Friesian Horse History


Friesian horses are originally from Friesland, a province of the Netherlands. Equestrians of Holland hold a strong affinity for Friesians. To this day, the Koninklijke Vereniging Het Friesch Paarden-Stamboek (“Royal Friesian Horse Studbook”) known worldwide as KFPS, established as a Frisian Registry in the late nineteenth century, remains the springboard Friesian Horse Association.

In the early 20th century, horses were not used for driving and agriculture as much as they had been before. Around this time, the Friesian breed almost faced extinction. However, when World War II caused a fuel shortage, Dutch farmers used horses to work their lands again. This led to the Friesian numbers bouncing back.

Friesians in North America today are descended from stock introduced to the continent in 1974. A previous attempt to bring the breed to North America was made in the seventeenth century, but those horses were bred with other equines to the point that they could no longer be called true Friesians.