Tractors were few in the early 1800's in central United States. Horses were the beasts to pull most all of the farm machinery. As this country was settled most farmers had only one horse. They would have to prepare the soil by plowing and raking but then would sow their seed by hand. Later horses of all sizes would become working teams and the larger the horse the better to use in the field. The photo is shown in the Granger, Iowa Centennial Book. The town of Granger is just south of where I live so these are scenes of everyday farming in my county, Dallas County, Iowa.
One would have to wear warm clothes as they traveled in the winter. I believe this was a doctor making a house call in the Granger area.
Having a horse drawn carriage, or wagon, meant tying it up to the rail next to the business you are visiting. As you can see the streets are dirt streets and the telephone and/or electricity is in the town. The source book in which I found these photos was created in 1984 and they were celebrating their 100 years in existence as a town. Some of these structures are still standing today as you look down the street. No many of them but some.
Horsepower was essential to bring in the harvest. I do see there is some sort of a lift, gasoline powered, that will elevate the bundles of hay to the haymow. You can see the man standing at the top of the lift waiting for bundles to be sent to him in which he would take a pitchfork and heave it into the mow.
In southern Iowa where I grew up and went to school there was a man who used his horses to plow gardens. This photo is in Murray, Iowa and George Both is driving his team through town to go plow another garden. The date of this photo has to be 1956 or a little later judging by the look of the cars in the photo. I remember seeing him drive through town and thought nothing of it.
I would help take care of my father in laws horse not 8 years ago. I am not a great horsemen but I did have to feed and water the horse on the farm twice a day. It was important to check on them so they don't get out and wander onto the highway. My wife's father had three horses and four mules for a while in my early years in the family. The mules kept escaping and he had to eventually sell them or learn to shut his gates better.
Sepia Saturday is a great place to visit many people on both sides of the globe who are sharing photos and thoughts about the pictures. Visit the others in this group by clicking here on SEPIA SATURDAY to be taken to the listings of all the others.