"In mid-19th Century America, communication between St. Joseph, on the fringe of western settlement, and gold mining communities of California challenged the bold and made skeptical the timid. Into this picture rode the Pony Express. In rain and in snow, in sleet and in hail over moonlit prairie, down tortuous mountain paths . . . pounding pony feet knitted together the ragged edges of a rising nation.” Frank S. Popplewell
October 24, 1861: The Pony Express meets its end when the first transcontinental telegraph line across the United States is completed. Photograph of Broncho Charlie Miller - purported last surviving Pony Express rider, and performer in Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show. NYHS Image #88386d.
Josephine Baker (6-3-06 to 4-12-75) was an American-born French dancer, singer, and actress. Born Freda Josephine McDonald in St. Louis, Missouri, she became a citizen of France in 1937. Fluent in both English and French, Baker became an international musical and political icon. She is also noted for her contributions to the Civil Rights Movement in the United States, for assisting the French Resistance during World War II, and for receiving the French military honor, the Croix de guerre.
The rough-riding talents of Lulu Parr were not first seen at Buffalo Bill’s Wild West. Her skill with the gun caught the attention of Pawnee Bill, who signed her to his show in 1903. She left that show but came back in 1911. By that time, Pawnee Bill had joined Buffalo Bill’s show. Buffalo Bill was so in awe of Lulu’s willingness to ride unbroken ponies that he presented her with an ivory-handled Colt single-action revolver, engraved with “Buffalo Bill Cody to Lulu Parr—1911.”