Black Swamp Driving Club 1989 Officers


President: Henry zumFelde

Vice President: Peter Kolan

Secretary-Treasurer: Chari Rutledge

And the other directors: Joe Bell, Robert Buchhop, July Petree



BSDC 1989 Newsletters

By Chari Rutledge


January 1989 BSDC Newsletter

Happy New Year!! I hope one of your resolutions is to come to the Sleigh Rally in February. Hopefully we will have just the right amount of snow this month so that the rally on February 5 will be a great success.

Our hosts, Connie and Gary Gillfillan have extended the following invitation to all Black Swamp members.

The Sleigh Rally will be held on Sunday, February 5 at 1:00 p.m., but in case of no snow the date will be Sunday, February 12. Please come on the 12th even if there isnít snow just for a get together. (Gary informed me that everyone will get a sleigh ride even if there isnít snow!?)

Contact the Gillfillans by February 3 at 419/675-3257 if you plan to bring a horse and tell how many plan to attend.

Take State Route 68 south from Findlay till you pass State Route 701 south of Dunkirk. Take the next road, County Road 80 at the big church (Walnut Grove Church). Turn left, go to the first stop sign. Turn right. Itís the first house. Watch for signs.

Our host will provide hot chocolate and cookies after the drive.

It sounds like a wonderful afternoon. I am really looking forward to it as Santa brought me an antique four passenger sleigh and I canít wait to try it out.

Letís hear it for snow and a good turnout on the 5th, or the 12th as the case may be!!


February 1989 BSDC Newsletter


At this writing we are still hoping for snow for the February 5 Sleigh Rally at Gillfillanís in Kenton. You may or may not receive this edition of the Corral before then but if you do, remember to give Gillfillans a call at 419/675-3257 and give them a count of how many plan to attend. They want to know even if youíre not bringing a horse. If there is no snow on the 5th we will go on the 12th. Snow or no snow on the 12th we will have a get together and if you want to bring carts instead of sleighs there are back roads to drive on. Complete details on how to get to Gillfillans were in the January CORRAL. If you have pitched them ask Gillfillans for directions when you call to tell them youíre coming. The rally starts at 1:00. Refreshments will be served.

Our March meeting will be held in Findlay on Sunday, March 12 at 2:00 p.m. at a place yet to be determined. Details will be in the March Corral. Our speaker will be Dr. Gary Cotton, DVM, who will speak on all aspects of Equine Care. Have your questions ready.

Another date for your calendar. Sunday, May 21. We will have a pleasure drive at Andrewís Farm near Defiance. This was such a hit last year we thought weíd schedule a repeat.

Donít forget your 1989 membership dues! Membership runs on a calendar year. All members as of March 1, 1989 will receive a membership roster, by laws and a safe driving booklet. Use the membership form published in the CORRAL.

March 1989 BSDC Newsletter


Who would have believed we would have snow on February 5 for the Black Swamp Sleigh Rally? Surely not me!! On February 1 it was over 50 degrees and I actually saw people in shorts in downtown Findlay. It started snowing here in earnest on Saturday night and a quick call to Gary Gillfillan said "Itís go on Sunday." So go we did and everyone had a wonderful time. There were seven turnouts and about forty people, some from as far away as Indiana.

We, (my husband, Ham and I), didnít have our act together, so our new sleigh didnít get tried out. But we had a great time especially Ham who drove Gary and Connie Gillfillanís pony and had the best time ever. Gillfillans had some of their sleighs on display. One very unusual and beautiful piece is a wicker basket cutter from the estate of President McKinley. There were plenty of refreshments and a warm garage where we all gathered to warm up and visit.

Our next get together will be on Sunday, March 12 at 1:00 p.m. when Dr. Gary Cotton, DVM will speak to us on equine health. The meeting will be held in Findlay at the Hancock County Engineers Office at 1900 Lima Ave. Take exit 156 off of I-75. This puts you on Highway 68 heading south. Get off at Lima Avenue. The Engineerís Office is at 1900 Lima Ave., at the corner of Carlin Street and Lima Avenue.


April 1989 BSDC Newsletter


Our March meeting in Findlay was well attended and our very interesting speaker, Dr. Gary Cotton, DVM., focused his talk on preventable diseases. He stressed the necessity of immunizing your horses against these diseases, especially if you are showing your horses. Potomac Horse Fever will probably be a concern in this area in the future and he suggests immunizing against it. He paid a compliment to the carriage driving world in that he said conditioning is a major factor in preventing lameness and because people training driving horses are aware of this he sees much less incidence of lameness in driving horses.

John and Beth Lynch of Metamora, Michigan attended the meeting. John is the regional representative of the American Driving Society. He spoke about the ADS and what it is doing to become an active advocate for carriage driving and what it has to offer us individually and as a driving club. Dennis Foulkrod State representative for the ADS also attended the meeting.

