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The Percheron 

The Percheronís longevity is due to its ability to adapt to change.  They stand out among the crowd for their ability to perform both as a team and individually.  They are intelligent, hard workers with agility and an amiable disposition. These are some of the reasons NurseValue chose the Percheron as our mascot.   Please, find below the history of the PercheronÖ

The Percheron originated in the Le Perche providence (near Normandy, France). The ancestors of the modern-day Percheron transported knights into battle. They were light, sure-footed and spirited. As agricultural began to take precedence over battles, Percheron were bred more for size, weight and strength.

By the 17th century horses produced in Le Perche had attained widespread notoriety and were in demand for a variety of roles. These animals were smaller and easily adapted to pulling the heavy mail coaches of France.

In 1823, a horse named Jean La Blanc was foaled in Le Perche. All of today's Percheron bloodlines trace directly to this horse.

Edward Harris of Moorestown, NJ first imported Percherons to the US in 1839.  Only two of the horses survived the journey.  One was a mare named Joan and the other was a stallion called Diligence.  These horses established the American Percheron breed.  Diligence sired over 400 foals with three recorded among the foundation stock in the first American Percheron stud book in 1876.

Importation of the Percheron ended until 1851, when Normandy, Gray Bill and Louis Napoleon arrived.  Louis Napoleon had a profound effect on the Percheron breed in America and is owners were instrumental in the forming of the Percheron Association in 1876.

Thousands of Percherons were imported to Americas in the last half of the 19th century, and they continued to increase until World War II. The Percheron became the favorite of both the American farmer and the teamster (freight movers over the nationís city streets).

The Percheronís popularity continued to increase.  By 1930, the census showed three times as many registered Percherons as the other draft breed combined.  Following World War II, the invention of the tractor made the breed nearly extinct.   However, a few farmers (including many Amish) were dedicated to the preservation of the breed and kept it alive through the next 20 years. 

The late 1960s saw a renaissance in the draft horse.  Today, Percherons are found working in the fields of small farms and thousands are used for recreation (hayrides, sleigh rides and parades).   Percherons are shown in competition hitching, halter and riding classes at many state and local fairs across the country. They are also used in advertising and the promotion of business. The Percheron is a common sight on many city streets due to the popularity of the carriage ride.



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