This is a picture of "Devil Anse" Hatfield but look at the chest on that horse!!!
In other words, Devil is on his back. Sorry, couldn't help myself!!I think the face expression reflects the horse's thoughts, look at the bit on him and how snug the reins are. He is prepared for anything that might happen as it could result in a nasty jerk on his mouth
Actually, looking at the picture again, I feel like he and the horse sort of have the same face. So, yeah. Maybe they've been partners for a while and the horse just picked up the nasty face from his rider! You know, how people and their dogs supposedly start to look similar...Devil Anse is one unfriendly looking guy, would not want to pick a fight with him, even if he didn't have that big rifle in his hands.
When Devil Anse passed at age 82, he was documented at 6’ tall. He was likely a bit taller in his younger days, so that horse is pretty big. Thoroughbreds had been introduced into Virginia in the 1600’s by England, so there’s a chance the horse also has some TB in it.I think he’s a big dude, or the guy is small. It seems like a lot of the pictures from the old days make the horses look big, but those antique trees are really small. I think people used to be a lot smaller. The old beds at the ranch seem child sized.
Based on size (not just height), time period, geographic location, popularity in the eastern US, and availability (being the most popular military mount with Southerners in general and with most General officers in both Union and Confederate armies...R. E. Lee's mount, Traveler, was one...look at one of his pictures) I'd say that it is a what became known as the Saddlebred (once it was given a name as a breed). Today the breed, like the TWH (the Saddlebred predates the TWH and was one of the breeds used in creating the Tennessee Walking Horse), is nothing more than a pale shadow of what they originally were. At the time all Saddlebreds were gaited (having been created by the original crossing of Narragansett pacer and later "saddler" mares (a gaited type of horse, not an actual breed as "breed" was not a big deal back then and what become the Saddlebred were often referred to as "saddlers" early on) and the gaited offspring of a TB crossed with saddler. The goal had been to create a gaited horse that was taller than a saddler and larger (in size, not height) that TB had started becoming. Hugely popular during the War of the Great Rebellion and would have been commonly known about and available to Anse Hatfield (Lee's Traveler came from that general part of the country).