A guidebook says that Ely is...
A guidebook says that Ely is the world's capitol for a once almost extinct horse, the American Bashkir Curly. The Crow and Sioux both had Curly horses. A Native American depicted Curly horses in drawings he made at the 1876 battle of Little Bighorn. The hair is generally soft and is hypoallergenic. Most people allergic to horses are not allergic to the Curly. The curly hair has been tested and has been found to resemble mohair. It is the only kind of its species that can have its coat used like lamb's wool. The hair can be spun into yarn.
For lots of photos, history and more information than you will ever need to know (unless, of course you plan to purchase a Curly), look at Bunny's Curly Horse Site.
I am familiar with this horse. There is a group of them that participate in the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade every year. Also, a friend of mine owned two of them, a stallion and a mare. The stallion had the sweetest disposition I have ever seen in a stallion--you could go in the stall and climb around all over him and he'd just be affectionate. BTW, they only have that curly hair when their winter coat is in--it sheds in the summer. A phone number for Curly Horses in Ely is 775-289-4999. This is a photo from Bunny's Curly Horse website. There are links to curlies all around the country. Really a great website if you're into horses. P.S. You have to click on the photo to see the curls :-)