The Pony Express will ride again across the American West. A re-run of the famed mail service will be June 10-20 by the National Pony Express Association.
Commemorative letters and personal mail will be carried by horse and rider relays from the Missouri River to the Sacramento River. The first rider departs the Patee House in St. Joseph, Mo., at 3 p.m. on Monday, June 10 with the last rider arriving at the Pony Express Plaza in Old Sacramento, Calif., at 4:30 p.m. on the 20th.
The route will be over the Pony Express National Historic Trail, a component of the National Trails System administered by the National Park Service. From Missouri, the mail will travel 1966 miles through Kansas, Nebraska, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah and Nevada to California.
Six hundred riders from the NPEA’s eighth state divisions will, in the custom of the Pony Express, take the Pony Express Oath and receive a bible prior to riding. Riding Relays of 1-5 miles each, they will take turns transporting a mail filled mochila — a leather square with four cantinas (pockets) sewn in the corners and fitting over their saddles.
The re-ride is a 10-day 24-hour a day event honoring the Central Overland California and Pikes Peak Express Company founded by Russell, Majors and Waddell, a Missouri freighting firm. It carried letters and telegrams from April 1860 to November 1861, to prove the Central Route through Salt Lake and Placerville, passable year-round and win a proposed federal mail contract.
The commemorative letters in this year’s mochila will be a Vignette of Pony Express History in Colorado Territory. The cachets can be purchased at 1860 prices, $5. Letter applications can be obtained by downloading them from the NPEA’s website.
Updates and information can be found on the NPEA’s website www.