President Grover Cleveland and his wife Frances “Frank” Cleveland enjoyed animals and had quite a zoo during their non-consecutive terms in the White House. The pair had dogs, exotic fish, chickens, and even ponies.
The two brown ponies really belonged to Frances Cleveland and she was often seen driving through Washington with the pair hitched to her phaeton. These ponies resided in the White House stables when not working, sharing their space with Shawl neck game birds and chickens.
In 1904, a letter to a Mr. Robinson from Frances Cleveland seems to indicate that she sold off her cart and her ponies. No further documentation could be found to validate the sale (or lack thereof). At this point in time, the Clevelands were in retirement after the Presidency, although Grover Cleveland remained active, taking on the role of trustee at Princeton University as well as occasionally consulting with then-President Theodore Roosevelt. It is worth noting that in 1904 the Cleveland’s daughter Ruth died of diphtheria at age 12, which could have prompted Frances to sell her cart and ponies if they contained painful memories.
According to Sandra L. Quinn and Sanford Kanter in America’s Royalty: All the Presidents’ Children, Ruth Cleveland’s sad obituary ran in the New York Times and listed her toys – among them were a pony and cart.
Whether this was a different pony than her mother’s, it is difficult to say. One can be certain however that all these ponies were well-loved while with the Cleveland family.