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Summer 2011

Over 500 people attended the Discover The Horse that Discovered America event!  See links below for press coverage:

Please enjoy the photos from the Amerind Event by Dikki Van Helsland the artists that created the art work for the Arizona Heritage Horse T-shirts. 


Spanish Barb Horse Association Presents "Discover The Horse That Discovered America" - August 27, 2011

Come to the Amerind Foundation in the beautiful Dragoon Mountains of Southeastern Arizona to learn about the Spanish Barb and Arizona's Heritage Horse!  In March 2011, Jan Brewer Arizona's Governor declared the Colonial Spanish Horse as Arizona's Heritage Horse.  This Expo will be a celebration of that designation and an opportunity to partner with the Amerind Foundation.

We will have demonstrations with Marjorie Dixon's Hildago, a Champion Mounted Shooting Horse and Rosemary Gordon-Panuco's Leo, a Champion Hunter Jumper.  For the $5.00 admission fee you get.

  • Horse events with Champion Colonial Spanish Horses
  • Admission to the Amerind's World Famous Museum and Art Galley
  • Southwestern Art & Jewerly vendors
  • Native American Food vendors
  • Fun Events for Children
  • Free parking
  • Author Silke Schneider will give a talk on Arizona's Spanish Barbs
  • The Father Kino Society will talk about Father Kino's life and his dedication to the Spanish Horses.
  • 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

To download the flyer go here and to download a the event schedule go here.

Spring 2011

2011 Babies

Check out the photo of a 2011 chestnut colt from La Terrerica Rocilla and Flying Eagle from the SBHA Registrar, Heidi Collins of Mule Creek, NM!


The Dixon's Ranch

Heidi Collins of Dripping Springs Ranch in NM, and SBHA Registrar brought her beautiful mare Mariposa to the Dixon's Ranch to breed with their Stallion Alejandro. Here are a couple of photos I took on Sunday June 19, 2011, when Mariposa was introduced to the other mares and Alejandro.  If you click on the small photos below a larger version will load on another page.

Alejandro - Colonial Spanish Stallion      Spanish Colonial Mares

What is Happening at the Ladder Ranch

The SBHA president Steve Dobott send in some photos of what is happening at the Ladder Ranch.

Steve Dobrott & Compadre his Spanish Barb

The Dobrott's horses with Elk

EHV-1 Updates

The horse owners in the Southwest and west have been worried about the outbreak of EHV-1.  EHV-1 is a herpes virus that has a neurologic variant.  It can be fatal, there is no cure and no inoculations at this time.

Many horses contacted this disease from a Cutting Horse Show held in Ogden, Utah.  To keep up on the latest status of this disease go to this website

Jose Juan

Here are a couple of photos that Silke Schneider of Silver City, New Mexico, took of Jose Juan.  Jose Juan is a blue roan Wilbur-Cruce gelding that Silke bred. 

Jose Juan and his woner Ria Ramsey

First photo is of Jose Juan and his owner Ria Ramsey of New Mexico

Jose Juan with Silke Schneider

Second photo is of Jose Juan and Silke Schneider.

First Rides

Becky Chandos took her Spanish Barb, Zapata to a local trainer in April to start him under saddle.  Zap as Becky calls him is back home and ready to take Becky on some great trail rides.  Here is a photo of one of his first rides under saddle.  Look at Zap go!


    Arizona State Heritage Horse Document

    Arizona State Heritage Horse

    The Arizona Colonial Spanish Horse Project group is proud to announce that on March 3, 2011 Governor Janis Brewer signed a proclamation naming the Colonial Spanish Horse as the Arizona State Heritage Horse!  This summer the group is building a new website for the Arizona State Heritage Horse Project.  They are working on a Arizona State Heritage Horse Bill for 2012.
    The Arizona Colonial Spanish Horse Project is planning their first celebration event at the Amerind Foundation for late summer.  This event will feature the Arizona Colonial Spanish Horses.

