CM Archive
CM Archive Book Review line

MacEwan, Grant.

Saskatoon, Western Producer Prairie Books, c1986. 140pp, cloth, $24.95, ISBN 0-88833-209-2. CIP

Grades 6 and up
Reviewed by Gerald R. Brown

Volume 15 Number 2
1987 March

Belgians, Clydesdales, Percherons, Shires, Suffolks, and our own Canadians. These are names that conjure up images of strength and power and evoke memories of a bygone age. Grant MacEwan follows heavy horses in Canada from their ancient European roots to their early fortunes in the New World; from their crucial role in the frontier as a major source of farm power to their eventual decline with the advent of mechanization. Today, nurtured by a handful of devoted breeders, they have emerged from near obscurity to re-assert their places in the showrings of the world. An excellent case is made for re-introducing them to their former place of glory, the farmyard, where they can perform many routine tasks far more economically than a tractor.

In these pages you will meet the kingpins of every breed. Such horses as Baron's Pride, Bonnie Buchlyvie, and the incomparable Queen o' Carrick; Brilliant 1271, Drake Farms Chief, and Justamere Stylish Stella; Farceur and Paramount Flashwood; Snelston Topper, Crisp's Horse, and Albert de Cap Rouge; horses whose progeny have left their marks on generations of showring records. You will also meet the legendary horsemen who made them famous. The likes of George Lane, Scotty Bryce, and George Rupp, men without whose vision and pioneering spirit much of this chapter of Canadian history could never have been written.

Until now, the immeasurable contribution of heavy horses to the development of the Canadian agricultural industry has been largely forgotten. But MacEwan, who learned to respect their utility and loyalty as a young boy growing up on a farm, brings an entire era to life again. Through his telling of their story, enriched by an abundance of archival and contemporary photographs, our debt to these gentle giants is, at least in part, repaid. Useful for some cultural and economics units in secondary level courses, and of course for horse lovers of all ages.

Gerald R. Brown, Winnipeg School Division No. 1, Winnipeg, Man.
line indexes


1971-1979 | 1980-1985 | 1986-1990 | 1991-1995


The materials in this archive are copyright © The Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission Copyright information for reviewers

Young Canada Works