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Cavalry and Horses at VMI
A Digital Exhibit from the VMI Archives

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As early as July 1845 there is evidence of proposals to establish a cavalry unit at VMI and horses were used in drill exercises throughout the 19th century. However, the advent of ROTC in the early 20th century marked the beginning of the "horse era" at the Institute. On July 7, 1919, 100 horses arrived at VMI along with a detachment of twenty troopers from the 13th Cavalry to care for the animals and provide instruction for the cadets. The stables were ready for use on November 1, 1919 and mounted drills started immediately. VMI also established Polo and Horse Show Teams, as well as a Hunt Club; and recreational riding became a part of cadet life in the 1920's and 1930's.
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