Friday, June 24, 2011

Mark Twain and The Pony Express

A stamp honoring Mark Twain is being released this weekend in Sacramento, Calif.  Twain wrote about a number of things including seeing a Pony Express rider while traveling aboard a stage coach.

In his book Roughing It (1873), Twain wrote...

"In a little while all interest was taken up in stretching our necks and watching for the 'pony-rider'--the fleet messenger who sped across the continent from St. Joe to Sacramento, carrying letters nineteen hundred miles in eight days! Think of that for perishable horse and human flesh and blood to do! The pony-rider was usually a little bit of a man, brimful of spirit and endurance. No matter what time of the day or night his watch came on, and no matter whether it was winter or summer, raining, snowing, hailing, or sleeting, or whether his 'beat' was a level straight road or a crazy trail over mountain cragsand precipices, or whether it led through peaceful regions or regions that swarmed with hostile Indians, he must bealways ready to leap into the saddle and be off like the wind!"

For more on Twain's sighting of a Pony Express rider, click here.

For more on the Pony Express, click here
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posted by Don Schilling at 12:01 AM