Acrylic on Canvas | 40 x 30 | $4000
Through the centuries spotted horses have been given names ranging from the mystical Celestial Horses in China, to the Knabstrupper in Denmark, to the Tigre in France. Joining these marvelous marked horses is the American breed, the Appaloosa.
During 1680 Pueblo Indian slaves revolted and drove the Spanish from northern New Mexico. The Pueblos kept the sheep and cattle, while they traded the horses to the Plains Tribes. Through trade and theft, horses made their way east and north. By the early 1700s the Nez Perce had acquired horses and quickly became adept at breeding them for excellence.
The Nez Perce became excellent horsemen and, unlike other tribes, they practiced selective breeding of their horses by gelding the inferior stallions and trading off the poorer stock. As a result, the Nez Perce were able to produce better horses than other tribes. The Nez Perce horse herds multiplied into the thousands and in an economy where horses equaled wealth, the Nez Perce became known as an affluent tribe.
Around the late 1800s the term Appaloosa was first used to describe the spotted horses of the Palouse region. The Palouse, or Palouse Country, is the area of Washington and Idaho drained by the Palouse River. Settlers coming into the area began to refer to these spotted horses as “A Palouse Horse”. Over time, the name evolved into “Palousey,” “Appalousey,” and finally “Appaloosa.”