The Morgan has an interesting history. The breed originates from a
single stallion, a bay colt called Figure, who was foaled in Massachusetts
in 1789. As a colt he was taken back to Vermont by a singing teacher called
Justin Morgan, who claimed the horse as part of a repayment of a debt owed
The colt was a bit of a runt, and no one believed he would amount to
much. But over time he proved himself to be incredibly strong and willing,
a little horse who could work all day pulling logs out of the woods then in
the evening race against other horses while bets were placed on him. In time
Figure began to be known as “Justin Morgan’s Horse”, then simply “Justin Morgan”.
He became famous as a stud, and incredibly, no matter what mare he was crossed
with, the foal took on his looks and characteristics. Over time he was put on
loan with several farmers and made a name for himself as a strong little work horse.
Justin Morgan sired three famous sons (Sherman, Bulrush and Woodbury), and all
modern Morgans can still be traced back to the original Figure through these three