Idea of a Pony Express

The idea behind the Pony Express, soon affectionately abbreviated to “the Pony,” was not new, even in America. Postmasters general John McLean and Amos Kendall had sent horsemen racing day and night to speed market information between certain cities for several times the price of normal postage. These express services had indeed cut delivery times—between New York City and New Orleans, say, to half the fourteen days required by stagecoaches—but they were soon replaced in the East by the faster, cheaper railroads.