Jones Memorabilia Collection Arrives at Hall of Fame

The National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., has received a large collection of memorabilia from the estate of trainer H.A. "Jimmy" Jones.

Jones and his father, Ben A. Jones, trained for Calumet Farm and both are members of the Hall of Fame. Between them, they trained eight Kentucky Derby winners including Triple Crown winner Whirlaway and Citation. Both also were leading money-winning trainers for nine years between 1941 and 1961.

A wide variety of materials describe the entire careers of both, including the Jones Stock Farm of the 1920s and the Calumet glory days. The Museum has acquired three sets of silks, six trophies (from the Stock Farm days), 15 blankets, numerous horseshoes, 77 programs, approximately 890 photographs, a voluminous amount of archival materials, and a few personal items owned by either Ben or Jimmy, including Ben's trademark Stetson hat and a set of Jimmy's binoculars.

"The completeness and depth of the collection are its main strengths," according to curators Kate Cravens and Lori Fisher. "We are able to match many of these artifacts together to tell a more complete and compelling story through our exhibitions. For example, we have acquired the blankets given to Citation and Bewitch after the 1951 Hollywood Gold Cup, when Citation became the world's first millionaire horse and Bewitch became the world's leading money-winning filly or mare. We also have the shoes worn by both champions in the race, as well as photographs of the race itself. It is a terrific story, particularly
since Bewitch was the first horse to beat Citation."

A few items from the new collection will be on display during this summer's Saratoga race meet in the Hall of Fame Heroes exhibit in the McBean Gallery. Other museums acquiring artifacts from the Jones estate include the Kentucky Derby Museum and the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.