Hashknife Revives Spirit of the Old West in Arizona

Winslow, AZ, City Carrier Walter Pacheco (right) hands off the mail bag to his son-in-law Dillon DeWitt.

Winslow, AZ, City Carrier Walter Pacheco (right) hands off the mail bag to his son-in-law Dillon DeWitt.

Last week, more than two dozen horseback riders, dressed in authentic western attire, took to the streets to participate in the annual Hashknife Pony Express. The ride relives the old west’s Pony Express style of mail delivery, travelling from Holbrook to Scottsdale to deliver more than 20,000 letters hand-canceled with the official ride logo by the riders.

Now in its 57th year, the annual ride originally started out as a search and rescue group formed by the Navajo County Sheriff in 1955. Two years later, the Sheriff’s Posse decided to replicate the Pony Express style of mail delivery to send an invitation to Arizona Governor Paul Fannin to attend the Hashknife Stampede in Holbrook. The Posse repeated this process of sending the annual invitation to Arizona’s governor for the next two years until Holbrook Postmaster Ernest Hulet helped the Posse acquire a contract with the Postal Service to deliver official mail. Ever since then, Posse riders are sworn in by the Holbrook Postmaster annually to carry mail along the route for the annual ride.

For the 2015 Pony Express ride, Winslow, AZ, City Carrier Walter Pacheco joined the Posse for the more than 200 mile journey to Scottsdale. During the ride, Pacheco handed off the mail bag to his son-in-law Dillon DeWitt. Pacheco also had the opportunity to carry the postal flag at the end of the ride into Fountain Hills and Scottsdale.

Hashknife 2015b

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2 Comments

  1. grannybunny

     /  February 5, 2015

    I’d like to see the Postal flag they carried at the end of the ride, if an image is available.

  2. This is SO cool! If I lived near there I sure would send something with them!

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