The Horse in the City: Living Machines in the Nineteenth Century

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Overview

Clay McShane and Joel A. Tarr, prominent scholars of urban life, here explore the critical role of the horse in the growing nineteenth-century metropolis. Using diverse sources, they examine how horses were housed and fed; how workers bred, trained, marketed, and employed their four-legged assets; and how horses affected the physical form of the city.

In addition to providing an insightful account of life and work in nineteenth-century urban America, The Horse in the City brings us to a richer understanding of how the animal fared in terms of both treatment and health in this unnatural and presumably uncomfortable setting.

"Presents a rich and complex picture of nineteenth-century urban life. McShane and Tarr have given us a book that is simultaneously an urban social history, a social history of a technology, and an environmental history."— Technology and Culture

"Their work will no doubt encourage many scholars to reevaluate what they know about the physical formation of U.S. cities and what was going on in them." —American Quarterly

"A brilliant account of an incredibly important but understudied topic."— American Historical Review

"A fascinating story of the 'Gelded' Age."— Journal of American History

Johns Hopkins University Press

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Editorial Reviews

Journal of Interdisciplinary History

Valuable contribution not only to urban history but also to nineteeth-century economic, business, environmental, and social history.

History Wire

In recent decades, such ethnic groups as Italians, African-Americans and Chinese have rightfully demanded recognition for their share in building America in the days of the Industrial Revolution. Horses clearly did as much but had no one to speak in their behalf. Now they do.

New England Quarterly

An outstanding study of a neglected topic.

Choice

The growth and development of the 19th-century city would have been vastly different without the horse, even though the horse's role was taken for granted by city residents and ignored by historians.

Technology and Culture

Presents a rich and complex picture of nineteenth-century urban life. McShane and Tarr have given us a book that is simultaneously an urban social history, a social history of a technology, and an environmental history.

Journal of Economic History

Overall, McShane and Tarr have written an outstanding and highly creative book. It should interest historians of cities, the environment, economics and animals.

American Historical Review - John H. Hepp

A brilliant account of an incredibly important but understudied topic.

Urban History - Paul Laxton

McShane and Tarr's book, mercifully free of academic argot, a pleasure to read and full of enjoyable and surprising revelations, is welcome. And, if you'll forgive the metaphor, it covers the ground well.

American Quarterly - Robert Buerglener

Their work will no doubt encourage many scholars to reevaluate what they know about the physical formation of U.S. cities and what was going on in them.

Agricultural History - George B. Ellenberg

A deeply researched exploration of the intimate relationships among horses, humans, urbanization, industrialization, and reform.

Journal of American Culture - Ray B. Browne

Taken together the horse and the growth of the city fill an interesting and useful history of America. This ride is highly recommended.

Economic History Review - Marta Knight

A valuable addition to the growing discussion of animals in history... the reader is left with a greater appreciation of the horse as an active participant in American history.

Environmental History - Brian Black

It should be required reading for anyone interested in the environmental history of urban life in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

Journal of American History - D. Scott Molloy

A fascinating story of the 'Gelded' Age.

Choice

The growth and development of the 19th-century city would have been vastly different without the horse, even though the horse's role was taken for granted by city residents and ignored by historians.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781421400433
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
  • Publication date: 6/2/2011
  • Series: Animals, History, Culture
  • Pages: 280
  • Sales rank: 470,701
  • Product dimensions: 5.90 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Clay McShane teaches history at Northeastern University. Joel A. Tarr is the Richard S. Caliguiri University Professor at Carnegie Mellon University. In 2008, he received the Leonardo da Vinci Medal for lifetime achievement from the Society for the History of Technology.

Johns Hopkins University Press

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