The News From Here

Our Quest #44 February 2005


The Davenport Conservancy continues as a quiet representative of Davenport owners. It provides a forum for discussion of Davenport issues. It has an active function in encouraging and financing publication on the Davenport subject.

In 2003, the Davenport Arabian Conservancy joined the Seauphah Publishing Association in a supplemental printing of The Annotated Quest. This should furnish this book for sales for years to come.

In 2004, the Davenport Arabian Horse Conservancy published a companion volume to The Annotated Quest titled Davenport Arabian Horses, a Collection of Articles. This was edited and the manuscript prepared for publication by Jeanne Craver. The book anthologizes from the periodical magazine literature on the Davenport Arabian horse. Forty-eight titles are given. Some concern technical aspects of Arabian horse history. Most have to do with individual horses and how they relate to people and the Davenport horse. Horses cited are included in an index of c.1200 entries. If you have a Davenport Arabian horse, chances are many of your horse's ancestors and their pictures can be looked up in this index.

We do not know of another book on any breed of horses anywhere that gives such an extensive and informal record of horses and their owners as does this book. One of its great values is that it gets a major group of informative articles out of dusty stacks of magazines and into a book where they can be read conveniently and used for reference purposes. Both The Annotated Quest and A Collection of Articles can be obtained from The Davenport Arabian Horse Conservancy: contact Alice Martin, DAHC Treasurer at Cost postpaid is $30.00 for The Annotated Quest and $35.00 for A Collection of Articles. Checks should be made out to the Davenport Conservancy.

If you do not have either book, you had just as well order them both. If you just want A Collection of Articles, you have a delightful read ahead as you enjoy the exciting world of Davenport Arabian horses.

In other 2004 activities, the Davenport Arabian Horse Conservancy joined Al Khamsa, Inc. in sponsoring book-selling booths at The Arabian Horse Celebration in Denver, August 4–6 and at the Arabian National Horse Show in Louisville, KY, October 7–16. Book sales were moderate, but there was ample opportunity to explain to show attendees about Davenport and Al Khamsa Arabian horses. Further, the booths provided a focus point for people who enjoyed our kinds of horses to visit with each other, exchange thoughts and contemplate the fact which had become obvious that we endorse a different kind of Arabian horse than the Arabian show horse which has given our breed a bad reputation among other breeds. It is time for us to stand up and be counted, and these booths provide a way of doing that.

At the Denver Celebration, there was a meeting for Conservancy folk at Elizabeth Pade's suite in the host hotel, and a longer meeting for the larger group of Al Khamsa supporters. It had been a good weekend for both organizations. The new president for Al Khamsa is Rosemary Doyle. She is an old-timer in the organization and a very active person. She is off to a great start. Should be an interesting year for Al Khamsa.

Day of Sunshine, day of Horseplay

While the Arabian Horse Celebration was being held in Denver, Homer Davenport's hometown of Silverton, Oregon, was holding its annual celebration of "Homer Davenport Days." This is a big deal with thousands in attendance. It is an honor that Davenport is remembered in Silverton almost a hundred years after his death. It is appropriate, too, because he wrote and talked about Silverton frequently, came back to it now and then while he was alive and finally at the end when he was buried there.

This year Davenport horses were appropriately present for the festivities. Carrie Brendle writes:

A small but robust contingent of Davenport Arabians participated in Davenport Days 2004, the 150th birthday celebration of the town of Silverton, Oregon, held to honor the cartoonist, journalist and horseman, Homer Davenport. Marching in the parade, Saurday, August 7, 2004, behind an enthusiastic "bed pan" brigade and in front of aoooga horns and old fashioned cars dating from the early 1900s, five Oregon Davenport horses strutted their stuff, demonstrating cool-under-pressure reactions while simultaneously delighting a crowd gathered for the annual tradition.

