Monday, February 23, 2009

The Belguim Shire Horse

Such a pair were Rodney and Colonel.
The farm ploughmen were the elite among workers during the Victorian, Edwardian period of English history and large estate owners like the Astor family was very keen to maintain the best with the highest skills. To this end they would take their ploughmen to seek out a pair of draft horses to their liking, knowing full well that they would be well looked after and trained to pull the plough.

The reason behind this was that a straight and polished furrow was required for the broadcast sowing of the grain crop, as the seed drill had not yet been invented. Hand broadcasting was carried out and the grain would fall and slide to the bottom of the furrow ridge. The field was then harrowed crossways to the ploughing and the seed covered up before the ground was rolled.

When the seed sprouted and the first green appeared; it would be a very proud ploughman who would point out how straight the rows of grain were. Of course the farmer and landowner were just as proud when they were showing their friends around the estate or farm.

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