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Pony Express

The Pony Express was a mail service delivering messages and mail using relays of horse-mounted riders that operated from April 3, 1860, to October 1861 between Missouri and California in the United States of America. Operated by Central Overland California and Pike's Peak Express Company, the Pony Express was a great financial investment to the U. S. During its 18 months of operation, it reduced the time for messages to travel between the Atlantic and Pacific coasts to about 10 days. Many people used the Pony Express as a communication link, it encouraged catalogues to be created, allowing people to buy goods and have them brought by horse to the customers. It became the West's most direct means of east–west communication before the transcontinental telegraph was established, was vital for tying the new U. S. state of California with the rest of the United States. The Pony Express demonstrated that a unified transcontinental system of communications could be established and operated year-round.

When replaced by the telegraph, the Pony Express became romanticized and became part of the lore of the American West. Its reliance on the ability and endurance of individual young, hardy riders and fast horses was seen as evidence of rugged American individualism of the Frontier times; the idea of a fast mail route to the Pacific coast was prompted by California's newfound prominence and its growing population. After gold was discovered there in 1848, thousands of prospectors and businessmen made their way to California, at that time a new territory of the U. S. By 1850, California entered the Union as a free state. By 1860, the population had grown to 380,000; the demand for a faster way to get the mail and other communications to and from this westernmost state became greater as the American Civil War approached. In the late 1850s, William Russell, Alexander Majors, William B. Waddell were the three founders of the Pony Express, they were in the freighting and drayage business. At the peak of the operations, they employed 6,000 men, owned 75,000 oxen, thousands of wagons and warehouses, plus a sawmill, a meatpacking plant, a bank and an insurance company.

Russell was a prominent businessman, well respected among the community. Waddell was co-owner of the firm Waddell & Co.. After Morehead was bought out and retired, Waddell merged his company with Russell's, changing the name to Waddell & Russell. In 1855 they took on a new partner, Alexander Majors, founded the company of Russell, Majors & Waddell, they held government contracts for delivering army supplies to the western frontier, Russell had a similar idea for contracts with the U. S. Government for fast mail delivery. By utilizing a short route and using mounted riders rather than traditional stagecoaches, they proposed to establish a fast mail service between St. Joseph and Sacramento, with letters delivered in 10 days, a duration many said was impossible; the initial price was set at $5 per 1⁄2 ounce $2.50, by July 1861 to $1. The founders of the Pony Express hoped to win an exclusive government mail contract, but that did not come about. Russell and Waddell organized and put together the Pony Express in two months in the winter of 1860.

The undertaking assembled 120 riders, 184 stations, 400 horses, several hundred personnel during January and February 1861. Majors was a religious man and resolved "by the help of God" to overcome all difficulties, he presented each rider with a special edition Bible and required this oath, which they were required to sign. I... do hereby swear, before the Great and Living God, that during my engagement, while I am an employee of Russell and Waddell, I will, under no circumstances, use profane language, that I will drink no intoxicating liquors, that I will not quarrel or fight with any other employee of the firm, that in every respect I will conduct myself be faithful to my duties, so direct all my acts as to win the confidence of my employers, so help me God." In 1860, there were about 186 Pony Express stations that were about 10 miles apart along the Pony Express route. At each station stop the express rider would change to a fresh horse, taking only the mail pouch called a mochila with him.

The employers stressed the importance of the pouch. They said that, if it came to be, the horse and rider should perish before the mochila did; the mochila was held in place by the weight of the rider sitting on it. Each corner had pocket. Bundles of mail were placed in these cantinas; the mochila could hold 20 pounds of mail along with the 20 pounds of material carried on the horse. Everything except one revolver and a water sack was removed, allowing for a total of 165 pounds on the horse's back. Riders, who could not weigh over 125 pounds, changed about every 75–100 miles, rode day and night. In emergencies, a given rider might ride two stages back to back, over 20 hours on a moving horse, it is unknown if riders tried crossing the Sierra Nevada in winter, but they crossed central Nevada. By 1860 there was a telegraph station in Nevada Territory; the riders received $100 a month as pay. A comparable wage for unskilled labor at the time was about $0.43–$1 per day. Alexander Majors, one of the founders of the Pony Express, had acquired more than 400 horses for the project.

He selected horses from around the west, paying an average of $200. These averaged 900 pounds each.

Auguste Tessier

Auguste Tessier was a lawyer and political figure in Quebec. He represented Rimouski in the Legislative Assembly of Quebec from 1889 to 1907 as a Liberal, he was born in Notre-Dame de Québec, Canada East, the son of Ulric-Joseph Tessier and Marguerite-Adèle Kelly, was educated at the Séminaire de Québec, the Collège Sainte-Marie de Montréal and the Université Laval. Tessier was set up practice in Rimouski. In 1878, he married Corinne Gauvreau, he was mayor of Rimouski parish from 1889 to 1890, mayor of the town of Rimouski from 1889 to 1899 and warden for Rimouski County from 1885 to 1889. He was first elected to the Quebec assembly in an 1889 by-election held following the death of Édouard-Onésiphore Martin. In 1899, he was named Queen's Counsel. Tessier served as speaker for the assembly in March 1905 and served in the provincial cabinet as Minister of Agriculture from 1905 to 1906 and as provincial treasurer from 1906 to 1907. Tessier resigned his seat in the assembly in 1907 when he was named to the Quebec Superior Court for Rimouski district and that year, for Gaspé district.

