Thistle Belle ~ was born in 1960, a daughter of Thoroughbred Silver Thistle. Her dam was a Brujo by Plaudit. I had been a fan of Silver Thistle for years even though there were a lot of rumors about his valid progeny while standing in Louisiana. The Silver Thistles were tight twisted, a little nervous, lots of speed and medium size with a lot of hip, depth and athletic style.
I was taking photos of Royal Bar for Shamell Ranch of Marietta, CA in 1963 and the horse manager rode by me on a slick chestnut mare with a hackamore. At first glance she was beautiful. At second glance she was beautiful. He told me what she was. I ask what his plan was for her and he said, sell. When I ask how much he said 35. I know this sounds silly, but she was so good I ask, "Hundred or thousand?" I could see her at $35,000 under the right conditions. He said $3500. I took some photos and ask him to hold her a few days. I called my Dad (Frank) and told him about Thistle Belle. While I was taking photos on further north in California Dad drove from Colorado to Marietta and picked up Thistle Belle. When I got back to Colorado she was there.
Dad and I showed Thistle Belle to win a lot of Grand Championships. We had to show against the Wiescamp show string every weekend. We couldn't always beat Leroy Webb and Hank's great mares, but we did more than half the time. This photo was Dad showing Thistle Belle winning Grand Champion at the Colorado State Fair. She was fun to show and always alert standing at attention.
We bred Thistle Belle to Two Eyed Jack, Silver Skip and Three Bars. When I took her and Blue Reed to Quanah, TX to breed to Three Bars, Walter Merrick wanted her. He had stood Silver Thistle and liked that family. Before I left Walter's he wrote a nice check and owned Thistle Belle. It was not the $35,000, but close.
Author: Darol Dickinson