Laura Frizzel, a BSDC member from Michigan, explained about the Michigan Horse Drawn Vehicle Association, Spring Pleasure Driving Show in Battle Creek, Michigan on May 14, BSDC members will receive show information.

We will not have a club event in April, but there will be a board of directors meeting at Henry zumFeldís on Thursday, April 13 at 7:00 p.m. All members are welcome at board meetings.

Our next event will be a drive at Andrewís farm near Defiance on Sunday, May 21. Watch the May CORRAL for details.

Remember, Spring is almost here and itís time to make sure harness, horse and vehicle are ready for the driving season. To give you a little help getting ready all members will receive a booklet, "Drive Smartly-Drive Safely" which contains lots of excellent driving tips and advice. For those of you who couldnít attend the March meeting, your booklet and BSDC membership roster will be mailed to you.

Extra booklets are available through the secretary for $1 each. By the way, I hope all Black Swamp members take time to read the Western Reserve Carriage Association news in the CORRAL every month. Their safety tip of the month feature is great!


May 1989 BSDC Newsletter


One sure sign that spring is here (even if the temperature feels like winter) is horse hair all over the place. It gets in your eyes, in your mouth and in your clothes. The only positive thing about it is that it is a sure sign of warmer days and good driving weather to come!

The Black Swamp April board meeting at Henry zumFeldís finalized plans for our Sunday, May 21 drive at T.M. and Gretchen Andrews farm near Defiance. Andrewís attended the meeting and gave us all the details. The drive will be approximately 8 miles of roads and fields with shorter options available. It will begin at 1:00 p.m., so plan to arrive in time. After the drive we will have a potluck so bring a dish to share, table service and drinks. Coffee will be provided and refrigeration and heating will be available for food dishes.

Directions to the farm are: go three miles north of Defiance on Highway 66 to Banner School Road; go west on Banner School Road to Evansport Road; right on Evansport to the third house on the right.

Everyone enjoyed this outing so much last year. By the way, all turnouts will be checked by the safety committee before starting on the drive.

Put these dates for future BSDC events on your calendar:

July 22: Sauderís Village, parade and drive

September 16-17: Pioneer Days, Kenton, Ohio

If there are any questions about any of the events please call a board member listed with this article.

See you May 21 !!!

June 1989 BSDC Newsletter


Carriage driving has many aspects. You can enjoy a nice drive across farm and on the roads; you can do parades; wow your friends, ("You do what on weekends?"); you can show at the fair or go to a pleasure driving show. You can even go to a Carriage conference. Black Swamp drivers seem to be doing all of the above. As secretary I talk to quite a few BSDC members every month and they certainly have been busy this spring. Several couples attended the Carriage Association of Americaís Conference at the Opryland Hotel in Nashville in April. Everyone agreed it was an interesting experience with something for everyone, from harnessing demonstrations to carriage restoration lectures.

Several members attended a pleasure driving show on May 14 put on by the Michigan Horse Drawn Vehicle Association and organized by BSDC member Laura Frizzel. If was a wonderful show and Laura ordered special weather. It was cool and sunny most of the day. Yours truly took her horse to the show. It was a terrific day. Ham and I did a true family drive class Ė complete with an argument. "Youíre going to run into that pony, watch out for the rail, etc., etc." Then he wanted to drive the Gentlemenís Working Pleasure Class Ė and he did Ė with his back seat driver. I was a wreck. This was the first time heíd ever driven in a class by himself. I have to admit he did a great job and the judge thought so too. He got his first blue ribbon and a silver trophy to boot. Now heís really impossible!!

In a more serious note: Henry zumFelde and his committee have put together the details for the Sauder Museum Drive. He writes: An antique carriage exhibit will be sponsored by the Black Swamp Driving Club in cooperation with the Sauder Museum on Saturday, July 22, 1989 at the museum. It is located one mile north of Archbold, Ohio on Ohio Route 2 and Ohio Route 66."

Those arriving with carriages for display or drive should use the west entrance to the parking lot where they will be directed to the assembly area. Owners of antique vehicles are encouraged to bring them for display even though they do not plan to drive them in the parade. Antique vehicles should have a card with as much information as possible, manufacturers name, approximate year, description of vehicle, owners name and any other interesting facts. Permission has been granted for those who desire to drive the parade route through the museum grounds between 8:30 and 9:30 a.m. when the museum is closed to the public. The parade of turnouts will begin at 12 noon through the museum grounds. A public address system will be used to describe turnouts to the public. Period dress is encouraged for the parade, but not required. Turnout information forms should be completed and returned to Henry zumFelde, 4436 Co. Road 13, Wauseon, Ohio 43567, phone 419/335-7746.

