Fred entered each horsepulling contest
with intensity, passion and respect for the industry, the horses and the other
people involved in the Barnyard competitions. Fred farms just enough to
keep him and his horses working. After 37 years of working for the Kellogg
Cereal Company in Battle Creek, Fred Herr extended his draft horse work beyond
the pulling arena, by serving Tillerís International.
Tillerís International, located in Scotts
(MI), teaches people from around the world how to use the draft animals
available to them. Tillerís also shows folks how to build the tools to use
with their animals. Fred has been sharing his expertise with those in need
of this learning. Early rural American skills are still current and
valuable in underdeveloped countries. The skills of farming with horses
Fred Herr hasnít missed a Prairieville
program in two decades. He is known for getting his lines into the hands
of a student and then dropping out of sight so the student had to learn by
driving. Fred has used this technique with many of the students taking
classes at Tillerís International.
Fred also turns up at many local plow
days to participate as well as keeping abreast of what is going on within the
draft horse industry. He pulls in the Barnyard Contests because these are
the most in harmony with his draft horse philosophy. He believes that a
horse that is working at a comfortable weight will do the best work, and horses
are at their best when their systems are clean.
While Fred participates with his own
horses in Barnyard Pulling Contests, his children and grand children will make a
pulling contest by themselves if no other teamsters turn out.
The Herrís are competitive and like good
horses, which they also use in their construction, logging and farming
Fred is also a member of the Michigan
Horsepulling Boat Association, which nominated him for the Michigan Draft Horse
Pulling Hall Of Fame.
Photo courtesy of Cecil E. Darnell