Monday, 29 November 2010

History of the horse in Glebe, Co. Tyrone by Annette Mc Namee

When my ancestors first came to live in the Glebe the horse played a big part in their lives and to this day it is the horse that is very important in my life.

In the early 1800's and 1900's they were used to cultivate the ground by pulling a plough, turning the soil so seeds for a crop could be planted and later when the crop developed the horse would pull machinery used to harvest the crop. The horse delivered milk around Glebe and Sion Mills. They were shire or draft bred and as far as I know there were always three hardworking, faithful horses on the farm. In the 1940's the tractor was introduced which overtook the horse and by the middle of the 1950's the horse was not needed. My father still kept a horse only to breed from as he could sell the foals.

I also grew up with horses and started to ride when I was two and my daughter (who is now 20) has also been riding since she was two. My son also bought a thoroughbred mare to breed from.

The horse is very important in agricultural and social history. Throughout the years we can see how the horse was so important to the farming industry, but now the horse is mainly used for leisure purposes although there is still money to be made e.g. training racehorses, showjumping etc. Many people are now turning to these sports and there is a steady increase in sport with horses.

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