mainly on dressage and trail riding but then she had the good fortune to meet Ann and Nick Hartung who re-introduced her to fox hunting as Nick was the huntsman for Goshen Hounds. The Hartung’s also stood the TB stallion Keep Off. Pat’s admiration for Keep Off youngsters lead her to breed two mares to him. One of the resulting foals was the TB Annie’s Keepsake who went on to be a USCTA (now USEA) 2nd place Training Level HOY and continued her eventing career carrying a young rider thru Preliminary. The second resulting foal is Night Magic who is, at age 20, the alpha mare at DHS. After a career hunting, in the field and as a staff horse, Magic is now a fantastic broodmare.
Jim began riding when he met Pat and quickly developed a love of horses and hunting. Living in close proximity to Gettysburg also lead him to participate in several cavalry living history demonstrations with his hunter Morris. Jim and Morris even took part in the movie ‘Gettysburg’. Jim continues to hunt and assists with breeding, foaling and raising of foals.
Historically we have not bred for a single breed but rather for the resulting foal. We pride ourselves on selecting the best stallion for each of our exceptional mares to produce athletic youngsters that are sound in body and mind leading to successful careers be it in eventing, hunting, dressage or as a family pleasure mount.
Recently we have been using more Registered Irish Draught (RID) and Connemara stallions on our mares, which are primarily TB or TB crosses, and have been very pleased with the results. The resulting offspring have, without exception, great dispositions and athletic abilities.
Our foals are handled daily from birth but are also allowed to be ‘kids’. This balance of handling and freedom promotes the development of a youngster that is mannerly but also confident in them self.
Although most of our youngsters are for sale at weaning we typically wait to seriously market them after they are going well under saddle and perhaps competing. That provides time for us to see the results of our breeding program and gives the youngster a chance to ‘tell’ us what they want to be when they grow up. We may breed for a foal expecting it to become an event horse but if they are more inclined towards dressage, that’s fine too!