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.