Tuesday, April 3

Orphans preferred

"Wanted: Young, skinny, wiry fellows not over eighteen. Must be expert riders, willing to risk death daily. Orphans preferred."

Sheesh, I could have done that! I'm young, skinny and not over 18.


The first successful United States Pony Express run from St. Joseph, Mo., to Sacramento, Calif., began on April 3, 1860.

(Incidentally, the Pony Express headquarters was one block away from Jesse James' home 
in St. Joseph, where he was shot and killed on April 3, 1882 by Robert Ford.)

The Pony Express carried messages by horseback riders in staged relays across the prairies, plains, deserts, and mountains of the western United States. It became the most direct means of east-west communication before the telegraph and was vital for tying California with the Union just before the Civil War.

During its 18 months of operation, it reduced the time for messages to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts to about 10 days, with telegraphic communication covering about half the distance across the continent and mounted couriers the rest.

The start of the Civil War interrupted operations and the Pony Express announced its closure on Oct. 26, 1861, just two days after the transcontinental telegraph reached Salt Lake City and connected Omaha, Nebraska and Sacramento.

The Pony Express had grossed $90,000 and lost $200,000 in 18 months.

Hmph, they wouldn't have lost $200,000 if they'd hired ME!


  1. "Steampunk Addie...have horse...will travel."
    Yep, you would have made money for them for sure.

    Have you thought about adding a side column to your blog? Kind of a "Ask Addie" for those of us who might have questions about the Steampunk lifestyle and about time travel?

  2. Oh yes, I think that is an awesome idea .. hope that you do that .. we would love to find out more ..

    1. Thanks for the suggestion! Ask Addie is now up and I've answered the first questions at: http://steampunkaddie.blogspot.com/p/dear-addie.html