The Ranch History
In 1967, W.L. Miller, his wife Arlys and family moved from Cedar Falls, Iowa to continue their lives nestled between the hills of Northeast Iowa. Spring Valley Ranch, named for the many springs on the property, became home to some well known horses, numerous cattle and has served as a place for people to grow up and grow old.
W.L. used the dining room as his desk, making deals over the phone and receiving information from other horsemen for available stock to buy, sell and trade. If anyone had ever the opportunity to sit and visit about horses, W.L. gave them a great education about pedigrees and progeny. W.L.'s natural abilities with horses began as a child and grew with him as he moved from Iowa to Texas when he served in the Navy.
He went on leave's from base and purchased registered quarter horses and what would eventually be the beginning of bringing registered paint horses to the state of Iowa. Horses that W.L. owned and or raised include the following: Painted Robin and some of his progeny, Mark IV, Baldy Raider, Little Joe Bailey, Johnny Que, Johnny Joe Spade and Levis White Limo just to name a few. W.L. served as the 9th APHA president and made his mark on the industry with his judging, auctioneering, breeding program, and a go-to for pedigree knowledge. W.L. and Arlys also founded the American Paint Pony Registry in 1975, which is still in operation today.
Spring Valley Ranch is now home to W.L. and Arlys' youngest son, Jim and his wife Marilyn; their daughter, Cassie and her husband, Matt and their daughter Audrey.
On October 5th, 2012 W.L. was inducted into APHA's inaugural Hall of Fame, as well as the very important stud, the infamous Painted Robin. The Paint Horse Association celebrated it's 5oth anniversary. Fifty Years: A Golden Beginning was written by Sam Ed Spence & Duke Neff to remember and chronicle the past 50 years of people and horses making their impact on the Paint Horse industry. W.L. was featured in chapter 16 of this book and is mentioned numerous other places throughout the book. If you want to get your hands on some good, historical reading about the American Paint Horse, this is the book to have!
A Lifetime Achievement
This is the award the family received on October 5th, 2012 in honor of W.L. Miller as he was inducted into the inaugural American Paint Horse Association Hall of Fame. He was one of 49 other people and horses at this event.
On October 4th, 2012 Jim and Cassie went to the opening ceremony for the APHA convention. This is them standing in front of the larger than life sized Legacy of Color statue. Carrie & Addie Miller attended the event that evening as well. During the evening the authors of A Golden Beginning were present for book signing, unveiling of the commemorative print, food and festivities among members celebrating the past 50 years of the American Paint Horse Association.
If you enjoy reading and pictures (who doesn't?!) grab your hands on a copy of this book. You will get the details of how APHA came to be and includes great chapters on the people and horses that developed the industry. W.L. Miller and Spring Valley Ranch are found in Chapter 16 of the book. Don't let an opportunity slip by without getting your hands on some really great reading and history!
New At the Ranch...
Spring Valley Ranch took it upon themselves to make a significant contribution to Iowa Cattlemen's Association by participating in the brand wall. Matt & Cassie Winters attending the Iowa Cattlemen's Association's Cattlemen's convention December 8th & 9th, 2015 where they and several others were recognized for this.