    Meet SBHA Member Diana Gallant and her Spanish Barb Rhumi, of Belfast MERhumi

    Rhumi is a 16 year-old black Spanish Barb gelding. No matter where we travel together, onlookers are curious about him. A typical question is "What breed is he? --a Morgan? True to reality, most folks are not familiar with Spanish Barbs or Spanish Colonial horses in general. The words alone often render a silent pause or in some cases, the end of the conversation. It provokes a bit of wonder as people try to find a way to categorize this little known horse breed. It's not unlike my frame of reference as of a few years ago when I was first introduced to Spanish Barbs.

    For me, it was intrigue at first sight. I met Rhumi when he was 8 years old. At that time, he was living a very care-free, natural life amongst his extended family--a herd of about 35 horses on a lovely 100 acre property in New York State. Based on my understanding, he had very little training of any kind up until that time. He was pretty much untouched but obviously very gregarious with an investigative mind! He is the type of horse that will saunter up to you and gently tease the pen out of your pocket before he licks your hand like a dog would. For example. he lifts his head from grazing to neigh to the UPS delivery person or whoever happens to be passing by his fence line just to say hello before returning to graze.

    I bought him as he turned nine but it wasn't until he reached 10 years old that I "started" him, based on my assumption that we needed to start at the beginning of everything (if that makes sense!). And so we began our relationship. Lucky for him and lucky for me that I approached our relationship from a natural horsemanship perspective. That turned out to be the right path for both of us.

    Diana & Rhumi in FlordiaInitial saddling experiences revealed severe girth issues and a fair share of bucking! I recall being a bit baffled at the time because when Rhumi was "at ease" he was such a calm, kind, relaxed sort of fellow and to experience his objections to my requests revealed quite an unexpected response from him. Through my experiences with him, I discovered that getting to really know him was going to be an ongoing process. Six years later, that has proven to be quite true as he shows different dimensions of himself based on what I ask of him. Just in the past year, I have surprisingly found out that he loves water and he loves to swim. He splashes with a passion and doesn't stop until everyone in the area is soaked. He also seeks out the current in the middle of a river and attempts to follow it. When he finds an interest, he is really passionate about it and I've learned that going with his flow is the most enjoyable way to be with a Spanish Barb!


Welcome to New Members.

Welcome to Return to Freedom as one of our newest members!  Return to Freedom has both Cerbat and Wilbur Cruce horses on their property.  In fact they have Isadora-Cruce the model for the Breyer Isadora horse  

Return to Freedom is based in Southern California and is also home to Spirit the horse that was used in the movie Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron.  We are excited to have Return to Freedom as members of SBHA.  For more information on Return to Freedom see our Spring Newsletter and their website at

 Return to Freedom Photo

Ridge Silouette byTony Stromberg


    Rosemary and LeoWelcome Leo and Rosemarry Gordon-Panuco to SBHA!  Leo was registered into SBHA in January 2011! Below is Leo's story.

    Article VII, whose barn name is Leo is an amazing little horse. He stands only 14.3, but is a mighty and wonderful horse. He is 15 years old, sound, and has no vices. He has clean legs. He jumps quietly and in excellent form that is good enough to win in good company at an “A” rated USEF show.

    And he can still show in the walk trot classes and lead line, being careful to make sure his little riders stay on. He is a good dressage horse and has introduced many riders to competing in lower level dressage. Thanks to his steady temperament and good training, Leo helped a physically impaired adult achieve a dream – to ride in a clinic with Olympic Rider Gwen Stockebrand. As if this is not enough to recommend him for a hardship registration, he is also an outstanding trail horse. He is Rosemary's first choice as a horse for anyone to ride on the trail. He can be slow or he can really move to keep up.

    Leo with Rosemary (standing next to Leo) at the Southern Arizona Horse Expo in January 2011

    Since Leo has been with Rosemary, he has accomplished many awards including the following:

    • 2007: TDC (Tucson Dressage Club) Champion Schooling Shows Introductory Level Junior Rider (Sarah Dunlap) and Champion Training Level Young Rider (Brett Cadden).

    • 2008: THJA (Tucson Hunter Jumper Association) Reserve Champion Beginner Rider Hunter (Sarah Dunlap); 3rd Walk-Trot Hunter (Elyse Atler); 3rd Medium/Long Stirrup Equitation (Lee Riley).

