Before 1878, few people knew what a galloping horse looked like in slow motion. That changed when Eadweard Muybridge, witnessed by the local press, used a clever apparatus to take a series of photographs as a horse galloped by. The result was “Sallie Gardner at a Gallop”, a.k.a. “The Horse in Motion”. Back then, you could watch the series of photographs as a movie on a zoopraxiscope. Today, you can watch it in an online video.
I first became aware of this piece of history when my co-worker Karl Henkel made a colorful rendition of related photographs, “Annie G. Galloping” (pictured at right). I looked up the story behind these photographs, but it didn’t answer the question I was wondering about: Who were the guys riding the horses?