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"Winchester," General Philip H. Sheridan's War Horse

Presented by officers of the Second Michigan Cavalry to General Sheridan in Rienzi, Mississippi, in 1862, it was ridden by him in nearly every engagement in which he participated during the remainder of the Civil War, including the occasion of his ride from Winchester to Cedar Creek, Virginia, October 19, 1864, immortalized by Thomas Buchanan Read in his poem entitled "Sheridan's Ride." After the Battle of Cedar Creek, the name of the horse was changed by General Sheridan from "Rienzi" to "Winchester."

"Winchester" died in 1878. His body was mounted and presented by General Sheridan to the museum of the Military Service Institution of the United States, Governors Island, New York. At a later date that organization transferred "Winchester" to the Smithsonian Institution.

Prepared by the Division of Armed Forces History in cooperation with Smithsonian's Public Inquiry Services

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