About John M. Seabrook
“When I decided to live and work at Seabrook Farms after I graduated from Princeton, I had no idea that coaching would be such a big part of my life. It came about gradually, beginning with the first $25 carriage bought in 1939 so friends who couldn’t safely ride horses could come with me for picnic rides through the vegetable fields that surrounded my house. The eight-passenger buckboard that was my second carriage purchase meant that I could take more people on these drives, including my two young daughters and their friends.
Over the years I acquired other carriages to fill changing needs, but all of the carriages were driven by me. My carriages are mostly English and American sporting vehicles, not European-style servant driven vehicles, because my interest was in driving myself, on pleasure drives and to sporting events. They were not meant to be displayed as a “collection” or museum.
In the spring of 2001, when I decided to retire from driving, I did not want my carriages just collecting dust. I wanted to dispose of the carriages to insure their continued use by drivers, and an auction turned out to be the practical way to do it.
Half a Century of Coaching
An auction meant a catalogue. I wanted this catalogue to have very good photographs and to be accurate in every detail. That meant Tom Ryder had to do it. He, after all, had guided my coaching career and knew the origin, maker, and background of every vehicle.
While Tom was checking the old vehicle records in my office, we began to reminisce about some great coaching events we had shared. Later he suggested he would like to write up some of those events to show how the carriages were used. One thing led to another and Tom went back to his home in Yorkshire to write “Half a Century of Coaching,” which The Carriage Association of America has published.
In the end it turned out to be a lot more than just a catalogue of carriages. In reading it, I hope you get some idea of the fun I have had with each of them over a long period of years.”
The auction was held on April 27, 2002. At this time the Seabrook Coaching Stable was completely dispersed.
This site has been archived by The Carriage Association of America in order to provide a record of this event, and to present the extensive documentation of the Seabrook carriages herein as a resource to visitors to our site.
King Carol state harness and postilion livery.
Four-in-hand set of “Nimrod” harness, brass
Four-in-hand set of “Nimrod” harness, chrome
Four-in-hand set of “Tantivy” harness, brass
Four-in-hand set of park drag harness
Four-in-hand set of exercise harness (leather and chrome)
Pieces of state harness (King Carroll of Romania), silver
Pair set of russet harness
Cock-horse harness & saddle
Reins: five- and six-in-hand, and three-abreast
Miscellaneous collars (brown leather and black patent) and harness pieces.