Swiss Ammunition Saddle

In both wars, equines were vital to efforts of both sides for everything from transport to muscle power. Pack animals particularly vital;  harnessed in special saddles, they carried everything from guns to medicine across every kind of terrain. Mules, tending to be more surefooted, were the preferred animal for pack work but all equines were used.

This particular saddle was intended for the carriage of ammunition rounds. The frames sticking out over the horse’ flanks are detachable however, allowing for more versatility. Fully assembled, but unloaded, the harness weighs 27kg.

This particular harness is believed to date to around 1920, and had made it’s way to America before being brought to the UK.

This photo from the internet demonstrates the kind of containers that would have been strapped onto the frame and also the extra strapping around the horses chest and hindquarters that prevents the saddle from slipping when climbing or descending.