The Hermitage is a plantation that was owned by Andrew Jackson, the seventh President of the United States. It is located in Davidson County, Tennessee, 10 miles east of downtown Nashville and it is designated as a National Historic Landmark.
While on my visit I was very taken by the horses I found along the property. I was able to contact the owners who informed me that the name of this breed of horse is Percheron. They informed me that this breed was chosen because they are well muscled, and known for their intelligence and willingness to work. These particular horses came primarily from the Amish.
Percherons range in height from 15 to 19 hands high and can weigh up to 2600 pounds. The lower thighs are heavily muscled to give the horse enormous pulling power. They are wide and deep through the chest with a large heart girth and well sprung ribs. The croup is level, tying into a large round hip. Most Percherons are black or grey, but sorrels, bays, roans, and other colors are also seen. Many Percherons have white markings on the head and feet, but excessive white is undesirable.
The breed standard states “The Percheron head and neck are typical of the most attractive draft horse character. Good Percherons have a large and full prominent eye, a broad and full forehead, and straight face. His strong jaw and refined ears attractively set and carried with animation, suggests his Arabian ancestry. Stallions should have a ruggedness about the head and mares should have a feminine look.”
I have to say they are absolutely magnificent!