Miller’s Station – Pony Express

Miller’s station, also known as Reed’s Station is a pony express station located in Churchill County, Nevada.

Winchester Firearms adopted the image of a Pony Express Rider.
Winchester Firearms adopted the image of a Pony Express Rider.

Pony Express

Sources generally agree on the identity of this station as a C.O.C. & P.P. Express Co. station, possibly located near the area where the north and south branches of the original Pony Express and Overland Mail Company trails rejoined. Bloss lists Miller’s and Reed’s as separate stations, but other sources agree that the two names represent the same station. The station began about 1849 or 1850 as a stopping point on the California Emigrant Trail, and the Pony Express included the site as one of its original relay stations in 1860. On July 1, 1861, the station passed into the hands of G. W. Reed. Even though Reed owned the station after that date, some people knew it as Miller’s Station. On October 19, 1860, Richard Burton stopped at “Miller’s Station” for about one and one-half hours, where he and his companions had a snack and waited for a heavy rain shower to end. A letter written by an employee, C.H. Ruffing, on May 31, 1860, from Miller’s Station to W.W. Finney stated:

I have just returned from Cold Springs-was driven out by the Indians, who attacked us night before last. The men at Dry Creek Station have been killed and it is thought the Roberts Creek Station has been destroyed. The Express turned back after hearing the news from Dry Creek. Eight animals were stolen from Cold Springs on Monday. Hamilton is at the Sink of the Carson, on his way in with all the men and horses. He will get to Buckland tomorrow.

Nothing remains of the station’s structures, but a well still exists on the site.

NameMillers Station
Location Churchill County, Nevada
Latitude, Longitude
Other NamesReed’s Station
NPS Pony Express 162
Next Westbound StationDayton Station
Next Eastbound StationDesert Wells Station


Dayton Station – Pony Express

Dayton, Nevada is a small unincorporated community, and the location of the Dayton Station Pony Express stop in Lyon County, Nevada. The little town of Dayton is also Nevada State Historic Marker #7.

Union Hotel, Dayton, built in the early 1870s - Chester Barton collection
Union Hotel, Dayton, built in the early 1870s – Chester Barton collection

Many historical sources generally agree on the identity of Dayton as a Pony Express stop. In 1859 the Comstock Lode attracted 2,500 people to Dayton and made it a prosperous small town. Dayton had two Pony Express stations. The first existed in a building known as Spafford’s Hall Station, which had opened in 1851. Soon after the Pony Express began, the station moved to a new building that also housed stage activities.

When Richard Burton visited Dayton on October 19, 1860, he described a town that had already lost the gold-rush excitement of the previous year. A gravel pit now occupies the site of Spafford’s Hall Station, and the Union Hotel stands at the second Pony Express station site.

Dayton, Nevada courthouse built in 1864. - Chester Barton collection
Dayton, Nevada courthouse built in 1864. – Chester Barton collection

Dayton Map

Dayton Town Summary

NameDayton Station
LocationLyon County, Nevada
Latitude, Longitude39.2363, -119.5874
NPS Station Number163
Next Westbound StationCarson City Station
Next Eastbound StationMiller’s / Reed Station

Nevada State Historic Marker Text

Dayton, one of the earliest settlements in Nevada, was first known as a stopping place on the river for California–bound pioneers.  Coming in from the desert, they rested here before continuing westward.

In 1849, Abner Blackburn found a gold nugget at the mouth of Gold Canyon and prospecting began in the canyon to the north.  Ten years later, this led to the discovery of the fabulous ore deposits at Gold Hill and Virginia City.

Called by several different names in its early years, the place became Dayton in 1861, named in honor of John Day who laid out the town.

For many decades Dayton prospered as a mill and trading center. It remained the county seat for Lyon County until 1911.



Carson City Station – Pony Express Station

Carson City Station was a pony express station located between on Carson Street between Forth and Fifth Street in Carson City, Nevada. Founded in 1858, Carson City was was named for frontiersman, Kit Carson. The town operated as a social and supply center for the nearby mining settlements of the Comstock Lode in the mid-1800’s. In 1864 it was designated the state capital. The station is designated as a home station, where extra horses, firearms, men and provision are kept.