Following a "DAVENPORT ARABIANS" banner carried by Jessica and Kristina Spackman, Lisa Gould Spackman on SA Apogee led the group, dressed in show-quality native costume. Apogee stole the hearts of little children who, longing for candy, tossed by other entries, courageously ran up to Lisa and Apogee for a quick pet. Faith LD, ridden by Sylvia Dion, impressed the crowd with her long legs and radiant bay coat. Joanna Spackman rode in the middle on Nuance CF, a very eager gray mare who Joanna had never ridden previously. Rosa Spackman and her gelding, Jauhara Krush LD, aka "Joe", played "tag" with Carrie Brendle and her 3 year old filly, Du Soleil BPA, who worked the crowd by zig-zagging from side to side, encouraging the crowd to practice the "light bulb" and "windshield washer" waves and clap for the descendants of Homer's quest to the Middle East. Without exception, the horses, experienced and novice, performed magnificently!

The day progressed with two significant presentations of Davenport Arabians. Held annually at McGee Park in downtown Silverton, visitors were given complete access to Locket CF, a leggy chestnut mare who patiently rested as kids young and old crawled around, between, under, over, in front of and behind (yes behind) her to get a closer look at a "real horse." Common comments included "Is that really an Arabian?", "What is a Davenport Arabian?" to "Can I touch her teeth?" Locket was a hit in the park and next year's event might find her in an authentic Bedouin tent in the same location!

The second major component of the horses' participation on Saturday was the presentation of "Homer's Journey" at Geercrest, Homer's childhood home. Hosted by the Toler family who owns and cares for Geercrest, the presentation of horses included representatives of a couple of different strains common to Davenports in an informal demonstration of Parelli methods, led by Zane and Sue Smith, active west coast Al Khamsa supporters. R.J.Cadranell, sans his Davenport Arabians, was also on hand to share stories of Davenport Arabians and Homer Davenport. A full day of riding, working with and talking about the many wonderful characteristics of the Davenport horse culminated in a gorgeous sunset as horses and trailers set out for home.

Sunday involved encores at Geercrest with story tellers and live musicians. Nuance CF and Jauhara Krush LD returned to accompany the historical review of the town of Silverton and its surroundings. Nuance and Jauhara Krush's incredible calm dispositions led to an invitation for the two horses to join the crowd.... literally within the circle of music and stories being shared. Needless to say, Homer's planned or instinctive selection of ancestors of these horses was greatly admired by the crowd.

Coordination of the event was led by Erika Toler of Geercrest, who herself owns a beautiful Davenport filly, Special Me LD. Both Erika and "Special" were on the front page of the local Silverton newspaper as part of the media "blitz" preceeding the event. Erika worked with the Silverton Historical Society as well as local historians to include the Davenport Arabians as a premiere presentation in the parade and the park, as well as at Geercrest both Saturday and Sunday. Her efforts this year as well in years past to lead the involvement of the Davenport Arabians in this affair paid off in huge grins, big chuckles and happy horses.

... What is crystal clear at Davenport days 2004 was the enthusiasm of the crowd, many of whom were unfamiliar with horses in general, let alone Arabians or Davenport Arabians, for the gentle behavior, awesome beauty, and incredible strength of these horses. We are sure to be invited for 2005!
—Carrie Cabak Brendle


Jim and Erika Toler's long-term dream for Geercrest is for it to become a recognized historical shrine. It was probably Homer Davenport's favorite place in the world, and touring it one can see why. The house is a sizeable old farm house in perfect condition. There are lovely porches opening the way to glorious views. This would be be the best of what the pioneer ethic of Davenport's time could produce. Our father's house has many mansions. Maybe this is one of them that somehow dropped from Heaven. A bit of the American dream come real.

What a place for Davenport memorabilia! Carol Lyons was very responsive to its charm. No custodian—not even an angel—could care for it better than do the Tolers.

page 1—Carol Lyons and Laura Cavedo
page 3—Doing Things With Davenports
page 4—Green Pastures, Commercial Considerations
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