At a reenactment this weekend I was watching the cavalry gents warm up their horses before the battle, and I started to wonder about women and horseback riding in the 1860s. This subject is of particular interest to me since I am an equestrian in my modern life.
Did women go horseback riding as a form of recreation? (I am guessing if they did it would have been the more well-to-do women who could afford to a.) be leisurely and b.) have a horse that wasn't just for work.)
If so, what did they wear? At a merchant at an event a few years ago I saw a riding habit, but I'm not sure if it was at all correct. Did women wear special riding clothing, like some women do today? Or did they just wear "regular" dresses? And what about headgear (hats, bonnets, etc.)?
Did women ride sidesaddle? Has anyone ever seen an original, or a reproduction, or even such a thing pictured?