The Dignity of Horse Parking: The East-Side

After the recent great flood of ‘010, I decided to take a tour of the East-Side of Providence to survey the damage. I decided to take my horse, OP (named for my home town), in case I had to wade through any rivers that were swollen beyond their banks.  Also, I have observed the Providence Police use their horses for crowd control, and I wanted to be prepared in case I ran into an unruly mob. As I galloped through the wet streets,  I was delighted to see how many places were available for me to “park” my horse. I am using “quotation marks” around “park” because that is what the young people say these days, while I usually prefer to say “hitch.” However, I shall succumb to modern trends and go with “park.” As I was saying, I was delighted at the number and variety of horse-parking posts available to the contemporary equestrian while enjoying a trot around the neighborhood.  My first stop was at the First Church of Christ, Scientist where, as I have previously written, there are these handsome posts:

I am always so pleased to loop the reins over these horse-head shaped posts. And there are so many! I believe that this church has at least 5 posts. Now, this may not be enough for most churches at Easter or Christmas. However, judging from their name, I believe that these Christian “Scientists” are more likely to worship Darwin than Jesus, so maybe Easter crowds are not a problem for them.

After discussing the details of Scientology with a church-goer, I moved south to a neighborhood adjacent to Brown University. I did not find any standing water, but I did find this handsome horse-parking spot modeled after a twig:

This post includes the added security of a loop where I can secure my horse with a padlock. The handsome twig design nicely complements the leaves that have been on the ground since the Autumn.

I was about to lock up my horse to the twig post when I noticed another hitching post, less than a block away!

Ahh, now that is a secure horse parking place! It’s made from stone! No street urchin will dare try to steal OP! I hitched her and locked her and set out on foot. The East-Side was largely unaffected by this week’s deluge due to being perched on a hill overlooking the down-city. I encountered no unruly mobs, and no standing water, just quite a few sump-pumps working over-time.

Later in the week, I rode to the omnibus station to meet some friends. There were no hitching posts anywhere to be seen! I was only able to  tie OP’s reins to this railing:

As you can see, some cyclist had parked here previously, only to have someone steal his bike and leave the empty lock as a mockery. I was wary of leaving my steed in such a dangerous spot, so I looped the reins through the bike lock and kept her in sight. My friends arrived soon enough and we mounted OP and galloped back to the East-Side, where thank God, there is ample horse parking!

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7 responses to “The Dignity of Horse Parking: The East-Side

  1. Pingback: Portland, where I didn’t take enough pictures, despite the many in this post « Car-Free in PVD

  2. Pingback: Destinations make the trip worth while | Car-Free in PVD

    • Whoah. That’s interesting. It’s good to know that there was a time when people actually used these hitching posts and they weren’t just an affectation.

  3. Do you know the exact location of that hitching post. I have a photo that shows it dating from sometime in the 1870-1890 time frame.

    • Hey Zach, sorry for my delay in replying – I don’t check my comments that often. There are several of this particular model of hitching post scattered around Providence. This particular one is in front of 5 Cooke Street, Providence RI. If you look up the google street view, you should be able to find it.

  4. Thanks for the location. Was driving me crazy.

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