Agricultural History Series

 Missouri State University

 1904 St. Louis Worlds Fair

Shorthorn Show

The Shorthorn breed of cattle was the most popular breed in 1904.  They were known for their outstanding milking ability.  People from the Pacific Northwest to Ohio brought their cattle to compete in this record breaking Shorthorn competition at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition.  The Shorthorn classes were said to have been some of the better exhibitions of the beef cattle shows, especially in the female classes.


Champion Aged Bull: Choice Goods owned by Tebo Land & Cattle Co.; Clinton, MO

Former Senator W. A. Harris, a representative of the American Shorthorn Breeders’ Association, was the official judge of each of the Shorthorn classes.  He received assistance from I. M. Forbes who was unofficially helping him judge the classes.  Seven contestants in each class were awarded ribbons, the top five receiving money awards.  Mr. Harris made arrangements for special prize money to be allotted.

There were 12 classes of Shorthorns at the fair.  In the aged bull category, the roan Choice Goods defeated Whitehall Sultan.  This was interesting because Mr. Forbes had actually preferred Whitehall Sultan.  However, he did not convince W. A. Harris to place the famous white bull first.  Both bulls were extremely well known at that time and there was much interest in the two competing in the same class.

Shorthorn Bull Show

Whitehall Marshall, 1st Senior Yearling Bull

The junior yearling’s class was the heaviest debated because of the outstanding top two bulls.  The winner, Missie’s Diamond, defeated Hampton’s Model after a time of deliberation.

Judging was delayed by one day because a cow named Ruberta had a calf on the day of the show.  It was later decided to withhold her from the show.  Ruberta had been bred to the champion bull, Choice Goods, and had given birth to a white calf that would, of course, have high expectations. 


Ruberta with her calf

The Shorthorn show was said to have peaked at the two-year old and yearling female classes.  Men were said to have “looked and marveled” at these Shorthorns. 

 Shorthorn winners included:

Aylesbury Duke 159763 won the American Shorthorn Special for owner J. F. Stodder, Burden, KS

References: The Breeders Gazette, September 1904, World's Fair Bulletin, November 1904

Photos from Irwin Collection and Breeders Gazette.

This page was designed by Jim E. Phillips and is maintained by Lyndon Irwin

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