The Family Horse

Here’s something fun to bring us into the weekend.

How many jobs do you think this old plow horse did around the farm?

plow horse



From the landscape in the background, it looks like this was an isolated homestead. Perhaps friend was the most important.

boy and horse


My guess is that the woman and girl in the saddle are visiting relatives. The boy knows how good the mare is being.


  1. Not sure what to think of the lady in the saddle, prim and proper at the very least.

  2. On a small homestead that could only afford one horse, the poor animal would have been used for allsorts. Ploughing – Herding – Collecting supplies – The school run if it was to far to walk, to name a few. The boy and girl look happy, the lady looks like she’s eaten a sour lemon !! Lovely old pictures. Have a good weekend :)

  3. My father grew up on a farm with little money. His father had to take an ‘outside job’ to make ends meet. They were still using horses ’cause equipment (like a tractor) cost too much. Ahhh, the stories he would tell, both good and bad, about the horses that they had over the years. They were definitely more than just furniture!

  4. I wonder if it is the woman`s first time on a horse? The boy is finding the humour after helping her into the saddle and seeing her discomfort with the gentle mare. He loves that horse!

  5. Is that her hat hanging on her foot? The position of the boy`s hand looks suspicious…Do you suppose he hung it there? Ha ha ha……

  6. I see pictures like this, and all I want to do is to give the horse a good strapping massage, rub their legs with Absorbine linament and turn them out on good grass with a fly hood and fresh water. They always look so exhausted and I just want them to rest their weary bones!

    • Some horses were over-worked, but others were well-cared for. You had to nurture the animal, as you couldn’t survive without horse power. I used to own gorgeous hand-crocheted fly sheets that work horses wore back then. They had linament, too, and often stood the horses in a cold creek after work.

      • Those were my thoughts as well. My wife and mother both grew up in the country where a family’s livelihood depended greatly on the health and well being of their livestock … namely, the horses and mules. On many farms, and in many ways, they probably had it better than the ones tending to them.

  7. Looks like, to me, it’s ‘Picture Day’. I would presume that the horse was seen, in the eyes of the family, as much a part of the family as the daughter and son.