Academic journal article Material Culture

Final Take

Academic journal article Material Culture

Final Take

Article excerpt

It is hard to disassociate horses from Kentucky. Its Bluegrass region is famous for its stately horse farms; many of which were established well before the Civil War, and for the landscape draped with endless miles of painted board fences. But today, the Kentucky Bluegrass that was once dominated by all things equine, is being challenged by an unfavorable economy- for luxury goods such as racehorses, and by urban land uses encroaching on previously verdant pastures. The incremental loss of this connection between Kentuckians and their horse heritage is illustrated in this photograph of what I call "ghost horses." These ghost horses graze in their imaginary pasture in Louisville, Kentucky, in the front lawn of a bed and breakfast inn and are "kept in" by a remnant of an iconic white board fence. The bed and breakfast bears the name of a more famous neighboring property, Bashford Manor. Bashford Manor was a prominent horse farm that produced three Kentucky Derby winners between 1892 and 1906- Azra, Manual, and Sir Huon. …

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