By Stan Wise
American News, Aberdeen, S.D.
Marg Forseth entered her first horse show when she was 4 years old.
She didn’t win.
Seventy-four years later, she remembers that when she came out of the ring, she threw the reins to her father and said, “I need a better horse.”
Forseth’s take is different now.
“What I needed was a good spanking,” she said with a chuckle.
That youthful moment, though, seemed to foretell a career spent trying to raise better horses.
“I was just a horse-crazy girl who grew up to be an old, crazy horsewoman,” Forseth said.
She grew up in Aberdeen, but her grandparents had a farm, and she kept her horse there. As she grew into an adult, though, things changed. Her father died, the farm and the horses were sold and she went to college and got married.
Forseth studied business at the University of South Dakota. She said she wanted to become a veterinarian, but at that time, vet schools didn’t accept women. She was told that most women got married and abandoned their careers.
During and after school, Forseth missed working with horses. When her first child was born, she asked her husband how a child could grow up without a horse.
“He thought, ‘Very easily,’ ” she said.
Finally, when her daughter was 7 or 8 years old, Forseth convinced her husband to buy their daughter an Arabian. Forseth always liked Arabians, so she bought another one for herself.
Her husband later confessed to her his plan was to let her buy a horse so she would be so engrossed with her own hobby that she wouldn’t notice when he was out playing golf or tennis. Forseth admits the plan worked.
Pretty soon, another horse showed up. Forseth sold one of three, hoping to earn enough money for another Arabian.
At that point, “My husband said, ‘You’ve got to get in this or get out of it,’ ” Forseth said.