Justin Morgan Had a Horse

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First edition

Justin Morgan Had a Horse is a children's historical novel by Marguerite Henry, illustrated by Wesley Dennis and published by Wilcox & Follett of Chicago in 1945.[1] It concerns horse-breeding in Vermont in the late eighteenth century.[2] It was one runner-up for the Newbery Medal in 1946 (a Newbery Honor Book in later terms).[3]

An edition was published by Rand McNally in 1954[4] with new copyrights by both Henry and Dennis. The Library of Congress catalog records report 89 pp. and 169 pp. respectively.[1][4]

Plot summary[edit]

The schoolmaster, Justin Morgan, takes two colts as payment for an old debt. The younger of the two grows into a sturdy, though small, riding horse which served as the foundation of the Morgan breed of horse.


In 1972, the book was adapted as a film by Disney Studios. It starred Don Murray as Justin Morgan. [5]

John Smith, formerly of the NBC series Laramie, played the part of Mr. Ames.


  1. ^ a b LCCN agr45000372.
  2. ^ The Newbery Companion, John Thomas Gillespie and Corinne J. Naden, Libraries Unlimited, 2001, p. 140.
  3. ^ "Newbery Medal and Honor Books, 1922–Present". American Library Association. Retrieved 2009-12-30. 
  4. ^ a b LCCN 54-8903.
  5. ^ "Justin Morgan Had a Horse (1972)". IMDb.