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REAL HORSEPOWER

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‘I just wanted to see if I could do it,’ owner says

By Cindy Simpson

Curtis Scarbrough loves his horses.

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Recently, he decided that, together, they could step back in time.

This week, on a sunny spring day, he walked behind them, holding steady a plow as it cut into the rich brown earth of a garden on Ruritan Road.  

The garden promises to yield the usual country bounty of corn, okra, tomatoes, onions and beans.

“I just wanted to see if I could do it,” Scarbrough said. “That is all we had when I was coming along. We didn’t have tractors. It was either a horse or a mule.”

He had his two Tennessee walking horses, better known for their smooth gait as saddle horses, trained to pull a buggy in Kentucky.

A couple of years ago, he decided to see if he could transfer those harness skills and hooked them up to the hand plow.

He plows his own garden, but he doesn’t stop there.

He also plows those of two more family members, including the Ruritan Road plot grown by his cousin’s widow, Pauline Scarbrough.

The plow is a family heirloom.

“My daddy was a molder at the old Harriman Plow Shop,” Scarbrough said.

“He made these plows, and they left Harriman and went to Chattanooga and tore the old plow shop down,” he said. “It is probably older than me.”