The mighty working horse teams that carried a young Australia from convict beginnings to prosperity are the centrepiece of a new documentary from West Wyalong Movies.
Titled Ten Horse Team, the documentary traces the era of working horses from the earliest days through to their demise upon the shift to mechanisation on farms.
The 57-minute DVD was produced by KEA Video Productions, Orange, and written by Albury journalist Kim Woods.
West Wyalong Movies principal Ross Harmer sourced rare historical footage from the Australian Film and Sound Archives and private collections.
Black and white still images of horse breeders, working horses, farming and business activities associated with the heavy horse industry feature throughout the DVD.
Mr Harmer said it was important to capture the many stories of a bygone era before they were lost altogether.
‘‘Driving the 10-horse team was not only a skill in itself but also a test of endurance with plenty of sweat, heat, dust and flies,’’ he said.
Ariah Park resident Jim Davey and his sister Phyllis Davey recall their connection with horses, from the earliest memories of sulky rides to school, through to the day the family’s working horse team was replaced by a new tractor.
Ten Horse Team features horse-breaker Bill Brown, who rode his first buckjumper at the tender age of 10 and went on to break in several thousand horses during his lifetime.
Mr Johnson has appeared at many working horse festivals and shows around the country with his teams, and contributes each year to the record breaking wool-bale wagon pull at the Barellan Good Old Days weekend.