The Horseman, is the story of the Ballou family's brave struggle to fulfill a dream. The Ballous were the finest horsemen in the South, a courageous Tennessee family famous for the training and breeding of glorious thoroughbreds. When the Civil War devastated their home and their lives, they headed west into the heart of Indian territory. As horsemen, they triumphed. As a family, they endured. But as pioneers in a new land, they faced unimaginable hardship, danger, and ruthless enemies....
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Haunted by the blood and bitterness of the Civil War, Houston Ballou escaped from Tennessee on the proud stallion High Fire, followed by his brother, Ruff; his sister, Dixie; and the last four mares from the Ballou farm, one of them heavy with foal. Threatened with extreme danger from either army, they head west to start a new life. Adding to their peril are deserters that stalk the roads. These men would kill for a few coins, more so for valuable horseflesh.
In the wake of disaster, the surviving members of the Ballou family sought a new beginning on the Texas Frontier. A minister and his family become their traveling companions. Tragedy strikes when the minister and his young daughter are attacked by rattlesnakes and severely bitten. Their lives depend on the only medical attention available, that of a Comanche medicine man. And it is up to Ruff to persuade the reluctant Comanches to give them aid.
Ruff Ballou and his sister Dixie journeyed west with trouble at their heels. But luck is on their side in Rum River, New Mexico, where they race one of their champion thoroughbreds to victory. A rich man's greed pits their good fortune against Ruff's life and they must take up a money-making challenge to capture Blue Bullet, the legendary stallion that no man has yet tamed. But their worst enemy is time. A bounty has been placed on Blue Bullet, dead or alive, and savage killers are out to collect that reward.
On their way to Colorado, Ruff and Dixie Ballou drive their horses through New Mexico. Their intention to quietly drive the horses on through goes well until they find themselves inadvertently involved in a shootout with four outlaws who robbed the banks of a small town in New Mexico. An edgy sheriff and angry townspeople get the Ballou's involved in a situation they would be more happy to do without. Even more so when they are arrested by the sheriff as robbery suspects.