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Nancy Wiebe

Page history last edited by PBworks 17 years, 2 months ago

Nancy Clapp Wiebe Interview for Rendezvous Pointe Newsletter (Pinedale, WY Senior Center), June, 2007




Nancy Clapp Wiebe was born in FL on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 24, 1932. In 1941 they moved to NY where her dad was an engineer in defense work. Nancy proudly said, “He came up with the idea to make PT boats out of mahogany plywood. My grandfather was a dentist and helped invent coloring of false teeth.” She attended a private school in Troy, NY, because of a program that allowed local girls to go as day students. Nancy said, “The school had a great riding program. It was English riding and I began showing horses in competition.” Later she lived above a horse stable. She said, “The horse owners wanted someone to show their animals, so I rode them - in the polo field, in the ring, in horse shows including Madison Square Garden. I rode lots of different horses.” There were fox hunting jumps and open jumping. Nancy’s highest jump was 6’4”. A favorite horse was Peg’s Pride. He was the National Champ when Nancy rode him in 1951. She said, “One year I was in 37 Horse Shows. Jumping was exciting. I went all over the east. My favorite horse was Forward Passer. One time in the Garden he came in the in-gate and when he got to the out-gate he bucked until I fell off. That happened two times. Someone lent me another horse to finish the show. With only one week until the next show we trained him with a check bit. He even jumped with it. At the show he won 7 classes in a row! I was 16. Then the owner sold him for $30,000.”


Nancy earned a degree in Business Management but wanted to go into teaching. She subbed for 3 years so she could do shows and finish her education degree. Three years out of college Nancy married James B Wiebe, Jr. She said, “I went to help a family with horses and their dog chewed up my hunt cap. They called Jim to bring me a new one. That’s how we met. He was a saddler and made fancy bridles & training devices.” Nancy taught 2nd and 3rd grades in NJ for 10 years. Her children are James III who now lives in VA and has 2 girls, Bill who lives in HI and has 4 daughters, and Martha who has 2 girls and lives in CT.


Nancy became a single mom and in 1971 began coming to Wyoming with her 3 children every summer. They worked in the hay fields and “saved just enough money to get back to NJ. It was an adventure,” she said. She has worked for Melvin David, Carroll James, Warren Koch, George Westman, Grant Beck (on pack trips into the mountains), & Bob Beard. Besides haying, she helped Steve James train cutting horses. She added, “One thing I loved about coming here was riding & moving cows with the neighbor ranchers.” In 1978 she moved her kids, horse, 2 milk goats & a dog to Daniel. She rented (& later bought) a little cabin that had no indoor plumbing. She obtained a job as an aide in Kindergarten in Big Piney & then was a 2nd grade teacher there for 15 years. In 1993 Nancy moved to FL to care for her 94 year old mother. When her mother died at the age of 101, Nancy returned. Her home on Horse Creek Road includes 15 acres on the Green River and “has a great place to fish on a gravel bank.”


Nancy isn’t slowing down much. Two years ago she was the cook for Kim Bright’s hunting camp. Her 4 year old great-granddaughter comes to stay overnight once a week. She gives English riding clinics (Hunt Seat Equitation) to people from 6 to 60+ years old. Every fall she goes on a “Granny Hunt” for antelope with Mary Brodie and Mary’s son, Mark. She has held every office of the Daniel Community Club and helps them with the ‘Aniel Daniel Chili Cookoff , the Old Timer’s Picnic and other events. She also does enrichment activities at Big Piney Elementary. This busy lady is on the Rendezvous Point Board of Directors and keeps the flower beds looking beautiful in the summer. By Judi Myers

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