Horse Shoeing

by Jack Keegan


My Father was a neighbor and friend of Mr. Richard Ryan who lived on Brill Street. Mr. Ryan was a blacksmith, who worked for the city of Newark.

Many times my Father took me to the stable where Mr. Ryan worked. It was great to see him take the leg of a large Belgium Draft horse, put it between his legs and remove the nails that held the steel shoe on. Then he would take a new shoe and fit it to that animal. If not just right it was heated red hot and hammered into the right fit. It was then thrust into cold water to cool it, and then placed on the horses hoof. It was then nailed, with cut nails, to the hoof.

It was amazing to me that the animals never seemed to mind this procedure. They very seldom kicked, perhaps they knew that standing on three legs, doing that they would fall down. And Mr. Ryan went around replacing shoes on all four feet. A job not seen in many places these days.


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