The Pony Express Rides Through Casper

By  | 

The Pony Express officially began on April 3, 1860, when riders traveled between Saint Joseph, Missouri and Sacramento, California to deliver mail across the country. Today, the Pony Express rode through Casper.

The Pony Express returned to Casper on Tuesday, where members of the National Pony Express Association recreated the ride.

Shawn Wade from the Bureau of Land Management explained its value. "To keep our history alive and to see that things have changed dramatically—you get the idea that things are much different,” he said. “But on the other hand, the mystique of this is how quickly the mail could be transported, and how efficiently it could be moved West."

Mail took about ten days to make the journey. This year's riders started in Sacramento and are expected to finish in Saint Joseph this Saturday.

Jimmy Simmons is a first-time rider and believes it’s important to keep history alive.

"The Pony Express was coming through for a commemorative re-ride, and it was something I've always wanted to do," Simmons said.

Riders carry historic and personal letters on the over 1,900 mile journey. These riders recognized the importance of one of first methods of long-distance communication.

"It was a great part of our history in the making of the West, and the beginning of fast communication systems," Wade said.

The Pony Express lasted only 19 months and ended with the completion of the Pacific Telegraph Line.

Simmons added, "It's a vital part of history and needs to be remembered."

The re-ride takes place every year. At the peak of the Pony Express there were over 100 stations, 80 riders, and 400 to 500 horses.