Ninety-one year old Susan Hanley and her Golden Retriever, Colt, visit with Cezanne, one of her Lambert Morgan stallions. Cezanne will soon be making the trip to his new home in Adelaide, Australia. Below, Cezanne and Matisse pose for a portrait. L.D. Bennett photos

Laura Dean Bennett
Staff Writer

Morgans are one of America’s pre- eminent horse breeds, tracing their lineage back to the late 1700s.

The breed began with the birth in 1789 of its foundation sire, a sturdy and stylish Vermont colt named Figure, who was owned by a man named Justin Morgan.

The stallion gained a reputation for versatility and the ability to outperform other horses, no matter their breeding or their size.

He became known as an excellent sire – passing along his good temperament and good looks.

Morgans became one of America’s favorite horse breeds during the 19th Century – after all, they made excellent coach horses, harness racers, work horses and cavalry mounts.

Two hundred years later, in the mountains of Pocahontas County, the tradition of breeding fine Morgan horses continues.

Shannon and Susan Hanley, of Hillsboro, have devoted the past 46 years of their lives to the preservation of one particular…

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