Definition of the Quarter Horse
Bob Denhardt . . ."We were looking for horses like Little Joe and Joe Moore, Ballymooney and Red Dog, Guinea Pig and Possum, Zantanon and King, Jack McCue and Bullet. They weren’t Thoroughbreds . . .and they didn’t look like Thoroughbreds . . . not even fat Thoroughbreds! They were small and compact, averaging about 14-2 and weighing from 1050 to 1200. They had good heads . . . and big jaws, were rather short necked and had medium withers. All were exceptionally well muscled, and it was probably this feature that first caught your eye.". . . these features were clearly characteristic of a breed, and by them we could always pick out a Quarter Horse in a corral full of Morgans, Arabs, Thoroughbreds. . or any other light breed! They were as unique in their conformation as they were in their ability to work cattle!" Quoted from an interview with Bob Denhardt in the January 1964 Quarter Horse Journal
Ernest Browning. . . "A visit to the Browning’s Mule Shoe Ranch is mute testimony for this man’s unwavering stand for using horses. Animals lacking good feet and legs; stamina that comes only with proper breeding, and cow-sense would never make it back to the gathering pens in his herd. "I have never opposed a racing program within the organization," said Mr Browning. "I have opposed only those suggested breeding programs which would adversely affect the genuine conformation and positive characteristics of the Quarter Horse breed." Quote from, "He Likes the Using Kind" by Garford Wilkinson, The Quarter Horse Journal, September 1959.
R L Underwood . . ."The modern Quarter Horse is still the fastest in the world for short distances. He is stocky and powerful, with massively muscled legs which enable him to stop, start and turn faster than the shiftiest steer. Although he rarely stands more than 15 hands he often weighs more than 1200 pounds. But despite his bulk the Quarter Horse is handsome and graceful. He has an unusual head, with small alert ears and a great muscular jowl. His body is short and heavy, yet he is as light on his feet as a ballet dancer. . . ." Excerpt from article on the Quarter Horse, and R L Underwood (AQHA Founder) from Life magazine July 1943.
Helen Michaelis . . ."In performance and endurance the Quarter Horse has never been excelled, and in bloodlines he has held his own for well over two-hundred years. There is but one way to preserve the Quarter Horse, and that is to breed Quarter Horses to Quarter Horses." Quoted from the AQHA Stud Book, No. 1, Helen Michaelis, Editor.
Bob Denhardt, Ernest Browning, R L Underwood, and Helen Michaelis were founders of AQHA and are AQHA Hall of Fame inductees. All four knew what the AQHA was supposed to be about. Their belief in the value of the original Quarter Horse stands in their own words as the essence of what the Foundation Quarter Horse Association is dedicated to promoting.