The American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) recognized the Pennsylvania State University (Penn State) with its Legacy award in October at its Breeder Recognition dinner in Amarillo, Texas, at the Quarter Horse Hall of Fame and Museum. The award honors those who have registered at least one foal for fifty consecutive years.

Skip Sioux

Penn State’s reputation as a leading breeder was solidified when they purchased the palomino Quarter Horse stallion Skip Sioux (pictured here).

Terry Etherton, MS, PhD, head of the Department of Dairy and Animal Science, said, "Penn State’s equine program has a strong historical legacy of success, and it is gratifying to receive this distinguished recognition of the continuity of this outstanding program."

He noted that the program began in 1955 when the American Quarter Horse became the breed of choice for departmental emphasis.

The American Quarter Horse was selected, in part, because of its popularity in Pennsylvania and because livestock judging contests replaced draft horses with Quarter Horses.

The era of the Quarter Horse began with the purchase of the stallion Sorrel Chief purchased as a yearling from Michigan State University. Two mares, Akins Shirley and WMD Orphan Annie, became the foundation broodmares in the breeding program.

Penn State’s herd usually contains 3 to 5 stallions and 12 to 20 mares, and all horses are used in teaching,