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Horses didn’t only work on farms. As cities grew, horses did lots of jobs to keep things in the city running. Public transportation was completely horse driven. By 1900, over 130,000 horses worked in New York City. This is ten times the number of yellow cabs on the streets there today.
One of the jobs the horses did was to pull streetcars and steam-powered fire engines. These fire engines had replaced the hand pumps that firefighters used to put out fires. Horses helped them get to where the fire was quickly and helped save many lives.
The Percheron, a strong and friendly carriage horse, was a favorite breed of the fire department.