The Mounted Patrol of San Mateo County came into being March 31, 1942, four months after Pearl Harbor Day. San Mateo County had many miles of rough, almost virgin country and unprotected coastline accessible only on horseback. Military support and protection against subversion were the principle needs that provoked the founding of the Patrol. The Mounted Patrol provided protection to our shores during the war period and provided search parties in these areas as required by the authorities.
Four men were instrumental in the original organization. They called a meeting in Redwood City during January of 1942. To this small meeting were called eight additional men who together can be considered the Charter members.
The history of the Mounted Patrol is replete with fine contributions to better citizenship. The Patrol originally started as a mounted arm of the County Sheriff's Office, but over its 60 year history it has grown into much more.
After the war, the middle years, the Patrol acquired 23 acres of property in the heart of Woodside, California, and built the most beautiful outdoor rodeo and horseshow arena in California (dedicated to Irving Kesterson, an early captain), along with a permanent grandstand, separate warm-up arena, clubhouse and more recently, a 20-stall barn.
The modern Mounted Patrol has a 501(c)3 charitable foundation, operates as a center for equestrian improvement and excellence, functions as a men's social club, and is available for local emergency services as a self-contained disaster relief center. Members of the Patrol may also elect to qualify for mounted search and rescue and be called to action throughout the State.
Community service has occupied the Patrol to an ever-increasing extent in the last few decades. Equestrian-related events are sponsored or co-sponsored by the Mounted Patrol annually. The Fourth of July NorCal Junior Rodeo, Cowboy Poetry, team penning and sorting, the San Mateo County Horsemen's Association Show, the NCEFT Poker Ride, and the Sheriff's STAR program are some of the annual events eagerly anticipated by horsemen throughout central California. Western Riding Clinics are also held weekly during the summer months. Mounted Patrol members ride in the Redwood City Fourth of July Parade and its award-winning color guard appears in parades and pageants in surrounding cities.
Members of the Patrol
Members of the Patrol are selected from accomplished riders in San Mateo, Santa Clara, San Francisco, Alameda, Marin and Santa Cruz Counties who are dedicated to horsemanship, promoting an interest in equestrian activities and serving the community.
The Mounted Patrol is proud of its heritage that has been built over the years and is recognized as one of the finest organizations of its kind in the State. Each year finds the members of the Mounted Patrol working hard to carry on and live up to this heritage.