    • 2009: THJA 4th Schooling Hunter (Lee Riley); Reserve Champion at Tucson Fall Preview in the Mini Hunter Division (Abby Price)

    • 2010: THJA year end Champion Modified Childrens/Adult Amateur Hunter (Paige Donaghue, Sarah Dunlap, Alana Carden); Champion at Tucson Fall Preview in the Pre-Childrens/Adult Amateur Hunter Division (Lara Elliott); Reserve Champion Tucson Fall Festival (Lara Elliott).

    Article VII (Leo) is very much in the public eye at hunter jumper and dressage shows. He is always presented in top notch form. He is well thought of by many nationally known trainers and judges. His show name is Article VII because it is the shortest article in the Constitution and he is Rosemary's shortest horse. Since he is shown as an entry of Constitution Show Stable he needed a suitable constitutional name.

    Queen Creek Horse Expo

    We had a blast at the Queen Creek Horse Expo in Queen Creek, AZ.  It is always fun talking to people about the horses and the Arizona State Heritage Horse.  This event was held at the amazing Queen Creek Horse Park in Queen Creek, AZ on April 30. 

    They had trainers in three different arena's speaking and demonstrating their training techniques from 9:30 am to 5:00 pm!  The weather was sunny not too hot but very windy.  Becky Chandos, Beth Mann, Deni Mitchell, Heidi Collings, Maureen Kirk-Detberner and Rosemary Gordon-Panuho helped with the booth. 

    We raffled off a photo of Miranda and it was won by Jeannie Glover of Black Canyon, AZ.  We also got a lot of signatures of support for the Arizona Heritage Horse.  It was a fun day and with our new tent we are ready for the Our booth at the Queen Creek Horse Exponext event! 







    Tucson Father Kino Event

    On March 13, 2011, Tucson celebrated the 300th anniversary of the death of Father Eusebio Franciso Kino, S.J.  Marjorie and Jerry Dixon were ask to bring their Wilbur-Cruce gelding Hidalgo .  Father Kino was one of the first to introduce the Spanish Horse to Mexico and Arizona.  The Wilbur-Cruce strain of Spanish Barbs are from his original breeding program in Mexico. 

    The event was wll attended with the Mayor of Tucson and several of Father Kino's relatives from Italy.  Marjorie Dixon and Maureen Kirk-Detberner were able to get more signatures on the Arizona State Heritage Horse Petition.  It was a great day and a great opportunity to promote the horses.

     Photos taken by Maureen Kirk-Detberner

    Marjorie getting signatures

    Marjorie Dixon getting signatures on the Arizona State Heritage Horse Peitition.

    Rick with Hidalgo at the Kino Event he is best boy to take out to public events

    Tucson Mayor

    Marjorie sharing the stage with Tucson Mayor Bob Walkup and one of Father Kino's relatives from Italy.

    Marjorie telling the crowd about the AZ State Heritage horse

    Marjorie telling the crowd about the Arizona State Heritage Horse Proclamation.

    Jerry and Marjorie with Hedigo

    Hidalgo, Marjorie and Jerry at the Kino event.

    2011 Tucson Rodeo

    At the Tucson Rodeo this February, Marjorie Dixon loaned her horse Azul to be ridden by a gentleman dressed as Father Kino and they won the Judges Trophy.  Here are some photos of that event.

    Father Kino riding Azul

    2011 Manda

    Several of our members and their horses participated in a Manda event in Tucson Arizona, in February.  A Manda is an event on horse-back where the riders commemorate a loved one or friend that needs help or that has been helped by their prayers.  Jerry Dixon, Alfredo and Beth Mendvile rode their Spanish Barbs in this event.  Here are some photos taken of that event.

    San Javier Mission

    The Manda started at San Javier Mission, located south of Tucson, AZ.  This mission was established by Father Kino.

    Father Kino and Azul

    The rider that was dressed as Father Kino with Azul, Marjorie Dixon's Spanish Barb.

