Golden Firefly was a flashy chestnut mare with liberal white markings. She was a crowd favorite and a regular winner. In 1916, her trainer Sterling Nicoll rode and drove her to the RWGC in both the 5 Gaited and Fine Harness stakes at the World's Championship. It took two horses, Richlieu King, a two time Stallion stake winner and Lady Beautiful, a five time WGC in Fine Harness, to beat her.
And once her show ring days were over, this great mare went on to make even greater contributions to the American Saddlebred breed.
A check of her pedigree shows three of her grandparents tracing directly to Denmark FS. Her sire, Guided by Love, was another brightly marked horse. He also sired stallions Kentucky Moonshine, Green Valley Fox, Love Chief and My Own Love. His daughter Marjorie Beebe was 2nd dam of Judy O'Lee BHF. Princess Irene only produced one registered foal, but that turned out to be Golden Firefly. Other than that, little was known about Princess Irene, but that's going to change right now. She was bred by W. R. Allen of Smiths Grove, Kentucky and registered by Scott Isbell of Bowling Green, Kentucky. The towns were just down the road from each other. And it just so happens that a home in Bowling Green Kentucky contained a painting of a saddlebred mare and a copy of the application to register her. The sorrel mare with stripe and left front leg, white to the elbow, was none other than Princess Irene. Her owner, which could have been Scott Isbell, or later the Kelley Brothers, liked this mare enough to have a portrait painted. The long time homeowner had no connection with Princess Irene, and it's unknown what the mare's connection was with previous owners of the home. It is just good fortune that her paperwork stayed with her painting, and with her very distinctive markings, there is no doubt of her identity.
a portrait of Princess Irene
GOLDEN FIREFLY . M, SADDLEBRED, 1911
Golden Firefly BHF
Guided By Love
King Lee Rose
Le Grand Jr
Now for a look at some of Golden Firefly's offspring and what they've produced.
Rex Firefly, f. 1921, sired by Rex Peavine.
Rex Firefly sired:
King Coe who sired Penny Co Ed BHF, A Sheer Delight BHF, Cora Sutton
Sensation Rex who sired Vanity's Sensation, Golden Sensation, Mighty Sensation, Grassview Sensation and Wonderland Sensation.
A Sheer Delight BHF produced Longview Supreme
Penny Co Ed produced Penny Stonewall
Cora Sutton produced WGC Cora's Time
Flashing Peavine BHF, f. 1923. sired by Rex Peavine
Flashing Peavine produced American Jane and Flashing American.
Princess Firefly, f. 1928, sired by Bourbon King
Princess Firefly produced Dixiana's Spring Cheer and Firefly Genius.
Dixiana's Spring Cheer
Sensation Firefly, f. 1030, sired by Jean Val Jean
Sensation Firefly produced Genius' Firefly and Courageous Flash.
Sparkling Firefly, f. 1932, sired by Rex Firefly, his own half brother.
Sparkling Firefly sired Sparkling Waters.
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More descendants of Golden Firefly BHF
the list goes on and on
American Jane out of Flashing Peavine
Brass Tacks out of Flashing Peavine
Flashing American out of Flashing Peavine
Evening Cloud's 3rd dam was Flashing Peavine
Dark Tempest by King Coe
Easter Glamour by King Coe
Ernestine Supreme out of American Sunset BHF, 2nd dam Courageous Flash
Hide a way's Firefly Supreme out of Dixiana's Spring Cheer
Mr. Blythewood by King Coe
CH My Show Boat
Sparkling Show Case
The New Moon