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Pony Express Days (1940)

A youthful Bill Cody joins the newly-formed Pony Express as a station hand and replaces the regular rider when he is shot in an Indian attack.


B. Reeves Eason


Charles L. Tedford (original screenplay)


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Complete credited cast:
George Reeves ... Bill Cody
David Bruce ... Johnny Frey
Frank Wilcox ... Bolliver Roberts
J. Farrell MacDonald ... Nevada Jim (as J. Farrell McDonald)
Joe King ... Colonel Joseph Randall (as Joseph King)
Addison Richards ... Tipton Walton


Young Bill Cody wants to be a Pony Express rider, but he's too heavy. However, he accepts a job as a station hand, hoping he'll get to ride someday. When one of the riders is shot in an Indian attack while delivering vital mail, Cody sees his chance. He takes the horse and satchel and rides on through further Indian ambushes and past a destroyed station and one with no horses. He finally reaches the telegraph station at Fort Churchill, Nevada thus helping the Pony Express deliver news of Abraham Lincoln's election in record time and ensuring California remains in the Union. After completion of the transcontinental telegraph and the demise of the Pony Express, Cody decides to go on a buffalo hunt with his former station manager, Nevada Jim, who gives him a new nickname - Buffalo Bill.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Passed | See all certifications »






Release Date:

13 July 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Buffalo Bill and the Pony Express See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Warner Bros. See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Vitaphone release #9834-9835. See more »


[last lines]
Nevada Jim: [to Johnny] I'm goin' back to huntin' buffalo where a man can use his brains. My young friend Buffalo Bill is comin' along with me.
[to Bill]
Nevada Jim: Ain't ya, huh?
Johnny Frey: [to Bill] So, you've been believin' ol' Nevady's lies all along?
Nevada Jim: Huh?
Bill Cody: [slowly repeats the new nickname to himself] Buffalo Bill Cody...
[to Johnny]
Bill Cody: It's got kind of a nice sound, doesn't it, Johnny?
See more »


Gwine to Rune All Night
(1850) (uncredited)
aka "De Camptown Races"
Written by Stephen Foster
Played as background music in St. Joseph, Missouri
See more »

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User Reviews

PONY EXPRESS DAYS (B. Reeves Eason, 1940) **1/2
19 May 2007 | by Bunuel1976See all my reviews

Included on the First Season Warners DVD of the ADVENTURES OF SUPERMAN TV series, this Technicolor Western short stars the future "Man Of Steel" himself, George Reeves, as another legendary character - "Buffalo Bill". Directed by second-unit expert B. Reeves Eason (he was responsible, among other things, for the legendary chariot race sequence in the Silent version of BEN-HUR [1925]), the film details the short-lived long-distance mail service provided by the Pony Express company. It's set immediately prior to the outbreak of the American Civil War, with the rough-riding but dedicated company employees commissioned to deliver pressing news of the delicate situation from one state to the other by horse - an arduous and risky journey which takes a number of days and necessitates them to make several stops at strategic points along the way in order to exchange horses. Invariably, they also have to contend with enemy agents determined not to allow these vital messages to go through - so that, in the meantime, agitators can insidiously work on the population of neutral states so as to rally them to their particular cause! Reeves's Bill Cody is a wannabe Pony Express rider who gets his chance when one of the men is wounded in an ambush and can't complete his journey. Intriguing, action-packed and boasting rich colors, the film is pleasant and unassuming entertainment of the kind they don't make 'em like anymore.

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