UVM Rarity, 1990-2006

UVM RarityUVM Rarity 1990-2006 UVM Elite X UVM Happy

UVM Rarity was my first Morgan mare.  I was introduced to the Morgan breed thru my family’s two mares: Laine’s Dawn and Diana’s Dawn, but Rarity was the first mare that I purchased.  Jackie Brittain and I found Rarity when we went on our first horse adventure in Vermont.  We were looking for a few good Morgan geldings, all-purpose riding horses for the ranch.  On our rounds we visited several wonderful Morgan Farms including East of Equinox (where I purchased Jazzman), UVM Morgan Horse Farm where we met UVM Happy, a UVM top producer and a gorgeous, big, feminine mare, and Destiny Morgans where we saw several young prospects for sale.

Rarity arrives in FloridaWhile looking around at Destiny Morgans Jackie pointed to a horse out in the pasture and said, “Look at that mare!”  Rarity was stunning and everything a Morgan mare should be: huge eyes, little ears, chiseled, feminine head, elegant arched neck, short, smooth back and a full flowing mane and tail. She was a shiny dark brown and she knew she was special.  Coincidently she was a UVM Happy daughter.  Rarity was not on the sales list but after a little persistent pestering, her owner Gladys Severance sold us this exceptional mare.

Rarity and DianaRarity’s pedigree reads like a who’s who of the UVM Breeding program. Her sire line: UVM Elite by the great UVM Watchman, her dam’s sire line: UVM Highlight by Orcland Vigildawn, and of course her dam the great UVM Happy considered one of UVM’s top mares.   While with Gladys at Destiny Morgans, Rarity had two very nice sons, Breeders Maestro and Breeders Crescendo both by the stallion, Santini.

Rarity and EmmaWhen Rarity came home to Central Florida we started riding her with the thought of going to a show or two.  She soon earned the nicknames, Madame Zoom Zoom and Rare Mare.  She was a hot one!  So, after conversations with owners of UVM bred Morgans we learned that the “hot’ runs in some UVM lines and they are perfect to cross with large, athletic, solid minded Morgans that will result in an ideal Morgan offspring.  We decided to send Rarity to Courage of Equinox to be bred.

Elaine Wold and Rarity at 16 yearsRarity was a survivor!  She experienced two near fatal events in her life that would have ‘done in’ a lesser horse.  Not Rarity.  She was determined to make it through both of these disasters.  Her first near death experience came when her rectum was severely torn.  No one knows exactly how it happened but if she had not been taken to the equine hospital immediately she surely would have died.  After seven months in the hospital, and a bill several times larger that her purchase price, Rarity went to Meg Preston’s Rumbrook Farm to complete her recuperation.   Meg took good care of Rarity for about a year and when she was ready to resume a normal horse life we decided to send her to Saralin Morgan Horse farm and Sally Longenecker.  She would have a good life there and possibly even return to breeding.

Rarity and her friends.Rarity paid me back for all the worry and expense by giving me three beautiful foals: Emma, Fabien and Harmony.  Merriewold Emma is by Nemours Noble Elegance and was purchased by the Bodnar family of Merriehill Morgans while still at Rarity’s side.  Emma was shown as a yearling and became Reserve World Champion Yearling Filly in hand.  Merriewold Fabien, by Lyonhil Quasar started his training in working western, reining and cutting, and was then purchased by Stacy Mclain as her all around pleasure horse and trail partner.  Fabien has Rarity’s gorgeous looks and energy along with Quasar’s size and athletic ability.  Rarity’s last foal is Merriewold Harmony by Beethoven.  She is an elegant filly with that extra attitude needed to be a top contender in the show arena.  She is currently in training with Luman Wadhams.

Merriewold HarmonyRarity was bred one more time but lost the foal early in the pregnancy. This was the beginning of her second life threatening challenge.  Rarity lost all control of the muscles in her hindquarter, including her tail and rectum (not legs).  She was in the hospital for several weeks and at one point her chances of living were not good.  But she wasn’t in pain and while there was hope we didn’t give up.  More importantly, Rarity wouldn’t give up: she wasn’t ready to go!

Rarity at 20 years oldRarity returned to Saralin and was slowly and lovingly eased back to a “retired” routine.  She lived happily one more year out at pasture.  She had her friends, good Kentucky grass and the leisure she had earned.  One afternoon when she was on her way to the barn for the evening meal she just lay down and was gone.  She picked her time.  She always was in charge.


Click here to view Rarity’s Pedigree Page and Photo Album.


Additional Comments by Diane Benoit:


My daughter was reading the tribute to UVM Rarity and showed it to me.  We bought Breeders Maestro from Dawn Severence, Gladys daughter, in 2005.  He was one of the first foals from UVM Rarity.  He is living the good life still in Vt, we built a 4-stall horse barn this past summer ( Dawn refers to it as a house not a barn!) and brought him to his forever home.  He is fourteen now and is ridden by my three girls 10, 12, and 14.  They trail ride him and show him in the local Morgan circuit.  He still  takes the blue ribbons!

He is an awesome horse and treats each one of my girls differently when they are riding him. He still has the energy of a 2 year old but is kind and very safe . It was fun to read how Rarity was nicknamed zoom-zoom!   I hope we will be lucky enough to have him 26 years like Rarity.

Your website is great and its fun to see how beautiful some of Maestros relatives are!  If your interested I can send a picture of him.


Diane Benoit