Carousels, A Brief History

Carousels…a magical, memorable ride full of laughter, fun, and music!
Carousels date back hundreds of years, rising in popularity in America during the 19th and 20th centuries. Did you know that the elaborate decoration of the carved horses was originally found only on the ‘audience’ side of the animals? Early carousel horses hung from chains which ‘flew out’ when the carousel turned. Today they are attached to poles that move, giving the rider the traditional up/down motion. Music continues to be a central part of the carousel ride, with tunes that evoke memories of fairgrounds, festivities, and fun. Carousels bring a smile to anyone’s face and are remembered for their beauty, their delightful music, and the laughter and joy of the riders.

So the next time you take a ride on a carousel, be sure to let your inner child come out to play but remember to take it easy on that rollicking noble steed beneath you – it could be a rare antique. While more than 7,000 carousels once existed, just 300 remain.

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