For advance publicity purposes entries should be made by July 1, although entries will be accepted until parade time.

There will be no entry fees and all those who participate in the parade will be given 4 one-day passes (per turnout) to the museum, valid during the 1989 season.

After the parade, time will be allowed to change clothes of vehicles before starting the 13 mile country drive (or alternate shorter drives). Bring your own refreshments for the drive. Refrigerators are available in the shelter house.

The above information and an entry form will be mail to all BSDC driving club members in early June. Interested persons not members of BSDC may contact Henry for information. Safe Driving!!


July 1989 BSDC Newsletter


The turnout for the drive at Andrewís farm in May was incredible. It was a great driving day but the fields and tracks were soggy from all the rain so we took to the roads. I think we had about 15 turnouts and there must have been at least 50 people for the potluck dinner after the drive. All in all it was a wonderful get-together. It was decided that we had outgrown Andrewís farm with so many people so the board is investigating other sites for drives. Club members, if you have any ideas for places to drive please call a board member. We want to schedule more drives for next year and we need your input. Many thanks to the Andrews for being such gracious hosts to so many people.

Our next drive is coming up quickly. The Sauderís Museum parade and drive is July 22nd. Hopefully all club members have received their information packets and have sent their information to Henry zum Felde. In last months CORRAL article I neglected to mention that there will be a potluck supper at Sauderís after the drive. Refrigeration will be available.

The September activity will be Pioneer Days at the Hardin County Fairgrounds. This promises to be a fun outing. Full details will be in the August Corral, so mark September 16-17 on your calendar.

On September 10th, The Black Swamp members have been invited to participate in the Little Brown Jug Festival Parade for Horses in Delaware, OH. Last yearís parade had 231 horses in it with 15 breeds represented. They would like our members to participate. Those interested in attending should contact Chari Rutledge at 419/423-587 for entry blanks.

August 1989 BSDC Newsletter


Iím writing this newsletter from our cottage in Northern Wisconsin. Itís hard to believe itís so hot in Ohio when I actually need a fire in the fireplace to be comfortable up here. Though I'í miles away, Iím not totally out of touch. A letter from Gary Gillfillan, chairman of our September event, provided me with the following details. The event is the Pioneer Craft Days at the Hardin County Fairgrounds in Kenton, Ohio, on September 16 & 17. Gary writes, "We will be having a two day exhibit, parade, log skidding, plowing demonstration, obstacle course and pleasure driving. Period dress of the late 1800ís is encouraged.

On September 16th, after exhibits close, the Black Swamp Driving Club will be having a chicken B.B.Q. and potluck supper. Members are to bring their own soft drinks, table service and a covered dish. We will have a half of chicken for sale at a price of $2.50 per serving. If you want to purchase chicken, please send money and a number youíll need to us before September 1. Also let us know if youíll be needing a camp site. Send to either: Gary & Connie Gillfillan, 7127 CR 167, Kenton, Ohio 43326, (419)675-3257 or Mark & June Newman, 12343 SR 67 West, Kenton, Ohio 43326 (419)675-2843.

Those arriving with carriages for display or drive should use the main entrance Friday night and the East Entrance Saturday or Sunday. Signs will be posted.

Owners of antique vehicles are encouraged to bring them for display even though they do not plan to drive them. There will be housing for carriages and horses.

Antique vehicles should have a card with as much information as possible with owners name and any other interesting facts to display.

When you reach Kenton, take State Route 68 south to Fairground Road. Watch for signs.

If this newsletter gets to you before August 6th and you werenít at Sauders Drive on the 22nd of July you may not know that there is a drive on August 6 at Jim and Becky Robertsons, 13468 Ovitt Road, Perrysburg, Ohio (419) 823-1052. This was put together after the July Corral deadline. Assuming this newsletter arrives before August 6th and you want more information, call the Robertsons or a board member.

September 1989 BSDC Newsletter


This has been a busy summer for Black Swamp drivers and itís not over yet. The drive at Sauders Museum on July 22nd was a great success. More than 30 turnouts participated in the parade. The weather was HOT! And some people chose not to wear their costumes, but those who did looked wonderful and were greatly appreciated by the large crowd of spectators. Announcers Rich Beach and John Tschanz provided a commentary during the parade. Thanks guys! Then the group took to the roads for various length drives. It was a hot day but that didnít stop anyone. After the drive approximately 90 people sat down to one of the best potluck dinners Iíve ever seen. It has been suggested that we change our name to the Black Swamp Driving and Eating Club and add a crossed knife and fork to our logo. It was a wonderful day and many thanks to Henry zumFelde and all his helpers who organized it. By the way, Sauders wants us back next year on July 21st. Put it on your calendar.

