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Abraham Lincoln's Old Bob
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Abraham Lincoln's Old Bob

Abraham Lincoln's horse, not to be confused with his son, Robert Lincoln, will likely forever be known as "Old Bob".

It has been said that historians can't agree whether the horse's name was Old Robin or Old Bob. Old Bob has become the name that has become most commonly agreed upon.

Lincoln owned Old Bob prior to his presidency when he was still practicing law in Springfield, Illinois. He was a carriage horse that Lincoln used in his travels to places that the railroad was not yet connected to.

Old Bob was a replacement for Old Buck, who Lincoln retired when he became too old for regular use. Old Buck was kept by Lincoln in his home stable with another one of his horses named Old Tom.

Prior to his move to D.C. after being elected President, Lincoln sold Old Bob to John Flynn, so he stayed behind in Illinois when Lincoln left.

Old Bob was put out to pasture by Flynn in 1865. He was brought out of retirement to participate in a parade on April 4, 1865, celebrating that capitalization of Richmond as the capital of the Confederate States. Old Bob was decked out in red, white and blue for the occasion.

Following Lincoln's assassination, Old Bob was brought out of retirement one more time to follow behind the hearse at Lincoln's funeral. Old Bob wore a drape of black and silver and was led by a family friend, Henry Brown. Behind old Bob in Lincolns funeral procession was a carriage carrying Lincoln's son Robert. It has been said that Old Bob and Young Bob, the president's son, were his only family that attended the funeral.

There is no confirmed information of Old Bob's final years, though stories have been told that many showmen offered to purchase Bob to use in their performances. Flynn refused all offers.

For the sesquicentennial anniversary of the Civil War (2011-2015), Breyer Models produced a model of Old Bob, in his funeral drape.

On the sesquicentennial anniversary of Lincolns death at his former home in Illinois, a horse used by Daniel Day-Lewis in the major motion picture Lincoln was used representing Old Bob.

A children's book was also made the year of the anniversary, by Trudy Krisher, titled An Affectionate Good Bye - The Story of Old Abe and Old Bob.

Though we have no confirmed information about his final days, as horse lovers, let us hope Old Bob spent them grazing in a shady pasture.

More about Trivia, warhorse, History, Lincoln

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