Pony Express

Frank Morris / KCUR

St. Joseph, Mo. – In 1860 the American west was booming, and the east was boiling. Civil war was at hand. A vast wilderness and high mountains blocked the rich west from the rest of the country. Rail and telegraph lines stopped in St. Joseph.

Cindy Daffron with the Pony Express museum here says that meant it took a month for news reports and government dispatches to cross that information abyss.