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The Pony Express


The Pony Express
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 4
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   7.46

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    stagecoach, businessman, telegraph, traveled, settle, small, advertisement, form, leather, west, between, quickly, station, weather, month, country
     content words:    Pony Express, William Gwin, William H., Native Americans, Clark Expedition, Oregon Trail, California Trail, San Francisco, On April


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The Pony Express
By Elaine Nick
  

1     "Wanted: young small, wiry boys to be riders for the Pony Express!" This advertisement began appearing on posters in 1859. William Gwin, a California senator, and William H. Russell, a Missouri businessman, worked together to form the Pony Express. They wanted small, "wiry" boys so the horses could go faster. Riders were told that the trip would be filled with dangers from the weather, animals, snakes, robbers, and Native Americans.
 
2     After the Lewis and Clark Expedition, pioneers began to move west to settle. Many pioneers traveled on the Oregon Trail and California Trail to Sacramento, California. The only way to send messages and letters was on a stagecoach from St. Louis to San Francisco, which could take as long as three weeks. The country needed a better and faster way to get messages to families and friends.

Paragraphs 3 to 4:
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