by Peter Winants
Foxhunting is in Melvin Poe's blood. As a child, he hunted with hounds owned by his grandfather and father in Rappahannock County, Virginia, and he became the professional huntsman for the Old Dominion Hounds for 16 seasons and the Orange County Hunt for 27 years. He is now, at age 82, in his eleventh year as huntsman for the Bath County Hounds.
In 1979, Melvin was featured in the film documentary "Thoughts on Hunting. "Author Peter Winants, a lifelong foxhunter, has been the field master at Bath County since the founding of the hunt in 1992. His book ably captures the essence of one of the most legendary and colorful characters in American foxhunting. In addition to Melvin's upbringing, chapters deal with breeding and training foxhounds, his techniques in finding and hunting foxes and the strategies that have led to immense success through the years at hound shows. The final chapter, "Thanks, Melvin," has testimonials from a number of prominent foxhunters who have enjoyed sport with Melvin, including Benjamin H. Hardaway III, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and Senator John W. Warner.Foxhunting With Melvin Poe is must reading for foxhunters and anyone who enjoys the countryside and nature.
Peter Winants is former editor and publisher of The Chronicle of the Horse and is the director emeritus of the National Sporting Library in Middleburg, Virginia. He is also the author of Steeplechasing: The Complete History of the Sport in North America, Jay Trump: A Steeplechasing Saga and Flatterer: The Story of a Steeplechasing Champion. He lives in Middleburg, Virginia.
|"Used generously throughout the book is a splendid collection of color and black-and-white photograpghs that breath even more life into Winants's prose and draw the reader into the enchanting world of Melvin Poe and Virginia foxhunting. While not a biography per se, Winants's work does relate important events and elements in Poe's life in order to explore and explain his foxhunting philossophy and the qualities that make him such a successful huntsman. "
|The National Sporting Library Newsletter
|"Foxhunting with Melvin Poe is lavishly illustrated with 8 color photographs and over fifty black-and-white photos. All this makes Foxhunting with Melvin Poe a great read; an experience second only, perhaps, to foxhunting with Melvin Poe."
|New England Horse Talk