    Beth and Alfredo

    Beth Mendivil on Lorenzo and Alfredo Mendivil on Miranda.

    Jerry Dixon all dressed up on Hidalgo.

     Riders leaving San Javier

    The riders leaving San Javier Mission.


    The riders along the Manda trail from San Javier to Tucson, AZ.

    Near the end of the ride

    Riders near the end of the Manda in Tucson, AZ

Winter 2010-2011

Some great photos from SBHA member Kimberlee Jones of her beautiful mare Victoria and at a dressage clinic with clinician and former Olympic judge Jill Beltran in Murrieta, CA.  Victoria is the first  Sulphur Horse registered by SBHA. 




Photo by Hanah Fields-Austin.  Click on the smaller photo to see the larger version.




 Second photo is of Kimberlle Jones and Victoria at the beach in Palos Verdes, CA.  Photo by Michael Remmer.

SBHA goes to the County Line Riders (CLRC) of Catalina's 12th Annual Competitive Ride

On February 5th, Marjorie Dixon and Maureen Kirk-Detberner took information on SBHA, the Spanish Barb Horses and the Arizona State Heritage Horse to the CLRC Competive Trail Ride.  They spoke to many of the riders about the horses and the importance of preservation and promotion.

Beth Mendivil brought her Wilbur-Cruce gelding Lorenzo as an example of the Spanish Barbs.  Beth has Lorenzo in training for jumping.
                                                                       Beth and Lorenzo



Here is Lorenzo and Beth arriving at the event

Lorenzo & SBHA banner         

Lorenzo and Miranda adding some life to the SBHA banner.     

Alfredo & Miranda

 Alfredo Mendivil rode Miranda as he patrolled the trails.

There were many positive comments on Lorenzo and Miranda and support for the efforts to protect and promote the Spanish Barb Horses.  We collected signatures on the petition for the Arizona State Heritage Horse.  All in all it was a great opportunity to promote the Spanish Barb! 

Check out the Christmas picture sent in by Kathleen Bellemare, New Mexico.  The photo is of her family with their Spanish Barb, Feliz (aka "Whipper").

Kathleen Belemare's family Christmas photo

How much snow did Jerry and Heidi Collings get at their Dripping Springs Ranch in Mule Creek, New Mexico?

Dripping Springs Ranch 12/2010Dripping Springs Ranch in the snow 12/2010


Don and Maureen Detberner of Tucson, AZ used the photo below as their Christmas card.  The photo is of Enrique, "aka Rickie" their Wilbur-Cruce yearling that they purchased from Marjorie Dixon of St. David, AZ, last summer.


Becky Chandos of Dragoon AZ, is preparing her Wilbur-Cruce three year old Zapata for his new job.

Zapata with a saddle

SBHA at the Tuson, Arizona 2nd Annual Southern Arizona Horse Expo, January 15 & 16, 2011

Boy oh boy did we have a great time.  At this year's Expo the headliner was John Lyons.  It was a treat to watch John work with a troubled horse and her young rider. 

We were fortunate to share a booth with Trainer and Expo Event Organizer Clay Harper of Oracle, AZ.  Deni Mitchell, Becky Chandos, Marjorie Dixon, Heidi Collins and Maureen Kirk-Detberner worked in the booth.  In our booth we provided:

  • Silke Schneider's book, Arizona's Spanish Barbs,

  • Eva Wilbur-Cruce's book, A Beautiful Cruel Country,

  • Posters of the SBHA horses, 

  • Printed flyers and brochures about the Spanish Barbs,

  • Our petition nominating Colonial Spanish Horse named as the State Heritage Horse of AZ was available for signature

  • Equine Photographer Maureen provided two framed photos of Spanish Barb Mares as a thank you raffle for the people that signed the state petition.

When we weren't watching the arena presentations or shopping at the great vendor booths, we got to talk about the Spanish Barb to fellow horse lovers.  It was a blast to introduce these amazing horses to the public.  Many of the visitors to our booth realized that their horses might be Spanish Barbs.  Several visitors will be sending us photos to compare their horse to the breed standards.