King Street, General View, 1880, Carson City, Carson City, NV
King Street, General View, 1880, Carson City, Carson City, NV

In 1860. the town only had one street, which is lined with a double row of saloons, a few assay offices, a general store, and the hotel. The pony express station operated out of a hotel that located between 4th and 5th Streets, near the original Ormsby House.

Pony Express

Sources generally agree on the identity of Carson City as a pony express stop. Little information is available about the Carson City Station site, which was located on what is now Carson Street between Fourth and Fifth. Bolivar Roberts, division superintendent, used site as a base in March 1860 to hire riders and station keepers. Since he worked as part of a team to build or acquire other stations along the route, Roberts also probably helped established the location.

Carson City, Nevada - 1880
Carson City, Nevada – 1880

NameCarson City Station
LocationCarson City, Nevada
Latitude, Longitude
NPS Statopm Number164
Next Westbound StationGenoa
Next Eastbound StationDayton Station


Genoa Station – Pony Express

Originally part of the Utah Territory, Genoa is a former Pony Express Station and unincorporated community in Douglas County, Nevada. The settlement was first founded in 1850 by Mormon Settlers when they founded the Mormon Station as a trading post for travelers bound for California. The original trading post operates in a roofless log enclosure built by H.S. Beatie and other Mormon settlers.

Simpson expedition, Genoa, Nevada, 1859
Simpson expedition, Genoa, Nevada, 1859

Travelers along the Carson Route to California could purchase supplies such clothing, tobacco, meat, canned goods, coffee, beans, sugar, flour and bacon. In 1852, the settlement hosts heavy emigrant traffic and a supports a post office, sawmills and blacksmith.

Pony Express

Most historical sources agree on the identity of Genoa as a station as well. However, James Pierson also identifies the site as the Old Mormon Station. The old post office also served as the station, which seems rather on point. The livery stable across the street supplied riders with fresh horses.

Much of Genoa, including the original fort, station, and hotel, was destroyed in a fire in 1910, but a replica of the fort was built in 1947. In 1976 the post office site was a vacant lot, and a picnic area occupied the livery stable location.

Nevada's first permanent building, Genoa trading post, established 1850
Nevada’s first permanent building, Genoa trading post, established 1850


Genoa is home to the oldest bar in the state of Nevada, which opened in 1853

Genoa Station Summary

NameGenoa Station
LocationDouglas County, Nevada
Latitude, Longitude39.0044, -119.8472
Other NamesMormon Station
Post Office1852 –
NewspaperTerritorial Enterprise (1858 – 1860)
NPS Station Number165
Next Westbound StationVan Sickle’s Station
Nest Eastbound StationCarson City Station


Van Sickle’s Station – Pony Express

The Van Sickle’s Station is the second Pony Express Station encountered when traveling east from Friday’s Station at the California/Nevada State Line. The Van Sickle Station is located at the bottom of Old Kingsbury Grade in Carson Valley.

Van Sickle's Station 1870
Van Sickle’s Station 1870

In 1857, rancher Henry Van Sickle built a two-story hotel to server traveler’s on their way to California. The building contained with a bar, kitchen and a store. The location is well suited as a rest stop before the climb over the high Sierra Nevada. The location served as a Pony Express in 1860, where the riders could stop to change horses. The National Park Service does not list this station on their website, so it’s active participation in the Pony Express could be in doubt. The National Pony Express Associate does list this location as a station for the pony express. This station may be on some lists as the riders would travel near the location, and it could serve as a navigation point.

Henry Van Sickle killed the outlaw and murderer Sam Brown on July 6th, 1860. Van Sickle is fully exonerated on July 8th, 1860, when the coroners jury found “Death by a just dispensation of an all-wise providence at his own expense”.

Over time, the hotel fell into disrepair and was eventually torn down in 1909.  Today, much of the history surrounding this property has been preserved in the current residence which was re-constructed in 1944 from the still standing stone store, warehouse, bar and blacksmith buildings of the original station, using the original hand-hewn beams and stone from the old quarry

Van Sickle’s Station Trail Map

Location Summary

NameVan Sickle’s Station
LocationDouglas County, Nevada
Latitude, Longitude38.9415, -119.8382
Next Westbound Station Friday’s Station
Next Eastbound StationGenoa Station