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tennessee walker

The Tennessee Walker originated from the Narragansett Pacer and the Canadian Pacer. In the early 1800s, these two breeds were blended by Tennessee breeders who were looking for a horse that could handle the mountainous terrain of the area. Confederate Pacer and Union Trotter blood was added during the Civil War, creating the sturdy Southern Plantation Horse (aka the Tennessee Pacer). Breeders later added Thoroughbred, Standardbred, Morgan, and American Saddlebred blood to refine and add stamina to their gaited horse. In 1885, Black Allen was born. By the stallion Allendorf (from the Hambletonian family of Standardbreds) and out of a Morgan mare named Maggie Marshall, he became the foundation sire of the Tennessee Walking Horse breed. The breed became popular due to their smooth gaits and incredible stamina. It was common for farmers to hold match races with their Walkers, who they also used for plowing fields. Even after the coming of the automobile, Tennessee communities kept their Walkers to manage the poor roads of the area. The Walkers began to gain a reputation as a showy animal, and breeders sought bloodlines to produce refined, intelligent, flashy horses. The registry was formed in 1935. The stud book was closed in 1947, so every Walker after that date has to have both parents registered to be registered themselves.

The Tennessee Walker or Tennessee Walking Horse is a gentle and comfortable riding horse. The breed was originally bred in the Southern United States to carry the owners of plantations around their lands. (A closely related breed is the Garrett Walking Horse) Their unique four-beat "running walk" is especially comfortable to ride, making the breed a well-suited trail companion. The breed is rarely seen in any of the sport horse disciplines; however, they are good for trail riding because of their smooth gaits, stamina and easy temper, and are also seen in Western riding disciplines and in harness.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Tennessee Walker".