History and Facts

History and Facts

The American Quarter Horse is America’s Original Horsepower.

American Quarter Horse racehorses

History of the Quarter Horse

The origins of the Quarter Horse can be traced to Colonial America, when our forefathers required ahorse sturdy enough to work all week, yet be fleet-of-foot for sprint races. The term “Quarter” refers to the distance, a quarter of a mile, most commonly run in Colonial racing, often on the main streets of small villages.

History found the Quarter Horse to be the right mount for cowboys and cattle drives, settling the American West. Today, you’ll find Quarter Horses excelling in rodeo and nearly every equine performance event.


History of AQHA

Since 1940, the American Quarter Horse Association has been paving a way for passionate horseman and horsewomen to come together in the name of the American Quarter horse for the breed’s preservation, celebration, and advancement.


Kim Letterman and Marshians Moon

running horse herd

AQHA Facts

  • Established March 1940 – Fort Worth
  • AQHA International Headquarters – Amarillo
  • Over 6 million registered horses
  • Over 230,000 members
  • Over 17,000 youth members


Our Mission

To record and preserve the pedigree of the American Quarter Horse, while maintaining its welfare and integrity and promoting lifelong enjoyment of the breed.

Our Vision

To be the global champion for the American Quarter Horse and the unmatched equine industry leader.


man and daughter on horses

Explore Our History