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See also: wheel horse



wheel +‎ horse; from analogy with the horse that did the bulk of work in a team.


wheelhorse (plural wheelhorses)

  1. A person who labors heavily for a particular cause, without being concerned about recognition
    • 1997, David Backes, A Wilderness Within: The Life of Sigurd F. Olson[1], ISBN 0816628424, page 369:
      He was a wheelhorse, a tower of strength, to the Park Service and to the forces that were trying to establish new parks, seashores, canoe wildernesses, and other reservations during the Kennedy and Johnson years.