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United States Military Saddles, 1812-1943 Paperback – September 15, 1988


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United States Military Saddles, 1812-1943 + American Military Horsemanship: The Military Riding Seat of the United States Cavalry, 1792 through 1944
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: University of Oklahoma Press (September 15, 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0806121025
  • ISBN-13: 978-0806121024
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 7.1 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #855,957 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Randy Steffen, who died early in 1977, while these volumes were in production, was born in Maverick County, Texas of part Sioux-Cheyenne Indian descent. He was the author of more than a thousand articles on military and western history. His paintings, drawings, and sculpture have appeared in exhibits and publications in this country, Europe, South Africa, and Australia. In 1976 he was presented the George Washington Award by the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge for his contributions to American history. At the time of his death he was a Governor of the Company of Military Historians. He was the author of United States Military Saddles (1973), also published by the University of Oklahoma Press.


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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

27 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Bruce Tait on June 25, 1998
Format: Paperback
I originally ordered this book because of my interest in the "McClellan" saddles that are practically synonomous with the US Cavalry. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find that this book covers not only the McClellan series, but every single saddle ever authorized by the US Military. The book gives a narrative, the original design specs, detailed drawings of each saddle, and at least one drawing of each saddle pictured while mounted with horse and rider. The illustrations (by the author) are excellent, with great detail. This book is the only one I've been able to find that covers the subject of US Military Saddles, and I can't see it being surpassed.
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful By Mac Holmes on September 12, 2000
Format: Paperback
One of the most popular sources of information regarding military saddlery yet published, it's hard to find an avid collector, historian, or similarly obsessed person who doesn't have a copy on their shelf. Indeed, one must put this book on their "Must Have" list. That said, this book really isn't the "end all" source of info. This book was apparently a preliminary work, done before his "The Horse Soldier" series was published. Numerous saddle types are missing - artillery, pack and officers equipment are very lightly represented. There are some glaring mistakes, such as the total misidentification of the 1833 dragoon saddle, and the representation of the Ringgold pattern dragoon saddle. There are significant omissions, such as the four McClellan types used from 1887-1904, as well as a scattering of minor errors throughout the text and some drawing details. However, considering the scope of such a project and what most readers will take away from it, it's not too bad. The one disappointing aspect of this book is the constant reissue by the Univ. of Oklahoma Press without any effort to correct the multitude of errors this book sustains. I understand that Mr. Steffan willed the rights to this publication to the publisher before his death, so there may be some difficulties in actually doing this.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By El Cutachero on September 30, 2008
Format: Paperback
This brief work was a step on the path to the height of knowledge on the subject. As one reviewer stated it was a stop on the way to completion of his masterwork, the Horse Soldier (c.f), a four volume set.
I admit to much ignorance about the soldier's horse equipment before and during the Civil War, reasonable knowledge of uniformolology since that time through the twentieth century, and claim expertise in the individual equipment used by all US services since 1900 (which includes late nineteenth century issue), and definite familiarity with being a soldier from service in the Cold War period between Korea and Vietnam, I do know my US Army.
I am mainly interested in above the saddle, that is, the soldier, his clothing and individual equipment; in modern terms, the fighting and subsistance loads.
So, whats's your point, sez you?; the point is this, I was a friend of his since since we first met in 1970. We bonded immediately and we coresponded often by snail mail.
Randy, unfortunately died, before the completion of Vol 4 of Horse Soldier; there were some errors in it just as there are some in this work. But 40 years on, the state of knowledge has increased with more hands on discoveries and archive digging and the wide dissemination of knowledge on the Internet. The web site of the Society of the Military Horse is full of detailed discussion and has presented much new information. It is now possible to discuss things in near real time rather than spend ten years writing letters and making night rate phone calls to find out who's doing what. So if you find errors, omissions, and other new discoveries post them on a discussion site.
And take a look at Douglas McChristian's recent works on the 1870s and 1880s.( c.
Read more ›
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Mr Steffen wrote many books and articles over the years about the Cavalry. I read his many articles in the Western Horseman. He is a very good illustrator as well.

Anyone making a diorama or miniature tack for Model horses would get a lot from his books.

I even found a pair of saddlebags that were given to me a long time ago.

Very interesting information.
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