Of course we always wanted model horses for Christmas. But a really good horse book was also acceptable!
Looking through some late 1950s-early 1960s issues of The Horse Lover's magazine, I found an interesting ad for horse books.
If I'd had $3.00 to spend back then, and a little foresight, I would have gotten the Crabbet Arabian Stud book by Lady Wentworth. It sells for about 15 times that amount now.
I first saw a copy at the British Library in London earlier this year; I think it came from the estate of Lady Wentworth herself. And closer to home here in the US, there's at least one copy of The Crabbet Arabian Stud available to researchers at the W. K. Kellogg Arabian Horse Library at Cal Poly Pomona!
Let's see what else was available in the way of Christmas horse books around 1960:
Justin Morgan Had a Horse, by Marguerite Henry. A classic in every sense of the word. And the foals looked so soft in the illustrations by Wesley Dennis.
The tiny black-and-white illustrations bring back some memories....
And one more, just for fun: Bluegrass Champion, by Dorothy Lyons, also illustrated by Wesley Dennis.
Here's hoping you get some good horse books to go with your model horses for the holidays! And if you don't, seek them out at used book stores, online, at thrift stores and estate sales. Read them, read them again, then share them with a kid who likes animals.
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