What was meant in the movie Fort Apache when Henry Fonda said he would “travel by shank’s mare?”

James Andrews

Chickasaw, Alabama

A shank refers to the lower part of a person’s leg, from the knees to the ankle. So “traveling by shank’s mare” is a humorous way of referring to walking. Other similar expressions were “shank’s pony” and “horse with 10 toes.”

Related Articles

  • warlock true west

    Henry Fonda is one of the few actors to portray Wyatt Earp in two films—more…

  • Illustration by Bob Boze Bell

    In 1874, newlywed Martha Summerhayes accompanied her soldier husband on a grueling three-month journey from…

  • One could argue there is enough negative about the history of Fort Apache that people…