Loretta Pierson chose to adopt the Cayuse pony to honor Albany and the stories of pioneers and indigenous people who lived here. This pretty pony was named Calapooia after the Calapooia River that flows near downtown Albany. The word Calapooia comes from the Kalapuya Indians who lived along the river throughout the Willamette Valley. The Cayuse ponies were actually native to areas of Eastern Oregon. They were small, sturdy, and spirited horses known to be hardworking and dependable. Feather adornment, osprey, and salmon decorate this middle row jumper that proudly represents Native Americans of our region. His blue bedroll is typical of the blankets that were traded with the Indians. A Celtic knot with an amethyst center located on the headband of the bridle represents the Pierson family’s heritage. Albany’s rich history is represented by pictures of brothers Walter and Thomas Monteith on canteens hanging from Calapooia’s saddle. In 1847, the Monteiths built their home on land located at the confluence of the Calapooia and Willamette Rivers. It is said they bought the land from an earlier settler “for $400 and a Cayuse pony”. The Monteith House, located just one block south of the Carousel, was the first frame house built in Albany and today is a carefully restored memorial to our pioneer ancestors and the spirit that brought them to Oregon.
Calapooia, the Cayuse Indian Pony: sponsored by Loretta Pierson