State Horse Now Official, Signed Into Law By Gov. Stitt

Wednesday, August 10th 2022, 7:28 pm


A new state symbol was signed into law Wednesday on the steps of the state Capitol.  

The American Quarter Horse is now the official horse of Oklahoma. 

The horse joins a group of other state symbols. 

“Of course, the Scissortail is the state bird…the buffalo is the state mammal. The whitetail deer is the state big game animal. The wild turkey is actually the state bird, game bird. The rose rock is the state rock,” state Sen. Blake Stephens, (R-Tahlequah) who authored the bill, said. 

The process has taken several years. 

“Oklahoma is the show horse capitol of the world,” Stephens said. “All the breeds in the state of Oklahoma, they want their breeds to be named the state horse. That’s where it’s a contentious bill. That’s where it’s very difficult. It’s taken a lot of time, a lot of work.”

There’s a rich history behind the American Quarter Horse.

“The Colonial Spanish Horse was brought to America in the 1500s by the Spanish conquistadors. These were pure Spanish Mustangs, a relatively small but tough breed of horse,” state bill 3261 read in part. “After the introduction of these horses to Native American tribes, the horses became essential to the tribes…”

More than a symbol, the American Quarter Horse represents a multi-billion dollar industry in Oklahoma and a way of life. 

“These horses symbolize rural Oklahoma, but you know what, everyone loves a horse,” Sen. Stephens said. 


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