Saturday, May 23, 2009

"What Price the Horse?" A World War I Farrier Wondered

by Fran Jurga | 23 May 2009 | Fran Jurga's Hoof Blog

A friend shared with me this photo of a farrier sergeant mounted on what looks like a mighty English hunter who must have been drafted to fight in France in World War I.

The farrier, my friend thinks, is Ted Adams. But there is much more to this story, if only we knew what it was.

First, it's a bit unusual to see a farrier mounted on a horse. This fellow didn't just hop on, he's equipped right down to his spurs.

Next, why did he want his photograph taken on this horse? And not just taken, but made into a post card?

And finally, why did he write this cryptic message on the back of the photo, and have it made into a post card that was never mailed: What price the horse? He died after.

message on postcard about war horseMy friend has a theory of why the horse died but before I share her theory, I thought I would ask blog readers to fill in the details of what might have been going on here.

Can you write the rest of the story? What was this horse to this farrier? Was it his own horse that he was giving to his country? How might the horse have died? Remember, this farrier, or his family, kept this post card. It is in beautiful condition after almost 100 years; my friend bought it on eBay with other photos and papers belonging to Ted Adams but this is a mystery. Or perhaps the farrier gave this photo to Ted Adams for some reason.

By the way, the upper patch on his sleeve is a horseshoe, the farrier insignia.

And thank you, Sunnybrook100!

--Fran Jurga

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