He retired from the bench in 1922. Tessier was president of the agricultural society for Rimouski County, he died in Quebec City at the age of 84. His brother Jules served in the Canadian senate, his sister Marie-Anne-Adèle married Alexandre Chauveau. His son Auguste-Maurice and his grandson Maurice served in the Quebec assembly. "Biography". Dictionnaire des parlementaires du Québec de 1792 à nos jours. National Assembly of Quebec. Roy, PG Les juges de la province de Québec p. 543

Lauaki Namulauulu Mamoe

Lauaki Namulau'ulu Mamoe was a renowned orator chief and the first leader of the Mau, a resistance movement in Samoa during colonialism. Mamoe was exiled to Saipan in 1909, he died in 1915. He was from the capital of Fa'asaleleaga political district on the island of Savai'i; the family matai chief title Namulau'ulu was from Safotulafai and the other chief title Lauaki came from Tonga. Mamoe was the first of his family to hold both the Namulauulu and the Lauaki titles, inherited through good service from the true heirs of the Namulauulu family. Uncertain of the outcome of his trial under German rule, he decided to bestow the title'Namulauulu' on his younger brother, exiled and died before being allowed to return to Samoa; the resistance movement led by Lauaki on Savai'i was called Mau a Pule which grew into the national Mau movement. The Mau a Pule represented chiefs protesting against losing their traditional Samoan authority under the colonial administration headed by German Governor Wilhelm Solf.

The Mau a Pule represented traditional Samoa with none or little European influence in its methods or organisation. Lauati depended on the chiefly elite of Savai'i to organise Mau a Pule support. Pule is the traditional designation given to the Chiefs who represent the big island of Savaii and who were affiliated with the Sa Malietoa royal family. Lauaki Namulau'ulu held the position of high talking chief for Pule when the traditional power brokers of Samoa met to determine matters of national importance. Samoa's main traditional power brokers were Tumua. Tumua being the Main Chiefs who are from the island of Upolu and who supported the royal families of Tama Aiga. Upolu is the second largest island in the Samoan archipelago; the competition and rivalry between these two powerful traditional cadres of chieftains fueled the dynamics of Samoa's traditional political structure. Lauaki and his followers were not ready to concede their authority as the decision makers for Samoa to a foreign power; this was the impetus for the Mau a Pule movement which sought to retain the authority of the Traditional political structure, based on thousands of years of historical events, cultural designations and achievements.

This indigenous structure in Lauaki's opinion, as well as many other Samoan Chiefs including Mata'afa Iosefo, who fought against foreign interference with Samoan traditional authority, was too entrenched in Samoa's cultural structure, thus it was unacceptable to Lauaki for Samoans to live in a world where the Samoan way was relegated to irrelevancy. In the first months of 1909, Governor Solf called in the military to quash Lauaki and the Mau a Pule on Savai'i. Four warships and troops from the East Asia Squadron arrived; the warships cordoned off Savai'i from Upolu. On 1 April 1909 Lauaki Mau a Pule supporters, they were trialed. On 19 April 1909, Lauaki and 71 members of the Mau a Pule were exiled to Saipan in the Mariana Islands aboard the ship SMS Jaguar; the other Mau a Pule leaders included I'iga Pisa, Asiata Tautoloa, Leiataua Mana, Namulauulu Pulali, Tuilagi Letasi. Among the exiles were women and children including Lauaki's wife Sivaotele and their only child, Tivoli. Lauaki never saw Samoa again and many of those banished died in exile.

Years some of the exiles returned to Samoa. On 18 December 1915, some of those banished returned from Saipan, they were Leiataua Mana, Taupau Pauesi and Malaeulu. The bones of Asiata Taetoloa, Letasi and members of their families who had died in Saipan were brought back. Excerpt from An Account of Samoan History up to 1918 by Samoan historian Teo Tuvale. Lauki's younger brother died in Saipan. While some of the exiles had returned to Samoa carrying the bones of those that had died on Saipan, Lauaki had fallen ill and had been forced to stop with his family on Tarawa island in the Gilbert Islands. On 15 January 1916, Lauaki's wife, their son arrived back in Samoa aboard the steamer Atua, they brought the news. After Lauaki's death and by the late 1920s, the Mau movement had gathered widespread support in Samoa. One of the Mau leaders in the 1920s was Olaf Frederick Nelson, a merchant born in Safune to a Samoan mother and Swedish father. Nelson was exiled from Samoa. Samoa gained political independence in 1962.

NZ Electronic Text Centre: "An Account of Samoa History up to 1918" by Te'o Tuvale