North American Horses Poster
  Imported Horses
    Barb / Spanish Barb
    Spanish Jennet
    Hobbie Horse
    Destrier / Shire
    Norwegian Fjord
  Feral & Indian Horses
  American Breeds


Imported Horses
    The first horses on the American mainland since the end of the Ice Age arrived with the Spanish Conquistadors. Hernán Cortés brought 16 horses of Andalusian, Barb, and Arabian ancestry with him to Mexico in 1519. Others followed, such as Francisco Vásquez de Coronado, who brought 250 horses of similar breeding to America in 1540. More horses followed with each new arrival of Conquistadors or settlers. Many of these breeds became the foundation stock of American breeds.
Spanish Norman Horse Spanish-Norman
 This large strong horse carried medieval knights into battle.  It was hardy, courageous, powerful, and quick to respond to the rider's commands. The Spanish brought them to the New Worlds, where these superb warhorses were used by the Conquistadors.
Andalusian Horse Andalusian
   One of the oldest and purest breeds.  The introduction of firearms required a lighter, more agile cavalry horse, so the Spanish began importing these versatile horses.  They were especially well-suited for herding cattle.   
Spanish Jennet Horse Spanish Jennet
   This distinctively spotted horse is shown in prehistoric cave paintings.  In the Middle Ages, the Spanish Jennet Horse (Pinto Paso or Paso Tiger Horse) reflected his lofty Spanish heritage in his crisp, smooth gait, his proud and elegant carriage, and in his brilliant colors and flashy patterns. He was the mount of choice of all European nobility.
Spanish Barb Horse Spanish Barb
   Also called the Spanish colonial horse has an ancient origin. He is the result of crossing the African Barb, or Berber horse with the resident horse of the Iberian Peninsula after the Moors invaded Spain in 711 AD.  The Spanish brought them to the new world for their soldiers and work their ranches.
Thoroughbred Horse Thoroughbred
   This superior breed of racehorses was developed around 1700 in England from imported Arabian stallions and English mares. .Thoroughbred racing in North America began with an "English style race" held at Annapolis, Maryland in 1745.
Breton Horse Breton
   The Breton is used for heavy draft and farm work. The breed dates back at least four thousand years. Some maintain it came from Asia and others believe it comes from smaller horses that were bred and improved by Celtic warriors on their conquest of what is now Great Britain.
Galloway Horse Galloway
   The Galloway was a small, compact horse that originally came from Scotland. They were gentle, easy to ride and never tired and were know for being good pacers. They were often used for racing. It is the ancestor of the American Saddlebred horse
Hackney Horse Hackney
   The Hackney is a dynamic, high-stepper with two branches -- the horse and the pony -- both bred specifically for their brilliant performance in harness. It was developed in Great Britain in the early 18th Century from the Darley Arabian through his son, Flying Childerns that foaled in 1715.
Hobbie Horse / Hobby Horse Hobbie Horse
   The Hobby was a popular riding horse In the Late Middle Ages. They were sometimes hobbled to control their gait, which is what may have given rise to the name.  They were used for border patrol, but were often used for recreational riding, which became known as a hobby.  They inspired the toy horse that carry their name.. 
Normandy Horse Normandy
    The horse of Normandy, France dates back over 800 years. They were big, powerful warhorses and were imported as draft horse. They provided bloodlines for many modern breeds, but the original Normandy horse is now extinct.
Percheron Horse Percheron
   The typical old-style Percheron (Percheron postier) was a big grey harness horse famous for his very useful ability to trot fast and long, while puling a heavy load. They were used in Candada to pull heavy sleds
Gelderland Horse Gelderland
   The Gelderland, also known as the Gelderlander, is a warm blood horse which originated in the sandy, mid-eastern province of the same name in the Netherlands.
Friesian Horse Friesian
   The Friesian Horse originated in Friesland, one of twelve provinces of the the Netherlands. It dates back to 500 BC. In 1625 the Dutch brought them to New Amsterdam, now New York City. It was a good all-purpose horse that could be used for riding and draft work.
Destrier Horse / Shire Destrier / Shire
    Destrier is an historical term for a knight’s war horse. When not fighting they were used to carry war gear. William Penn brought them into his Pennsylvania colony in the early 1700s for use as draft horses. The modern day Shire descends from it.
Holstein Horse Holstein
    The Holstein horse / Holsteiner is the result product of systematic breeding dating back to the thirteenth century. It comes from the Schleswig-Holstein province of Germany. It was valued by German farmers for its strength, steadiness and reliability.

Arabian Horse

Arabians are one of the oldest horse breeds in the world. They originated in the Middle East and spread westward across North Africa.  The first purebred  was imported into England in 1683. A stallion was brought to Virginia in 1725.  It sired over 300 foals.
Norwegian Fjord Horse Norwegian Fjord
   Swedes and Finns brought the fjord horse. Its ancestors date back to the Vikings. They are light and fast enough to be a good riding and driving horse, but yet strong enough for heavy work, such as plowing the fields or pulling timber.
Swedish Horse Swedish
    In 1638 the New Sweden Company created the first permanent settlement of Delaware. It brought with it a small compact, agile draft horse ideally suited to moving heavy loads in confined spaces.
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