Pony Express marks 150 years

Staff Reports

The National Pony Express Association celebrates the 150th anniversary of the Pony Express with commemorative events on the Pony Express Trail, in Washington, D.C., the dedication of a monument in Sidney, Neb., and a re-run of the mail service June 6-26.

The re-ride of the Pony Express trail starts 8 a.m. June 6, at the western terminus of Merchant and Montgomery streets in San Francisco. The last rider gallops to the eastern terminus of Patee House in St. Joseph, Mo., at 10 a.m. June 26.

The route traverses the Pony Express National Historic trail, a 1,966-mile route from California, through Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, Nebraska, and Kansas to Missouri. The trip from San Francisco to Sacramento is the water route, first by Baylink Ferry to Vallejo, and by boat up the Sacramento River to Sacramento.

The journey by horse and rider relay begins 10:30 a.m. June 7 from Second and J streets, Old Sacramento.

The re-ride commemorates the sesquicentennial of the Central Overland California and Pikes Peak Express Company of Russell, Majors and Waddell that carried letters and telegrams on the central route through South Pass, Salt Lake and Placerville, from April 1860 to November 1861.

The short-lived mail service became a symbol of the old West and inspired the Pony Express Re-Ride. In 1992, the trail was added to the National Trails System, and the National Park Service preserves historic sites.

More than 600 riders and 1,200 volunteers participate in the event by transporting a mochila of commemorative letters and mail.

Commemorative letters with special cancellation by the US Postal Service are available at the 1860 cost of $5 at NPEA, 2482 Road M, Emporia, KS 66801, or (620) 342-6963.

Pony Express information, xphomestation.com or National Pony Express Association, PO Box 236, Pollock Pines, CA 95726 or (916) 332-8382.


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