the ceremonial role of horses
Horses are unrivaled in their ability to add a natural regal beauty to official ceremonies and state occasions. The horses, carriage and livery of the president have added beauty and spectacle to state events, presidential Inaugural Parades and official ceremonies. Cowboys and Indians, the Rough Riders, and the Army cavalry and their horses have all participated in the parades. Horse drawn vehicles conveyed the president to and from the White House to the Capitol until Warren G. Harding’s Inaugural Parade in 1921.

The death of a president calls for a formal ceremony with symbolism suited to the dignity of the occasion. Nineteenth century state funerals were pageants with elaborate funeral cars and long processions. In the twentieth century, the president’s flag-draped casket has been carried on an artillery caisson drawn by six matched horses. Following the caisson is a riderless horse, the president’s flag, the family and an assemblage of national and world leaders. The most famous of the caparisoned horses was “Black Jack” of the Old Guard Caisson Platoon of the Military District of Washington who added dignity and solemnity to the state funerals of Herbert Hoover, John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson.


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exhibit navigation
white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits white house horses - intro V - carriages of the presidents VI - presidents on horseback VII - working horses at the white house VIII - the ceremonial role of horses II - the executive stables III - the theodore roosevelt family IV - presidents at the races IX - equestrian sports and leisure pursuits