Skip to the content


The 1600s were exciting years in the history of man and horse alike. The Renaissance produced remarkable breakthroughs in learning and exploration, and the 17th century was a time for implementation of ideas. What were formerly abstractions became realities. New ideas in government led to social change, sometimes revolution. People sought new lands where they could live as they chose. The horse was put to increasingly more diversified uses. It became a servant for colonists, sometimes plowing fields and frequently carrying people and goods over difficult terrain. The horse was systematically bred to achieve new characteristics better suited to the needs of the 1600s. Roads were poor in both Europe and America, so horses were bred to carry goods on their backs. Other types were bred to pace (amble), the smooth gait which carried riders over rough roads with the greatest possible comfort. Race horses were improved by the addition of new blood.