History PhD, Yale University
History MPhil, Yale University
History MA, Yale University
American Studies BA, Amherst College, Summa cum laude
What got you in to history? In to equine history?
I can’t even remember when I figured out that I wanted to do something that involved history. And I’ve been a horse person for even longer than that– it’s my mother’s fault, since she and her sisters put me on a horse basically before I could walk. I was in my first year of a PhD program in history and looking for something to read that was NOT related to my academic life, and I picked up Ed Hotaling’s book on black jockeys. The first thing I noticed was that the guys in his sources talked about horses the same way people I’d grown up with had, and I realized that equine history was a thing I could do. It was probably the best day of my professional life.
Who is your favorite historical horse?
Too many to have a real favorite. But I really would have liked to see Lexington and Lecomte in their races in the 1850s.
What are you working on right now?
I’m working on a shorter study about the projection of the qualities of human females on mares and how that’s affected how they’ve been perceived by both racing professionals and fans. So there’s everything in there–from theory about how women relate to horses to critical readings of Facebook and Zenyatta.com. Any suggestions welcome!
Read Katherine Mooney’s review of Mr. Darley’s Arabian here.