Pony Express

Topical Reference Page
painting of a Pony Express rider on a horse

Pony Express Rider, oil painting possibly by Lloyd Branson (1853-1925)

On April 3, 1860, riders began a relay message service between St. Joseph, Missouri and San Francisco, California. Could the lively crowds that cheered those first riders off on their journey have imagined that decades later this relatively short-lived service would become a lively piece of American popular culture? While the Pony Express itself ended 18 months after its energetic start, its story lived on through wild west shows, dime novels, and movies.

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