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Monday, February 1, 2016

HORSE WAS PENSIONED: How Solomon S. Mead Cares for Stock on His Farm at Quaker Ridge

Source: Greenwich Graphic. February 14, 1903. Page 1.

For the past year or two the automobile has been very popular. As the "iron steed" came into more general use it became a question as to how long the horse would continue to be useful. The question has been settled. The great cost of a good automobile and the expense of running it have given the answer. Now t__n the novelty of the thing is no longer particularly interesting, the fad has had its day, and the horse is coming back into as much popularity as before.

At the farm of Mr. Solomon S. Mead at Quaker Ridge horses have been boarded for many years. Mr. Mead is a great lover of dumb beasts, and those placed in his charge as well as those creatures of his own receive kindly and experienced care. One has but to go to this farm to learn the secret of Mr. Mead's success. He never allows an employee to say an unkind word or strike an angry blow upon any of the dumb beasts on his farm.

The many pets about the farm and house attest to the kindly care and gentle, loving treatment with the place. It is a very interesting sight to see Mr. Mead's youngest daughter, Miss Agnes, frolicking with ___ many canine and feline pets. She loves the animals and they love her in return, and are always ready for a scramble or play whenever their mistress is composed.

In 1886 a fine pair horses was sent to Mr. Mead's to be boarded for this is Charles T. Cook, the wife of Mr. Cook of the firm of Tiffany & Company, jewelers, of Union Square, New York. The pair were called Prince and Fred. At the death of Mrs. Cook, Prince, who was a special favorite of his mistress, was sent to the farm pensioned for life. The horse was to have all the feed and care that could be bestowed upon him as long as he should live. At that time Prince was about ____ years old, and from that time until his death which occurred January 13th last, the horse was under Mr. Mead's care.

Prince never had a sick day in all that time, and the owner was always well satisfied. The bill for board was promptly paid when due. And the last check came as good all the others, without complaint or dissatisfaction. At one time when Mr. Mead felt that the expense to the owner was a constant drain, he suggested that the poor old beast be quietly put to rest. Mr. Cook seem shocked at the suggestion and after a while said, "Mr. Mead will not Prince die himself if we give him time?" At Mr. Mead's reply in the affirmative, he added, "All right, all you have to do is to feed him and I will pay the bills." 

The horse continue to live for some years and finally took to his rest as quietly and suddenly as death sometimes comes to an aged human being. No marks of a struggle were to be seen, and it was apparent that the poor old beast had peacefully laid himself down to meet the end. Prince must have been between 37 and 40 years old.

Mr. Mead thinks that the long life of the animal was due to the fact that he had for so many years  been pastured, and the many years spent in eating grass from the ground, he had worn off his front teeth, letting the grinders do the work. In most cases the front teeth get so long the horse cannot chew his food. Mr. Mead's cure for rundown horses is always been successful, yet is very simple. He says the horse should have milk from the cow, either for drink or mixed with the horses food. The animal may not take kindly to milk at first, but if judiciously treated, usually comes around to the treatment and like it. He applied his treatment once to a poor skeleton of a horse whose jaw had been broken by a curb bit. The horse came right up and was soon at one of the finest horses ever seen on the farm. It was ordered to kill the animal, but upon being led to the grave which had already been dug, the horse showed so much life by capering and prancing about that Mr. Mead had not the heart to say the word. The horse was led back to the stable and was kept for a month or two, when orders came again to put him out of the way.

Mr. Mead's fondness for the dumb creatures under his care has already led him to see them finally put to death on his place rather than be sold or given away where they might receive port or harsh treatment.

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