The Oath of Office

Photocopy of photograph of Bible given to Pony Express riders
One of the Bibles Pony Express owner Alexander Majors provided to his employees.
Courtesy of the Chicago Historical Society

Alexander Majors, one of the Pony Express owners, gave each of his employees a Bible and required all employees take the following oath of service:

"I, [Name], do hereby swear, before the Great and Living God, that during my engagement, and while I am an employee of Russell, Majors and Waddell, I will, under no circumstances, use profane language, that I will drink no intoxicating liquors, that I will not quarrel or fight with any other employee of the firm, and that in every respect I will conduct myself honestly, be faithful to my duties, and so direct all my acts as to win the confidence of my employers, so help me God."

Among sir Richard Burton's observation of the service's employees was that in spite of that oath, they commonly swore and drank. Part of his observation was supported by archeological finds at the Sand Springs station. Liquor bottle fragments were the most common items found during that dig.