Meridian (horse)

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Meridian (horse).jpg
Meridian with R.F. Carman and jockey Archibald at 1911 Kentucky Derby.
GrandsireBen Brush
DamSue Smith
CountryUnited States
BreederCharles Leonard Harrison
Owner1. Charles L. Harrison
2. Richard F. Carman
3. William Garth
TrainerAlbert Ewing
Record66: 20-15-10
Major wins
Kentucky Derby (1911)
National Handicap (1911)
Frontier Stakes (1911)
Washington's Birthday Handicap (1912)
Argyle Hotel Handicap (1912)
Kentucky Stakes (1912)
Excelsior Handicap (1913)
Triple Crown Race wins:
Kentucky Derby (1911)
Unofficial American Champion Three-Year-Old Male Horse (1911)
Unofficial American Horse of the Year (1911)
Last updated on January 9, 2010

Meridian (1908–1935) was an American Thoroughbred racehorse that won the 1911 Kentucky Derby, setting a new record by running 1​14 miles in 2 minutes, 5 seconds.[1] The previous record of 2:06​14 had been set by Lieut. Gibson in the 1900 Derby. Meridian was determined to be the historical Champion Three-Year Old and Horse of the Year of 1911.


Meridian was foaled at Charles L. Harrison's farm in Bellevue, Kentucky in 1908. Charles Harrison (1856–1912) was a civil engineer by trade and was a designer of the Cincinnati and Eastern Railway.[2] Meridian's dam was Sue Smith, winner of the 1905 Astoria Stakes, who was sired by the imported British stallion Masetto.[3] Meridian's sire was Broomstick, son of 1896 Kentucky Derby winner Ben Brush, who was then standing at the Senorita Stock Farm in Lexington, Kentucky.

Racing career[edit]

Meridian won three of his 12 starts as a two-year-old, gaining third place in the 1910 Foam Stakes and second place in the Sheepshead Bay Double Event while racing for Harrison in New York.[3] Harrison had consigned the Thoroughbred to be sold in a July 1910 sale at the Sheepshead Bay Race Track, but withdrew him because the bidding was not high enough. Richard Carman was also at the auction and purchased a horse called The Turk.[4]

Meridian was bought by New Yorker Richard F. Carman as a three-year old and was placed in the Kentucky Derby against a field of seven horses. Meridian started from the fifth post position and was a steady contender for most of the race and was able to outrun a rapidly advancing Governor Gray.[1] Meridian continued to race until he was six years old before being retired from racing to be used as a breeding stallion by Carman.

Stud career[edit]

Richard Carman retired Meridian to his stud farm, called Carmandale, in Silver Spring, Maryland in 1915.[5] His most notable offspring for Carman was the colt Carmandale (b. 1917, out of Daruma) who won the 1919 Whirl Stakes and Wakefield Handicap. Carmandale was a fast runner, but was injured in the Climax Handicap at Havre de Grace Race Track in Maryland on April 21, 1923[6] and had to be euthanized.[7]

Carmandale Stud was destroyed by an October 3, 1922 fire in which Carman lost 15 pregnant broodmares and 10 foals, which amounted to $95,000. Meridian, The Turk and three mares survived the fire because they were housed in a separate barn. The fire was suspected to be arson, due to Richard Carman disrupting the activities of local rum runners.[5]

Carman sold Meridian in 1923 to horse trainer William Garth, who owned Inglecrest Farm in Charlottesville, Virginia.[8] Paul Jones, the winner of the 1920 Kentucky Derby, was also owned by Garth and was kept at the farm.[9] During the late 1920s, Meridian sired Glen Wild (b. 1926), who won the Riggs Handicap and North Shore Handicap. Meridian died in 1935.[10]

Pedigree of Meridian (bay, 1908)
b. 1901
Ben Brush
b. 1893
Bramble Bonnie Scotland
Ivy Leaf
Roseville Reform
ch. 1893
Galliard Galopin
Sylvabelle Bend Or
Saint Editha
Sue Smith
ch. 1903
b. 1888
St. Simon Galopin
Saint Angela
Lady Abbess Cathedral
Lady Sophie
Ethel Lee
b. 1894
Whistle Jacket Hermit
Marmora Falsetto


  1. ^ a b New York Times. "Meridian's Kentucky Derby." May 14, 1911.
  2. ^ Biographical encyclopedia of the commonwealth of Kentucky. John M. Gresham Co. Publishers, Philadelphia. 1896. pg. 102 [1]
  3. ^ a b Meridian Pedigree and Racing Stats
  4. ^ New York Times. "The Turk Sold for $7,600." July 5, 1910.
  5. ^ a b The Washington Post. "Fire wipes out Carmandale farm." October 3, 1922.
  6. ^ The Washington Post. "Results at Havre de Grace." April 22, 1923.
  7. ^ The Washington Post. "Along the Rail with Harry Stringer." March 20, 1924.
  8. ^ "Garth buys sire Meridian". Daily Racing Form. February 5, 1923. Retrieved 4 June 2010.
  9. ^ Daily Racing Form. "1920 Derby Winner Dead." May 7, 1930.
  10. ^ The American Stud Book. The Jockey Club. 1940. p. 979.