Pony Express History - What Was The Pony Express?

What Was The Pony Express?

If you receive a message and pass it on to someone else, you are acting as a relay. Relays are useful for sending messages over long distances.
In telecommunications, relays pick up a signal and make it stronger before passing it on.
Without relays, the signal would be too weak to understand by the time it reached the end of its journey.
One of the most famous relay systems was the Pony Express, which carried mail from St Joseph, Missouri, in the United States of America, over the mountains to Sacramento, California.
This was in 1860 and 1861, before there were railways or telegraph lines across North America.
Pony Express riders used fast horses or ponies. 
The horses were changed every 10-15 miles (16-24 kilometers).
Each rider traveled 74 miles (120 kilometers) or more in a working day. So a message got through much more quickly than it would have with a single messenger.
But by October 1861, the transcontinental telegraph was completed, and the Pony Express was no longer needed.
Riders of the Pony Express traveled in relays day and night in all kinds of weather. A package could travel the entire 1,962-mile (3,164-kilometer) trail in 10 days or less.
Frank E. Webner, pony express rider, ca. 1861
Creator(s): Department of Commerce. Bureau of Public Roads. (08/20/1949 - 04/01/1967)
Historical Photograph File of the Bureau of Public Roads, 1896 - 1963; Records of the Bureau of Public Roads, 1892 - 1972; Record Group 30; National Archives.