Notice the banner for the Arizona State Heritage Horse at the back of the booth.

Visitor's brought photos of their horse for us to see.

We were so fortunate to see local Hunter-Jumper and Dressage trainer Rosemary Gorder Panuco as a featured presenter.  Rosemary brought Leo, who she recently registered with SBHA as her demonstration horse. 

Rosemary and Leo 


In this photo Rosemary (right) is telling the crowd about the Spanish Barb Horses and Leo campionships.

At the Expo, Rosemary's presentation was, "Teaching Your Horse How To Jump."  The audience was amazed to hear Rosemary talk about the Spanish Barbs and how Leo, her 14.2 hand jumper, is her most prized horse! Leo is a champion jumping horse that also teaches children to ride and jump.  Leo has shown in Hunter Jumper and Dressage Shows, and has carried a disabled gentleman so he could attend the horse clinic of his dreams.

Leo Jumping

See Leo.  See Leo jump!

Leo by the new Spanish Barb Horse Association Banner 

Leo is admiring our new SBHA banner.

Becky and Marjorie bring some of the posters for the SBHA booth.

We all had a great time look forward to next years Expo.  Maybe some of you would like to help next year..let us know at

Summer 2010

SBHA Annual Burro Mountain Meeting and Ride 

This year's meeting was a informative, inspirational, fun and full of great, no, the best meals ever!

"While some of us stayed in the Burro Mountain Lodge or cabins, many camped in tents, or slept in their horse trailers." SBHA members, Dave Robinsen and his son, Matt Robinsen, brought along, and even set up a very comfortable and exotic looking yurt - a framed, circular Mongolian-style tent!  

Board member, Mike Bruce prepared some outstanding breakfast and dinner meals, and showed us what wonderful food can be prepared using only coals and a dutch-oven.  He made a hot peach cobbler that was to die for!  I think we all put on a couple of pounds.

We all were treated to some beautiful trail rides planned and led by members, Heidi Collings, and Shiela Segien's 17-year-old daughter, Bekah Segien.   It was wonderful for "those of us who mainly ride in desert terrain" to ride the high mountain trails among the tall pine trees.

Our annual meeting, Sunday afternoon was a treat for all horse lovers as we welcomed New Mexico resident Jim Hall and his wife Pat to join us.  Jim presented a digital slide-show about the current status of the McKinley Horses, about 80 to 100 of which remain on the old McKinley-Romero ranch.  

The annual meeting was a wonderful opportunity for SBHA members to get together, rekindle old friendships, and start new ones. I can hardly wait for next year!

Below, is a slide show of some photos from the September, 2010, Burro Mountain Homestead meeting.  Thanks go to Heidi Collings, John Mayer, Carol Roberts and Maureen Kirk-Detberner for their photos.

The McKinley Horses

Please enjoy the photos taken by Jim Hall of the McKinley Horses in the slideshow below:.  D. Phillip Sponenberg, DVM, PhD describes these horses in his paper North American Colonial Spanish Horse Update as follows:

"One important rancher strain from New Mexico is the Romero/McKinley strain. These are from a ranch near Cebolla, New Mexico where Spanish type horses were raised for generations. The Romero ranch passed to the McKinley family, who still maintain a few horses of the original strain. These are raised extensively in a nearly wild situation on large ranges. These horses figure heavily in some lines of Spanish Barb horses. Alan Bell of Texas was instrumental in acquiring and taming several horses from the McKinley ranch in 2000; an effort which greatly boosted the impact of this strain on the conservation effort. These horses come in a wide variety of dark as well as dun colors."


Junior Member Bekah's 2010 Summer "Cowgirl" Vacation 

Southern Californian, Bekah Segien left her Spanish Barb, Slim Shadey in her mothers care to spend the last months of her summer high school vacation at Heidi and Jerry Collings', Dripping Springs Ranch, located in Southwestern New Mexico, West of Silver City.  There was lots of work to do; starting young horses, working cattle and enjoying the life of a cowgirl. Below, are photos of Bekah's excellent adventure this summer.  What great examples of the easy dispositions of these wonderful, young horses. 


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