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Toy rocking horse

Toy rocking horse

Andrew Gibson’s first steed

This toy rocking horse belonged to Andrew Gibson, who grew up at Burrungurroolong station near Goulburn, New South Wales, during the 1920s and 30s. Andrew and his sister Susan were taught to ride at a young age, and from a fine start on this trusty steed, Andrew grew into an excellent rider and became a vet, eventually owning and managing both Burrungurroolong and adjacent Tirranna stations.

Wooden rocking horse with elliptical wheels.
Wooden rocking horse with elliptical wheels, used by Andrew Gibson. National Museum of Australia. Donated by the Gibson family in memory of Andrew and Susan Gibson. Photo: Jason McCarthy.

Horses for transport and fun

Up until the 1950s, particularly in rural areas, many Australian children learned to ride at an early age and relied on horses to get to school, visit friends or simply for fun. Horse-themed toys were as ubiquitous as cars and trucks are today.

Andrew Gibson on his rocking horse.
Andrew Gibson on his rocking horse, Burrungurroolong, New South Wales, 1929-30. National Museum of Australia.


People and the Environment

Horses in Australia is part of the National Museum's People and the Environment program. Discover more stories about people's relationships with Australia's natural and built environments on our People and the Environment website.