Horses in War

Horses In War

Learn about horses in war as part of the Hard Work & Horse Power exhibit at the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame & Museum.

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Throughout history, horses played a crucial role in providing support to armies in the field. 

The type of horse used depended on whether the horse was being ridden or driven, and whether they were being used for reconnaissance, cavalry charges, raiding, communication or supply.

Horse cavalry began to be phased out after World War I, though a few horse cavalry units were still used into World War II, especially as scouts. By the end of World War II, horses were seldom seen in battle, but were still used extensively for the transport of troops and supplies.

Today, formal battle-ready horse cavalry units have almost disappeared, though the United States Army Special Forces have used horses in battle in Afghanistan. Horses are still seen in use by organized armed fighters in other countries.

Many nations still maintain small units of mounted riders for patrol and reconnaissance, and military horse units are also used for ceremonial and educational purposes. Horses are also used for historical reenactment of battles, law enforcement and in equestrian competitions derived from the riding and training skills once used by military.


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