An important and influential stallion in the modern Percheron breed, the Canadian-born son of Justamere Showtime, South Valley Did-It, needs little introduction. This stallion can be credited with building numerous breeding programs and leaving a long-standing impact on our breed. Although no perfect specimen conformationally, Did-It’s different strain of bloodline, along with a front end far ahead of its time, propelled him to prominence; as numerous horsemen and women found breeding niches with the horse when he was crossed with the premier American mare lines of that day.
South Valley Did-It’s first registered offspring is perhaps his most famous. The Did-It son, named DID, was bred by the Robinson Family of Richland, Michigan and would make a mark in the showring as well as the Percheron stud book. As the sire of the renowned Mc Gee, DID finds himself in the pedigrees of a significant percentage of today’s Percherons. Mc Gee was a prolific stallion, leaving sons and daughters that would be responsible and credited for ushering in a new era of Percheron Draft horses. DID’s dam, Princess, would be crossed with South Valley Did-It no less than 15 times, producing notable show and breeding horses with an uncommon regularity. Other notable offspring from this cross include the likes of Valentine, Blizzard, Confetti, World Congressman, Champagne and Calgary. Many of these individuals became influential in breeding programs across the continent.
It is interesting to note that some of Did-It’s most famous and prolific offspring came from the era in which he was owned and utilized by Mrs. R.L. Robinson. However, during this time frame, he rarely registered more than a half-dozen colts each year; nevertheless, a significant percentage of them would go on to prominence. Not the least of these was the Robinson bred mare and Did-It daughter, Midnight Contessa. Midnight Contessa would make her mark on the breed as the dam to the Robinson-bred All American stallion, Trophy; and the Reserve All Americans, Camille and Cousteau. Contessa’s full brother, Count On It, would head south to Ohio, where he was utilized for numerous breeding seasons at William Westbrook’s Buckeye Percherons. Count On It finds his way into many a Percheron pedigree by way of his grandson, Cottonwood Count, a stallion employed by the Torgerson Family of Clearbrook, MN. Cottonwood Count is the sire the mare, Torge Countess, whom some may recognize as the dam of the consistent hitch horse producer, Skyview Count On It (a son of Pleasant View King).
Two other Did-It offspring who hit their stride in the show ring were the John C. Hertel owned mares named Easter Fury’s Grand Coletta and Margo Lee Lismore. Both of these mares were dominant in line classes at some of the nation’s most prestigious shows. Margo Lee Lismore was a full sister to the mare Katy Did, both out of the Robinson-bred La Rex mare, Katy Kazoo. Interestingly, Katy Kazoo was a full sister to the aforementioned mares Princess and Countess. Katy Kazoo’s daughter by Did-It, Katy Did, was bred to South Valley Prince Ha Ha and produced the mare Abbykadabra Kazaam (bred by Mrs. R.L. Robinson’s daughter, Abby Lynn Robinson-West). Kazaam would go on to Cedarfarm Percherons and foal the mare Cedarfarm Willow, a champion hitch mare and a high seller at the first Cedarfarm dispersal sale. While all of these Robinson mares do become difficult to keep straight on paper, its worthwhile, important and interesting to note and reflect upon how Mrs. R.L. Robinson’s consistent breeding methodology speaks out to us through the registry records, even today.
Another Did-It daughter that proved her consistency as a powerful broodmare was the mare Pleasant View Michelle. Michelle is best known as the dam of Pleasant View Michaela, Pleasant View Michael, Pleasant View Murphy, Pleasant View Moby and Pleasant View Melody. Michaela was the auction high at the first ever Mid America Draft Horse Sale. Following in his sister's shoes Murphy was a high selling gelding at the Mid America sale, going to Rovenolt Stables of Turbotville, PA. There, he lead their six-horse hitch and was a winning cart horse. Moby although suffering a broken leg at ten months of age, recovered and sold through Gordyville for $29,000 to the Cape Cod Wood Siding hitch. Melody was a high selling mare at the Gray Transportation dispersal sale, going to Red Oak Farms, where she, too, spent time leading their six horse hitch of mares.
Did-It was also utilized by the late John Welti; just as the breeder had used Did-It’s grandson, Mc Gee, with such success. Often forgotten in the list of prominent Did-It offspring is the Welti mare, Princess Polly. Jim and Peg Day bought the mare from the Welti Estate in May of 1993, and would soon breed her to their Welti-bred stallion, M.G.’s Prince. This the first cross of many, Princess Polly foaled L.D.’s Prince Classy in 1995. By 1998 Classy had been sold to Sterling Farms of Gladwin, MI. In 2000, she topped the Sterling Dispersal sale, garnering the sum of $32,500, purchased by Hames Valley Vineyards of California. In many ways, Classy’s sale helped to solidify M.G.’s Prince daughters as reliable bell-ringers at public auctions across the nation for many years to come. At home, the Day’s were raising and retaining both a younger sister and a younger brother to Classy. The sister was named L.D.’s Prince Elegance and she would become a consistent contender in line-classes at some of the largest shows in the country, earning All American accolades during her time on the tanbark. Classy’s full brother, L.D.’s Prince Genesis, was retained as a stallion to perhaps serve as a successor to his sire, M.G.’s Prince. Genesis also spent time at Hames Valley Vineyards, where he registered several foals. However, it was upon his return to Iowa that Genesis would be bred with the Blue Ribbon Farms Hercules daughter, Blue Ribbon Farms Quintessa, (she bred and owned by Albert and Karen Cleve of Farmington, MO.) This cross would result in his most notable offspring, the multiple All American mare, Blue Ribbon Farms Unique. Unique’s halter career would culminate with a World Championship in 2010 at the Des Moines, Iowa World Percheron Congress. She would then go on to spend time in the Blue Ribbon Days hitch of Percheron Mares.
Did-It would end his final years with Rip Swan under his Sires International banner, based out of Centre Hall, PA. His last foal was registered on July 12th, 1994; 24 years and 3 days after South Valley Did-It was foaled. The longevity of this horse, and the staying power of both his bloodline and contributions to the breed speak volumes to the quality and dominance of this sire. South Valley Did-It will always be remembered as an important cog in the wheels of Percheron progress, and his many prolific descendants carry a similar torch onward, today. Undoubtedly, in the coming years, we will find ourselves discussing subsequent generations and prominent horses that have received their stamp of greatness, in part, from this legendary sire.