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Important August Belmont Letter

Important August Belmont Letter

ADDENDUM: This letter is signed by August Belmont, Jr. and NOT August Belmont as was originally stated in the printed catalog and online. An incredibly important hand-signed letter, with original envelope, dated December 28, 1894, written by August Belmont to the famous equine writer and racing official, Walter S. Vosburgh. Belmont praised the latter’s articles in The Horseman agreeing with the assessment and recommendations to have in place an industry plan of action instead of repeatedly lamenting dire forecasts predicting either the end of racing or a markedly downsized product. Vosburgh had pointed out racing’s problems stemmed from a lack of strong leadership and called for a dynamic and respected individual to step forward unifying the sport and ending widespread corruption. A few days after writing the letter Belmont was elected chairman of the recently formed Jockey Club established to oversee all racing matters. A board had been elected in the interim without naming a new chairman, but it was implicit he would be given the role upon his consent. The inspirational words of the prominent journalist perhaps led Belmont to accept the position. The letter refers to articles in The Horseman, specifically “Our Eastern Letter,” dated 12/13/1894, p. 1550 and “The Necessity of Racing,” p. 1552. Copies of the respective pages are included. Note: The Horseman 12/27/1894, p. 1675 stated Belmont appears in line to be named chairman.

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