In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Arizona's Hashknife Pony Express, the oldest, officially sanctioned pony express, Scottsdale Public Art Program presents Passing the Legacy.
The life size and quarter size bronze monuments, created by Herb Mignery, encapsulate the adventure and spirit of the original pony express, depicting the legendary moment the mail is handed off from one rider to another. At 9 feet, 4 inches tall, 20 feet long and six feet wide, the life-size monument will be unveiled on Feb. 1 at the Marshall Way roundabout on the north side of the Arizona Canal in downtown Scottsdale.
"The piece is extremely detailed, exhibiting intricate movements that display the power, energy and adrenaline rush of the ride," said Mignery.
A legendary American tradition established in 1860 was revived in 1958 by Arizona's Hashknife Pony Express. The annual, January ride originates in historic Holbrook and travels through 200 miles of terrain, including the Mogollon Rim Country and the Mazatzal mountain range. More than two dozen riders carry 20,000 first-class letters by horseback using antique, 100-year-old mail bags that were found in New York City's Grand Central Station. Dressed in authentic cowboy attire, the riders relay the bags during the ride on lengths of about a mile for each leg.
To have letters delivered via pony express, official Hashknife Pony Express envelopes are available at the Holbrook, Overgaard, Pine, Heber, Payson, Fountain Hills and Scottsdale Post Offices, selling for a dollar each.
Letters must be dropped off at any of these locations by Friday, Jan. 24. Letters will be hand-stamped by the riders with the official "Via Pony Express," a desirable cachet for stamp collectors all around the world.