Morgans, Arabians, Quarter Horses, Thoroughbreds, etc. are all common equine breeds known throughout the United States. However, “The Horse America Made” – the American Saddlebred- is not so well known especially west of the Mississippi. During the American Revolution a comfortable riding horse with intelligence, easy trainability, and good stamina was needed. Thus the breeding began which culminated in the American Saddlebred, also know as the Kentucky Saddler, when it was further refined in Kentucky into a taller, better looking horse as more thoroughbred lines were added. Original ancestors of the American Saddlebred are the Narragansett Pacer, Canadian Pacer, Morgan and Thoroughbred. The breed was first documented as the American Horse in 1776 when an American diplomat wrote a letter to the Continental Congress asking for the horse to be sent to France as a present for Marie Antoinette.
The “Saddle horse” became very popular during the American Civil War as it was commonly used by the military due to its bravery and endurance. The American Saddlebred was known to hold up much better than other breeds. Officers such as General Robt. E. Lee (Traveller), General U.S. Grant (Cincinnati), General Sherman (Lexington), and General Jackson (Little Sorrell) preferred the breed for its beauty as well as the aptitudes mentioned above.
Since the mid 1800’s the Saddlebred has become a prominent part of the horse show industry. They are often called “the peacock of the show world” due to their beauty and unequaled performance style. As motion pictures arrived on the scene, Saddlebreds and half Saddlebreds became a prominent feature in movies and later TV. Gone With the Wind, Giant, My Friend Flicka, National Velvet, Mr. Ed, Black Beauty are examples of movies and TV shows in which Saddlebreds were used. Actors such as Clark Gable, Will Rogers, Joe Louis (boxer), Tom Mix, Roy Rogers, Buffalo Bill Cody, Elizabeth Taylor, William Shatner, and Carson Kressley also preferred this breed. Roy Rogers’ horse, Trigger, was purchased from Bing Crosby’s Saddlebred farm.
Saddlebreds come in all colors (including spotted) and are used in all show disciplines including competitive trail riding, endurance riding, dressage, driving, eventing , jumping, fox hunting, cutting and roping. They also make wonderful family horses as a backyard horse or for pleasure riding.
More can be learned of the American Saddlebred by visiting www.asha.com or www.coloradosaddlebred.com.
See and experience the beautiful American Saddlebred by attending an OPEN HOUSE being held at Spring Acres Farm, 11990 Piney Lake Rd., Parker, CO. 80138 on August 12, 2018, from 1:00 to 4:00. We will be having pony rides and photo ops with Picasso the horse, who appeared in the Saige paints the Sky movie and a demonstration starting at 2:00. Please RSVP at (303) 766-4909 or firstname.lastname@example.org with number attending.