excerpted from the May 1992 Quarter Racing Journal
Of all the modem Quarter
Horse sires ever to throw a colt and propagate a really top Quarter Horse
family, observers find in Joe Reed a shining example of a sire whose
progeny could get out and do things' Joe Reed is the producer of some
truly great sons and daughters, and establishes his prepotency through the sons and daughters of
Joe Reed II. Though he raced in the day
when quarter-mile sprinting was at its
lowest ebb and quarter-mile horses at their
all-time lowest value, he has brought upon
himself the profound admiration of Quarter Horse breeders everywhere. He was a
sire which could be depended upon to bring good foals out of ordinary
Joe Reed was by the Thoroughbred Joe Blair out of Delia Moore by Old D.J. Joe Blair was the horse that was beaten by Pan Zareta in the record-smashing race at Juarez in 1916 going five-eighths of a mile, Although beaten in the race, the next year Joe Blair, carrying 115 pounds, set a world's record for 3 /z furlongs. Old Dl was by Old Dedier out of a mare by the Bleakmore Stud (TB), which was raised by the Holloway brothers in Kentucky. One of the fastest horses of his day. Old D.J, achieved even greater fame as the sire of outstanding broodmares, and of these good ones, Delia Moore was the best.
When Joe Reed was foaled in 1920. Delia Moore was racing, so the colt was immediately taken off her and raised on a bottle. As a two-year-old, it became evident that he could run, but still Joe Reed didn't have much chance to become very great as a race horse. Most all of the important races those days were being run at five-eighths of a mile, and the horse that couldn't do it had to be run in the brush. Five-eighths or better was too much for Joe Reed; he couldn't even do a half-mile and get anywhere. But when it came to the quarter, he was just like his mother and dad — :22 flat.
Joe Reed was raced successfully for a couple of years, but then he quit running. His owner, J. W. House of Cameron, Texas, then began to breed him, most notably to two of his best mares. Little Red Nell and Nellene. From Little Red Nell he raised Red Joe of Arizona, and from Nellene he got Joe Reed IT.
House said, "l never saw a sorry horse by Joe Reed, no matter how sorry the mare. And all of his get gets good ones, and the mares by Joe Reed bring top colts from other horses. If you knew Old Joe you could always pick out the ones that carry his blood."
Joe Reed died of heart failure May 19, 1947, after successfully covering a mare at Elk City, Oklahoma, where, since 1938 he had lived at the home of Dr. and Mrs. Slankard. They had purchased him from House. Like Oklahoma Star, he, too, was accorded one of the first 20 numbers in the AQHA Stud Book, he was number 3.
THE QUARTER RACING JOURNAL