Strange Scene – Funeral of a Horse

STRANGE SCENE – FUNERAL OF A HORSE (Subject of illustration) One of the most singular funerals took place a few days ago at Maryland. A wealthy merchant at his death, in addition to many munificent bequests and legacies, left a certain sum for the maintenance of his favourite horse – a fine old hunter – […]

War Horses Week: Torpedoed in Transit

The steamer appeared to be close to us and looked colossal. I saw the captain walking on his bridge… I saw the crew cleaning the deck forward, and I saw, with surprise and a slight shudder, long rows of wooden partitions right along all the decks, from which gleamed the shining black and brown backs […]

Whole Heap of Little Horse Links

What the what? No, this is not breaking news, but something I discovered today. Lambourn will have the UK’s first “horse monorail” courtesy of Turkish industrialist and racehorse owner, Mehmet Kurt. As far as I can tell it’s a horsewalker from Tron (have a look at the photo here); apparently the “Kurtsystem” will be great […]

Working Horse Welfare, Nineteenth-Century Style

While I’m housebound working on book two, Mum is filling in as our roving reporter on horse history. Here’s a “Dandy Cart”, snapped at the National Railway Museum in York. Working-horse history is intertwined with the history of the railways, so it’s no surprise to see a horse or two in this museum. According to […]

Whole Heap of Little Horse Links

Composer Eve Harrison teamed up with Scottish schoolchildren to write a musical about the horse meat scandal, called The Unspeakable. If I weren’t on the move just now I would dig out a 17th century story in which Scottish children chased and stoned a man known to eat horse meat. (BBC) The FAO reports that […]

From the Sea to the Somme

Thank you to Andy Smerdon for getting in touch with me about his project to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of hostilities in 1914. Andy’s an amateur historian with a special interest in the use of equines – hosses and mules – in World War One. With his Tennessee Walking Horse Mack and […]

The Black Market In Black Beauties: A Piece For Spiegel Online About The Horse Meat Crisis

How bureacracy has failed both horses and consumers, and how a long-held quest to provide cheap red meat for the working man ended in fraud. I need to add the credit for the Saint-Hilaire translation, which will appear here when I have time! Meanwhile, here’s something on the history of hippophagy, something on bute, and […]