Carousel Origins

Did you know that carousels were originally used to train soldiers for battle?

The word carousel actually derives from the Spanish word ‘carosella’ which means ‘little battle’. What now conjures fun memories of trips to the fair (AND Back Home on the Farm) actually originated from traditional jousting exercises in Europe and the Middle East. Knights would gallop in a circle and toss balls back and forth to showcase their skills and horsemanship. In the 17th century, the practice of ball tossing was replaced by mechanized training units featuring rings that riders had to spear (hence ‘The Brass Ring’). In the 18th century, the training exercise later became a popular game among commoners and carousels began popping up at fairs all over Europe. How about that?

The carousel at Back Home on the Farm features refurbished horses, each representing an important part of Virginia history. Head on out to the farm and take a whirl!

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