Historically, horse theft in Missouri was very common – particularly in Clark County, near the borders between Missouri and near Iowa and Illinois.
In the 1800s, horse theft was a big problem. In 1854, the Anti Horse Thief Association was informally organized. In 1859, the Anti Horse Thief Association was formally organized in Kansas. By the start of WWI, there were more than 40,000 members. Other anti horse-theft organizations, in other parts of the United States, were also formed. With the automobile, particularly when car ownership became common, horse theft decreased. With a decrease in horse theft, most such organizations dissolved.