Our nest venture was a lovely drive at Jim and Becky Robertsonís farm near Perrysburg on August 6th. Unfortunately all club members didnít get the information in time as we planned this rather last minute. We had seven turnouts and it was a nice drive through tracks, fields and roads. We also had a great potluck there we were, eating again! Thanks to the Robertsons. Please invite us back again. Iíd like to go back just to try that railroad track crossing again.

Coming up on the schedule is Pioneer Days at the Hardin County Fairgrounds in Kenton, OH on September 16th and 17th. This promises to be a fun affair. The details were in last monthsí Corral. Gary Gillfillan chairman of the event, will be sending flyers to all club members with entry information. This event offers lots of variety. There will be plenty of time and space to drive. Weíll have a costumed parade and weíll be setting up some obstacle and cone courses for you to practice on. There will be a chicken barbecue on Saturday night. Come and have some fun!

On October 1st weíll be driving at the Henry County Fairgrounds on Highway 108 south of Napoleon but within the city limits. Bob Buchhop is the drive organizer and can be reached at 419/598-8912 if you have any questions. Since the army travels on its stomach we will have out potluck first, at 12:30. Bring table service and a dish to share. Coffee and pop will be available. There will be an obstacle course to drive and our road drive will begin at 3 p.m. It will be 7 miles long over paved and gravel roads. The only obstacles being a few hills, intersections and pot holes. The drive will be marked and there will be a 5 mile short option available. There is plenty of parking on grass available at the fairgrounds.

On October 15th Deb Beachís mother has invited us to use her beautiful Heritage Farm as a base for a super drive through the back roads around Gilboa. The farm has plenty of parking for our trucks. There is a lovely grove of trees with picnic tables for our potluck. The back roads are winding, mostly paved, some gravel, with lots of woods and a river to drive along. There are options from 5 to 15 miles. If the fall colors are on display this should be a gorgeous drive. Mark it on your calendar. Full details in the October Corral

A reminder to all of you carriage drivers! Donít forget to display a slow moving vehicle sign on the back of your carriage. You must have one if you drive on the road Ė Itís Ohio law!

October 1989 BSDC Newsletter


Summer is over, the horse flies are gone, but some of the best driving days are still before us.

Coming up on Sunday, October 15th will be a drive at Heritage Hills Farm near Gilboa, Ohio. The farm is owned by Deb Beachís mother, May Baldridge, who has graciously invited us to use the farm as a base for our drive. Take Main Street in Gilboa west for about 1-1/2 miles. The farm will be on the right Ė look for the Black Swamp sign. We will begin with a potluck at 12:30 pm. Coffee will be available, but bring your own pop. We will drive at 2:00 pm. There will be two marked drives Ė one approximately 14 Ĺ miles and one about 6 Ĺ miles. It will be over paved and gravel roads and the only hazard is an iron girder bridge at which we will have ground assistance. This should be an absolutely beautiful drive if the leaves are still in color. If they arenít, itís no problem as we will be driving some of the nicest roads Iíve seen in this area. They must have been laid out by the indians as there are twists and turns and not just all the usual one mile squares. This will be the last scheduled drive of the year. If you have any questions, call Rick and Deb Beach at (419) 432-2214.

On Sunday November 12th we will have our annual meeting which will be held at the American Legion Hall in Ridgeville Corners. Ridgeville Corners is about 6 miles west of Napoleon on Route 6. From Route 6, turn south on County Road 19, drive about ľ mile to the Legion Hall. There is a sign for the hall at the junction of 6 and 19. The plan for the evening is to begin at 5:00 p.m. with a half hour of social time. Dinner will be at 5:30. After dinner we will have a speaker and the annual meeting. Hopefully by starting this early, we will have time to visit afterward and still get home at a reasonable hour.

Our speaker will be Heike Bean from Hampton, Connecticut. She owned Xenophon Farm and trains horses for pleasure and combined driving.

Come prepared to eat. Chairman Bob Buchhop says the ladies who are preparing our meal really put on a feast. Adults are $10 and children under 12 are $8. Reservations must be in by November 1st. If you have any questions call Bob Buchhop at 419/598-8912 or Henry zumFelde 419/335.7746. Please use the reservation form in this monthís Corral to make your reservations.

Two Black Swamp families competed in the Walnut Hill Driving Competition in August this year. Speaking as a member of one of those families, it was quite an experience. It is reputed to be the largest pleasure driving show in the U.S. The show is held in Pittsford, New York at one of the most beautiful locations Iíve ever seen. Ham and I were shaking in our shoes and werenít helped much by the fact that the first thing my horse did was escape from his stall. Thanks goodness David Schnieder, a fellow Black Swamp member caught him. I was sooo embarrassed!! We had a wonderful time though and really didnít do too badly as we won a blue ribbon for our section of the Presentation Pleasure Drive. Schneiders had a great time too. They won the Pony Pair Championship with their Norwegian Fjords.