The Mounted Squad: An Illustrated History of the Toronto Mounted Police, 1886–2000


498 pages
Contains Photos, Illustrations, Bibliography, Index
ISBN 1-55041-631-6
DDC 363.1'09713'541





Reviewed by J.L. Granatstein

J.L. Granatstein, Distinguished Research Professor of History Emeritus,
York University, served as Director of the Canadian War Museum from 1998
to 2000. He is the author of Who Killed Canadian History? and co-author
of The Canadian 100: The 100 Most Infl


This is a book written for police and horse buffs. Toronto’s police
have had a mounted squad since 1886, and Bill Wardle, a long-time member
of the squad, has provided the large format, well-illustrated story of
the unit. The history is potted, anodyne, lacking detail: students of
policing and the way it has altered in the last century will find little
to hold their attention. The photographs, however, are sometimes very
good, though there are far too many of the “young girl pats Police
horse” variety. What is clear is that horses are very effective in
crowd control, frightening protesters silly. “We will use horses again
if necessary,” Toronto’s chief said after an anti–Vietnam War
rally in front of the United States Consulate in 1970, and the
half-dozen excellent photos make clear just why he believed in their


Wardle, Bill., “The Mounted Squad: An Illustrated History of the Toronto Mounted Police, 1886–2000,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed April 20, 2024,