Pony Anne and the Silver Lantern Express is a fanciful historical fiction about the only female Pony Express rider. On Christmas Eve, 1860 Anne takes the reins for her injured fiancé and delivers the mail. Along the way Anne meets a helpful, but mysterious stranger named Klaus driving a sleigh across the deep snow. The stranger gives Pony Anne a magical silver lantern that helps her family through hard times for generations. Enjoy this charming Christmastime tale of: courage, dedication and love set on America’s frontier.
Amy sat down, pumped the treadle, moistened her fingers and began playing. The ethereal music, accompanied by the howling winds, swirled about the room’s environs which, illuminated by the dancing fire, were transposed into a place out of time. The glass harmonica’s peculiar vibrations seemed to set off a sympathetic feedback loop within the structure of the house as if awakening an old spirit. As Amy began her tale, she lit the recently polished silver lamp. The lamp’s silvery radiance blazed into the darkened room and lit the faces of her grandchildren.
“This is the Christmas tale of Pony Anne, the only female pony express rider…”
Although the Pony Express only operated for about nineteen months, it is one of America’s most endearing legends. The conditions of the one hundred sixty-five or so Pony Express stations varied from sod huts to military forts. The stationmasters kept the ponies in good health and had to be ready at any time to answer the call of the rider as he approached. Mabel’s great-great grandfather – Gerat North operated one of the finest Pony Express stations – Cottonwood Station west of Fort Kearney Nebraska. Gerat and his wife Sophia traded with travelers on the Overland Express and the Oregon-California Trail; and their adopted daughter – Anne helped out in the grocery store. The North’s lost their own daughter to the 1837 smallpox epidemic, and Anne’s parents had died from cholera on the Oregon Trail. In 1860 the Cottonwood Station became part of the Pony Express Route, and fourteen year old Anne was placed in charge of caring for the ponies.