LIVE THE LEGACY
In 1970, Herb Kohler and Mark Staehnke attended a sale in Cox’s Creek, Kentucky. A 13-year-old Stallion, named Vigilmarch, was led to the ring where the auctioneer’s attempts to get an opening bid worthy of this horse were futile. Eventually, meager bids started coming in until a new voice was heard. Herb had entered the race. When Mark asked “Do you have any idea what you’re doing? Do you know what owning a stallion like that means?” Mr. Kohler responded, “No, but I love that horse”. Little did he realize at the time that the future of Kohler Stables would be shaped for years to come with the legacy of this legendary sire.
With Vigilmarch as the cornerstone of the Kohler breeding program and the guidance of talented trainers Mark Staehnke, J.T. Brown, Owen Haley, and Thomas L. Caisse the HVK prefix quickly became a presence in the Morgan industry. Vigilmarch produced some of the most gifted and brilliant show horses to ever enter the ring, consistently performing time after time. As foundation stock, his sons and daughters are legendary.
VAL’S TERRY Eight-time World Champion Gelding, Multi-World Champion Ladies Park Harness and Amateur Park Saddle
HVK FIELDMARCH World Champion 3 Year Old Park Harness, Reserve World Champion 3 Year Old Stallion, Reserve World Champion 3 Year Old Park Saddle
In 1976, Tom Caisse received an invitation which would change his career and have a profound impact on the entire Morgan industry. The combination of Herb Kohler’s intuition and eye for quality with Tom’s master horsemanship created the legacy of Kohler Stables that endures today.
Tom Caisse with Noble Flaire
In 1984, a weanling colt named Noble Flaire was acquired from Bob and Judy Whitney, the second and only other stallion ever purchased by Herb Kohler. By the time he was retired from the show ring in 1991, Noble Flaire had earned an unprecedented four Park Harness World Championships and two Stallion In-Hand World Championships.
While Noble Flaire broke new ground with his exciting show career, his enormous impact on the Morgan Horse industry continued well beyond the ring with record-setting offspring such as HVK Bell Flaire, HVK Courageous Flaire and HVK Vibrance, to name just a few.
HVK COURAGEOUS FLAIRE World Champion 4 Year Old Park Harness, three-time World Champion Amateur Park Harness
With the retirement of Tom Caisse in 2013 as Manager/Trainer, he continued mentoring his successor, Shirley O’Gorman until his passing in 2018. Her knowledge, horsemanship, and passion for the Morgan Horse are evident as she continues to Live the Legacy here at Kohler Stables.