Mark Milster’s talent has taken him to England, Wales, Scotland, Japan, Brazil and Canada for competitions or clinics.
GOLDSBY — Horseshoes have shaped Mark Milster’s life.
On a recent morning, Milster of Goldsby reached to a shop shelf and with thick, grubby hands pulled from it a 3/8-by- 3/4-inch steel bar.
Over the next few minutes, the 48-year-old farrier used tongs to plunge the bar into the chunks of coke in the brick forge that heats “right close to 3,000 degrees.”
The third-generation farrier quickly withdrew the glowing bar and moved to an anvil. With Popeye forearms and swinging a self-made hammer, Milster forged the rod into a horseshoe shape.
The metal on metal clank continued and carried right out the shop door as Milster struck the pointed-end pritchel to create six nail holes.
Repeating the process, it didn’t take long before he had a finished pair of shoes for a horse’s front hooves.
Similarly, horseshoeing has shaped the life of this recent inductee into the International Horseshoeing Hall of Fame, located in the Kentucky Derby Museum at Churchill Downs in Louisville.
But instead of hammers and other trade tools, it’s people, places and faith that have forged Milster‘s life.