Budweiser Horses - Popular equine mascots of the
Anheuser-Busch Brewing Company of St. Louis, Missouri.
Since their debut at the
turn-of-the-century when August Busch, Jr. presented them to his father Adolphus
Busch for a birthday present, the eight-hitch team of powerful Clydesdales have
become the company's national trademark.
The Clydesdales started to travel around the country
in 1933 to celebrate the repeal of Prohibition. Their first stop was the
governor of New York who was responsible or getting the Prohibition repealed. He
received a case of Budweiser beer.
In 1951, Anheuser-Busch introduced the Clydesdales to
TV. Their first commercial ad depicted a team of eight horses pulling a beer
wagon through the gates of August Busch's estate (originally the Grant Mansion
owned by the father of Ulysses S. Grant).
Descended from medieval war-horses, the Clydesdales
were introduced into our country as farm animals soon after the Civil War. They
take their name from their homeland's Clydesdale River that flows through the
rustic plains of Scotland.
The characteristic traits which mark this noble breed:
eight-foot height from head to hoof, 1900-2300 pound weight, classic bay color
with the distinctive white blaze on their face and large white haired hoofs.
Each year the Clydesdales are carried some 60,000 miles about the country via a
convoy of specially designed 18 wheelers. They appear at more than 300 events
including pulling the Budweiser wagon in the New York's Macy Thanksgiving Day
Parade and the Anheuser-Busch float in the New Year's Day Rose Parade in
The names of the Clydesdale horses are Andy, Baron
Realization, Bill, Buck, Captain, Commander, Dean, Duke, Jake, Mark and Sammy.
The horses (among a population of 200+) are stabled at Grant's Farm breeding
facility in St. Louis, the Clydesdale Hamlet in Merrimack, New Hampshire and in
Their traditional stable companions are Dalmatian
dogs. A Dalmatian began riding on the Clydesdale hitch on March 30, 1950 to
commemorate the opening of the Newark Brewery.
An essential part of the Clydesdale public appearances
is the three ton red Studebaker wagon made in 1905 and adapted by Busch for beer
delivery. The horses are all trained to perform precision docking maneuvers with
While in the spotlight the horses wear braided manes
and tails adorned with ribbons and flowers and handmade harnesses (valued at
$5,000 a piece) made of imported leather, silver and brass, weighing in excess
of 130 pounds.
During the opening of the 1982 World Series, the
Clydesdale team entered into Busch stadium carrying August Busch, Jr.. The
Cardinals won that day.
The Clydesdale ad campaign has been handled by D'Arcy,
McManus, and Masius Agency since 1915.
Read more about the Budweiser Clydesdales in the book
"All the King's Horses: The Story of the Budweiser Clydesdales" by Alix Coleman
and Stephen D. Price.
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