What is a Foundation Morgan Horse?
Foundation Morgan meets the criteria as stated below.
The Foundation Morgan ideally exhibits the old type, classic
style of Morgan horse which was prized during the mid
1800's to early 1900's and still highly valued by dedicated
breeders and admirers today.
majority Foundation Morgans exhibit strong characteristics
from most modern day Morgans by their compact, close
ribbed bodies, substance of bone, deep well-rounded
quarters, oblique shoulders, broad forehead with
soft kind eye and short ears, medium length neck
nicely crested...all described as baroque in type.
These old bloodlines are those that make very versatile
animals and their intelligence and sensible dispositions
make for an all around excellent family horse as
well as a serious contender in any discipline.
What is the criteria for the Foundation Morgan Horse?
The Horse must meet all of the following criteria:
The sire line must trace to Justin Morgan (very top line of pedigree)
Horse must not have any saddlebred outcrosses after 1930*
Offspring are categorized as 'foundation' as long as both parents qualify
saddlebred after 1930 means no horse foaled after
1930 with a saddlebred
parent. The one exception is the registered offspring of the saddlebred
mare Ladelle. She had foals, including full siblings, both before and
after the 1930 date that were registered as Morgans. So, the decision was
made to allow those from Ladelle as "Foundation".
Where can I find out if my horse qualifies?
to the FoundationMorganHorseSociety.com website
and click "Foundation List of Approved Morgans."
If I'm still not sure if my horse qualifies, who can I ask?
You can contact us and ask. Please
check the list first though.
Why was the term Foundation Morgan Horse originally
in the 1930's, crossing Morgans with Saddlebreds was
quite fashionable due to the popularity of the Saddlebred
and the prestige they brought in the show ring. This
practice resulted in Morgans which were less and less
of classic Morgan type. More than 80% of living Morgans
today have modern Saddlebred crosses. The
term "Foundation Morgan" was defined in an
effort to bring attention to the fact that old lines
make well-educated breeding decisions.
A commitment to the baroque style has
been made by the supporters and
breeders of Foundation Morgan bloodlines in the hopes
of saving these
characteristics that differentiate the Morgan from
other breeds of
Who came up with the term?
group of long time preservationist breeders who
saw that if something wasn't done to classify the
Morgans with old bloodlines, they would soon be lost
to the breed.
Like the Quarter horses, Arabs, Shetland ponies,
Friesians, etc. there are old lines and modern lines.
reasons that people choose the modern lines which
is of course perfectly acceptable, but we choose
preserve the old lines with the goal to preserve
the old style Morgan type.
How was the criteria for Foundation Morgan determined?
Foundation Morgan database of approved horses and
established after several years of studying the pedigrees and history of the
The questions that we asked when doing this research were:
• What caused the breed to lose its original characteristics?
• Which bloodlines brought into the breed in modern times did the most
and caused the breed to change?
• Which bloodlines needed to be included in the Foundation database to
the old families?
The 1930 date came about after several years of study on conformation and bloodlines
within the Morgan breed. Based on careful study of Morgan history, living horses,
bloodlines, the Morgan standard, etc. it was determined that horses introduced
into the registry after 1930 were the ones most responsible for the largest shift
using the 1930 cut off date, no Saddlebred after
1930, we cut out the later Saddlebred of the "modern" type
that essentially had little or no Morgan blood at
all. What little Morgan blood they may have had was
long separated from the Morgan breed and the ancestors
that may have been common to both breeds. That modern
Saddlebred had evolved into an entirely different
type and did great damage to the classic conformation
of the Morgan breed when introduced into the Morgan
registry in the 1930s and later.
using the 1930 date, it also eliminated all the bloodlines
that had been investigated and proven by DNA testing
to have parents that were not Morgan but were left
in the registry, and/or left offspring and descendants
in the registry, or were in breeding programs that
were proven of doing illegal outcrosses.
most prevalent of these horses was Upwey King Peavine,
a pure, modern Saddlebred. He is extrememly
prevalent in pedigrees and therefore he had a very
large influence on Morgan type. It is difficult to
find Morgans that do not include him in their pedigrees.
He also does not trace to Justin Morgan on the sireline…one
of the requirements for Foundation status.
are the different Morgan family lines?
Lippitt, Brunk and Western Working.
can I get more information?
On this www.FoundationMorganHorse.com website
• Historical photos
• Articles - both recent and historical
• Breeder's Directory
• Stallions at Stud
• Horses for Sale
can join the Foundation Morgan Horse
Yahoo Groups List at http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/foundationmorganhorse/ for
discussion on bloodlines, history and everything
else Foundation Morgan.
can go to the www.FoundationMorganHorseSociety.com website
to determine if your horse is Foundation. On the
home page click,"Foundation List
of Approved Morgans."
How can I help to preserve and promote Foundation
1) If your mares are 100% Foundation
or have minimal saddlebred lines, breed
to Foundation stallions.
2) Tell people about this website at foundationmorganhorse.com
3) Put a link to this website from your website.
4) If you have horses that are Foundation, designate
them as Foundation and be sure to include a definition
people understand what Foundation means.
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