Half Horse Half Alligator

Half Horse Half Alligator

My latest song is a little different which in part comes from the unique history behind the term "Half Horse Half Alligator".

In the early 1800s the young United States was feeling pretty tough. It had just come off what is often called their "second war of independence" in the victory of the War of 1812. The settlers along the Ohio and Mississippi rivers, namely Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi were some of the most rough and tumble. 

The phrase "half horse half alligator" was used to describe these types of men who were versatile, tough and hard to kill. Particularly "river men" like Mike Fink.

This inspired the song "The Hunters of Kentucky" which is also known as "The Battle of New Orleans" or "Half Horse and Half Alligator". It was written to commemorate Andrew Jackson's victory over the British at the Battle of New Orleans. It was originally published in 1815 and celebrated the courage of the Kentuckians who fought in the Battle of New Orleans (a quarter of Jackson's force were from Kentucky). 

In both 1824 and 1828 Jackson used the song as his campaign song during his presidential campaigns.

 Congressmen David Crockett used this phrase on the campaign trail many times. One time notably praising Arkansans:

"If I could rest anywhere, it would be in Arkansas, where the men are of the real half-horse, half-alligator breed such as grows nowhere else on the face of the universal earth."

Crockett also described himself this way to relate himself to the voting public and for a good laugh.

"I'm that same David Crockett, fresh from the backwoods, half-horse, half-alligator, a little touched with the snapping turtle; can wade the Mississippi, leap the Ohio, ride upon a streak of lightning, and slip without a scratch down a honey locust [tree]."


Back to blog


Thank you Robert!!

Hawken Horse

Very cool!


Thank you Robert! I love being your muzzy’s soundtrack!

Hawken Horse

I truly enjoy listening to your music! You are my favorite Spotify channel. The other day I was driving to shot my muzzleloader at our range, about an hour from me, and I got in the mood listening to Hawken Horse songs. Keep the music coming!

Robert Vogt

Leave a comment

1 of 3