Sovereign Oaks Farm Friesians

History of the Friesian horse

 Friesians are a very old breed of horse, having been cultivated in the north of Friesland centuries ago. When the new world was discovered, Friesian horses made their way here too.  Dutch settlers brought the breed to America.  New holland ir now called New York. It is believed that the Friesian may have contributed to the bloodlines of what would eventually become the Morgan horse, the Canadian horse and the Tennessee Walker.  In American, cross breeding soon resulted in the disappearnce of the purebred Friesian for many years.   It wasn't until the 1970 when Thomas Hannon imported a number of theses horses that the Friesian set hoof on the U.S. shore once again.   Ever since then, their popularity has grown.  In the last 10 years, the number of Friesians in the US has gone from less than 1,000 to more than 10,000. With their easy going temperment, Friesians have captured the hearts of many horse lovers.  Heavy -boned, jet black and high stepping, this breed makes a beautiful carriage horse as well as a dramatic saddle and exceptional dressage horse.  With more interest all the time in Friesians for dressage.Friesians were first imported to the States in 1625. The Dutch loved and love to travel and trade, and founded New Amsterdam. This city that was later taken over by the English and its name changed into New York. These first imported horses most likely influenced the Morgan horse breed. Many other horse breeds have also been influenced by Friesians, like for example the Merens (looking like a smaller version of the Friesian horse).


make a taller, lighter horse, to accomdate this Sport requirement. 

With such a distinguished breed, guidelines for breeding are in order.  The Friesian Horse Association of North American ,FHANA, is the representative for the US and Canada working with the original Friesian horse association, Friese Paarden Stamboek, KFPS, in the Netherlands.  Established in 1879, the KFPS maintains the studbook for all european Friesians, and has about 10,000 members world wide.  FHANA celebrates it's 25th anniversary in 2009, while the KFPS celebrates it's 130th.  FHANA is the North American representative for the KFPS.  

To oversee and control quality of the horses being bred, KFPS requires that only foals with a dam in the Main Studbook, (mare studbook or Foal Book) and a stallion with KFPS approved breeding priviliges shall be registered in the main stud book.   The number of approved breeding stallions in the US is small, although approved stallions in the NL are available to breeders through the importation of frozen semen.  

Over the past four decades.the Friesian horse has grown from a European legend to a common sight for many horse lovers here in the United States.  No doubt the breeds dramatic looks and tracable temperment will continue to provide horse lovers with more reasons to cherish this majestic breed. Their dramatic look makes them a natural in television and movies, and they are seen more often than ever.

FHANA - Friesian Horse Association of North America