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1970 horseshoeing class

1970 horseshoeing class

April 1970: High school students from around Sacramento County take a horseshoeing class at the old state fairgrounds.

This photo by staff photographer John Malmin accompanied a story by staff writer Charles Hillinger in the April 13, 1970, Los Angeles Times:

“Put your leg up,” shouted the pert 17-year-old as she wrestled with a 1,200-pound horse, trying to get it to lift a front leg.

“Blast it! Stop moving around,” yelled Val Campos.

“That’s right. Get mad. Cuss him out,” kibitzed Larry Fisk. “Get his leg bent. It isn’t bent enough Val.

“Now you’re doing it. That’s the ticket.”

Bent over and grasping the horse’s leg under her left arm, Val began filing the hoof with a rasp.

Val Campos is one of the three girls and 17 boys enrolled in what is believed to be the only high school course in horseshoeing in the nation.

Conducted in the dairy products barn at the now vacated old State Fair Grounds at Sacramento, it draws students from various high schools around Sacramento County.

On graduation in June they will go to work earning $10,000 to $12,000 a year. …

Richard C. Payne, director of vocational education for Sacramento County, says the high school class in horseshoeing was started last September because of the “acute shortage of horseshoers all over America.”

Larry Fisk, 39, a professional farrier for 15 years and graduate of Oregon State University, was hired as the instructor.

Fisk assembled 20 shoeing stations–forge, anvil, etc.–and the students spend two hours each afternoon learning the art of horseshoeing. They attend regular classes in the morning at their respective schools.

“There’s been a phenomenal population explosion in pleasure horses,” Fisk said. “Horses are being ridden barefooted simply because of the great shortage of shoers.

“There are more than 9 million horses in the United States–more than there were at the turn of the century before the automobile.”  …

A salary of $10,000 a year in 1970 would be about $60,000 today.

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1 Comment

  1. March 18, 2015, 10:23 pm

    I've had two women shoers over 40 plus years of owning horses. They were the very best shoers out of probably about seven total. They actually got on better with the horses than the men. The only problem was that the physical toll on their bodies developed earlier than the guys.

    By: Terri

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