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Pony Express

What do you know about Pony Express?
"Check Your Answers" at the end of the page.

Take 2 points for each right answer.  Maximum this page: 20 points!

1) The Pony Express was a fast mail service crossing the North American continent from St. Joseph, Missouri, to Sacramento, California, from April 1860 to October 1861. Since 1866 until 1990, the Pony Express logo was used in security business. Presently, "Pony Express" is a trademark for postal services in Russia (by Freight Link) and US (by the United States Postal Service).Old West History Made Easy

  • True or False?

2) Founded by William Hepburn Russell, William B. Waddell, and Alexander Majors.
When was the Pony Express officially established?

  1. February 6, 1860

  2. April 3, 1860

  3. May 3, 1860

3) In 1845, messages to the west coast had to travel by ship around the tip of South America or by ship-train-and ship again across the Isthmus of Panama.
How long did it take President James K. Polk to deliver a message to the Far West?

  1. One month

  2. Three months

  3. Six months

4) By 1860, the fastest route was the Butterfield Stage line from St. Louis, Missouri, through El Paso, Texas, which took 25 days. It was almost 600 miles shorter to deliver the mail over a central or northern route. However, there were concerns whether these alternatives were viable during the winter snows.
How long did it take to deliver a message in 1860?

  1. 10 days

  2. 20 days

  3. 25 days

5) Russell, Majors and Waddell, headquartered in Lexington, Missouri (the hometown of Russell and Waddell), was one of the biggest outfitters for travelers on the Santa Fe and Oregon trails.  The firm operated a vast complex in the West Bottoms of Kansas City, Missouri, and also outfitted the army from its western base at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.

  • True or False?

6) They assembled 190 relay stations over 1,966 miles from St. Joseph to Sacramento, along with 50 riders and 500 horses.
What was the weight of the mail allowed on each ride?

  1. 5 pounds

  2. 10 pounds

  3. 20 pounds

7) How many miles did a rider travel before giving way to the next rider?

  1. 75 to 100 miles

  2. 100 to 125 miles

  3. 125-150 miles

8) What was the pay for the riders?

  1. $100 per month

  2. $100 per week

  3. $200 per month

9) Who did The Weekly West (April 4, 1860) report as the first rider on the Westward journey?

  1. Bill Elliott

  2. Johnson William Richardson

  3. Wyatt Earp

10) At 2:45 a.m., who was the first rider to begin the journey from Sacramento?

  1. William (Sam) Hamilton

  2. Frank E. Webner

  3. William Cody

More US History Trivia


Pony Express
[Answers]

1) True  2) B.  3) A.  4) C.  5) True  6) C.  7) A.  8) A.  9) B.  10) A.

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