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[REV 25-NOV-2014]

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Louisita Rides Again: 1913

Louisita Rides Again: 1913

The second of seven 1913 glass negatives from the Harris & Ewing Collection captioned "Louisto Wood." It's Equestrian Tuesday at Shorpy! View full size.

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Funny Girl

She really, really looks like Barbra Streisand in that picture.

Louisita's life

Apparently Louisita's brother Leonard was a bit of a scoundrel. Also had a bit on Louisita here.

November 28, 1960 - Louise B. Wood, daughter of the late Major General Leonard Wood, died of a heart attack yesterday morning at her home at 70 Haven Avenue, New York. Her age was 60. She had a summer home at Pocasset, Massachusetts.

Tighten that bridle

The horse show mom in me wants to shorten the cheek pieces to raise the nose band and bit. Then raise her stirrups a hole or 5. I do love her boots though and I haven't seen a canvas girth in a good 30 years.

Nasty Dad

Thanks for the ID, doctormatt; looking up her father, Gen. Leonard Wood, it appears as though he was quite a nasty piece of work. Though Wood was politically very well-connected, Mark Twain relegated him to history's infamy for leading the Moro Crater massacre (1906) during the Philippine-American war, which saw the slaughter of over 600 unarmed villagers, including women and children.

A "Bully Time"

An amusing side note to this story is that the army officers got lost on their return trip to Washington.

Washington Post, Oct 22, 1913

Idol of the Soldiers

Little Miss Wood Rides Ninety Miles on Officers' Hike

Little Miss Louisita Wood, the 12-year-old daughter of Maj. Gen. Leonard Wood, chief of staff of the arm, is the idol of the arm - or of that portion of it stationed in the vicinity of Washington. She won the admiration of the fighting forces because of her riding, for she accompanied her father and Col. H.O.S. Hiestand, of the adjutant general's department, throughout virtually all their annual 90-mile ride.

Gen. Wood and Col. Hiestand, because of their pressing duties, were unable to get away with the other officers on the yearly "hike."

Had "Bully Time," She Declares

The regulations insist that 90 miles must be covered in three days, and the two officers decided to push their horses over the distance in off hours.

"Well, I'm going too," announced little Miss Wood. Her father demurred, but she had her way. The final ride of 45 miles through a blinding rain was occasioned by reason of a mistake in a road back to Washington, but Miss Wood galloped in laughingly to Fort Myer, her hair blowing in the night wind. She told a dozen troopers who sprang to her horse's bridle that she'd had a "bully time."

Washington Post, May 31, 1918

Miss Wood's Long Ride Wins Her
Praise From Army and Society

When Miss Louisita B. Wood, the 13-year-old daughter of Maj. Gen. and Mrs. Leonard Wood, galloped into Fort Myer last week, upon Fort Hunter, a thoroughbred racer, and shook the raindrops from her wind-blown blond tresses, the soldiers of the post had a new idol, and Washington society added to the plaudits which it had already bestowed upon this youthful horsewoman as she paraded her mounts in the show ring. Miss Wood had just completed a 45-mile-ride, the last leg of the annual ride which her father, as an officer of the army, must take in compliance with regulations.

But Miss Wood had not done anything unusual for her. The applauding public probably is not aware that practically every Saturday and Sunday she accompanies Gen. Wood on a 30-mile ride, and during the summer can be seen daily taking the stirrup upon her favorite pony Stantiago for a 10-mile morning gallop.

This is no fad of a day with Miss Wood. Since she was 6 years old, horseback riding has been her favorite pastime. In the Fort Myer stables her pony Santiago, a small cuban horse, is the most pampered occupant. Last spring he and his owner captured the first prize in the pony class at the Fort Myer horse show - a handsome silver loving cup. Miss Wood has also entered and ridden Santiago at the national horse show in this city.

The other filly

What intrigues me is the horse. It is pony size, but has the conformation of a good thoroughbred. I've never seen anything like it. Anybody?

aka Louise

In case anyone is searching for more information on Louisita, I thought I'd mention this April 14, 1920, N.Y. Times article, which refers to her as "Miss Louise Wood".

Betting it's a steamroller

The "thing" between the horse and the car looks like a steamroller to me.
Looks like the top of a boiler and smokestack projecting up over the rear roller cover.

Census blank

Curious that I cannot locate the first name of Louisto anywhere in the 1900, 1910, or 1920 census reports. Of course, there have been a lot of transcription errors due to marginal cursive writing by the enumerators.

[I suspect "Louisto" is a typo or mistranscription. - Dave]

The Thing

What is that next to the car?

It's a girl!

I wish we could see how she grew up. Did she blossom and turn out to be a handsome woman or one of those poor unfortunates who looked more like their horses.

SHORPY OLD PHOTO ARCHIVE | History in HD is a vintage photo archive featuring thousands of high-definition images from the 1850s to 1960s. (Available as fine-art prints from the Shorpy Archive.) The site is named after Shorpy Higginbotham, a teenage coal miner who lived 100 years ago.

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