America's Hidden History | Bronco Charlie | TBN

America's Hidden History | Bronco Charlie

Watch America's Hidden History | Bronco Charlie
October 3, 2019
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America's Hidden History

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America's Hidden History | Bronco Charlie

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  • - [Narrator] Modern historians have revised, rewritten,
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  • and even deleted entire chapters of American history.
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  • So what are we missing?
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  • What happened to the history that didn't make the books?
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  • Join historian David Barton, Tim Barton,
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  • and special guests as they uncover the facts some historians
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  • don't want you to know.
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  • This is America's Hidden History.
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  • (fast-tempo western guitar music)
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  • We're in Fort Laramie, Wyoming.
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  • Fort Laramie's one of the oldest historic sites in Wyoming.
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  • Decades before it was a territory, the fort was here.
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  • It has the oldest post office location in Wyoming.
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  • But the reason that we're looking
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  • at Fort Laramie is this is also
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  • where the Pony Express had one of its offices.
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  • And the Pony Express was a significant piece
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  • of American history.
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  • Yeah, and the reason we're actually focusing even
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  • on the Pony Express right now is
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  • because the hero for this show
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  • is a guy named Bronco Charlie.
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  • Now Bronco Charlie was one of the youngest guys
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  • and most famous guys ever to ride for the Pony Express.
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  • But to understand his story, really,
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  • we need to understand the Pony Express a little better.
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  • So back up in time.
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  • When the mail is being delivered throughout America,
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  • at that time it's being delivered stagecoach or steam ship.
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  • And so there was a group of businessmen
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  • who said you know, I think we can do this better.
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  • I think we can do it faster.
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  • And so they had a business venture saying
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  • what if we got several hundred horses,
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  • we have maybe a couple hundred stations,
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  • and they would have horses at each station?
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  • And what would happen is these stations
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  • were spaced out maybe every 15 to 20 miles,
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  • and so you run a horse as hard as you can
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  • to the next station, you swap horses,
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  • and this was their idea is if we just run horses
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  • as hard as they'll go,
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  • we probably can make the mail get there faster.
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  • So these three business guys decide,
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  • well, let's try this plan and see if it works.
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  • And they actually made a fairly good team of it,
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  • and they thought we can do this in half the time
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  • that everybody does if we can get this all put together.
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  • Well, they ended up getting over 500 horses,
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  • they had roughly 190 stations,
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  • and then put a station master at each station,
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  • and the station master was in charge
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  • of taking care of the horses at that station,
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  • of maybe having some food there
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  • so when the Pony Express rider comes up,
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  • they have some food, a horse that's ready.
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  • So they have horses, they have stations,
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  • they have station masters,
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  • but now they have to recruit riders.
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  • So one of the fun things from history
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  • is there's old recruiting posters from the Pony Express,
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  • and one of my favorite ones says,
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  • "Wanted, young, skinny, wiry fellows, not over 18.
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  • "Must be expert riders, willing to risk death daily.
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  • "Orphans preferred, $25 a week."
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  • Back in 1860, that's a lot of money,
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  • but it says orphans preferred.
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  • Why do you prefer orphans?
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  • Well, because we know this is dangerous,
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  • and we don't want Mom and Dad upset
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  • if you don't make it back alive.
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  • And even at that, the fact they said young,
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  • skinny, wiry fellas, why would you want that?
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  • Well, because the horse has gotta carry the mail and you,
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  • and you don't wanna run the horse out
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  • over that 15, 20 miles.
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  • So the average weight of a Pony Express rider
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  • was between 100 and 125 pounds,
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  • so it would be like today's professional jockeys.
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  • These are small guys.
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  • We know they were tough guys because
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  • of what they did along the way
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  • and fighting outlaws and fighting Indians
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  • and fighting mountain lions and bears.
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  • They were tough, tough, tough guys, but they are teenagers
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  • in the 100 to 125-pound range; it's amazing.
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  • Well, and so not only were they gonna have to be tough
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  • in the sense of fighting off things,
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  • and most Pony Express guys, they would come
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  • with their own guns, but these business guys says,
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  • there's a few things we wanna make sure they have just
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  • for the journey, so there were two things
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  • that every Pony Express rider had
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  • in addition to all of their own gear.
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  • They were all given a Bible,
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  • which actually was printed by these three business guys,
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  • which even says something of the culture of that time,
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  • that if you have some free time,
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  • what's the best thing to read?
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  • Well, we think it's the Bible.
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  • So every Pony Express rider got their own Bible.
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  • But they also were given a horn or a trumpet,
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  • and the reason was as you are riding the horse
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  • as hard as you can to the next station,
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  • when you get to where maybe you see the station
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  • off in the distance, start blowing that horn.
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  • The station master hears the horn,
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  • comes out and gets another horse ready and waiting for you.
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  • That way, when you get there, you can swap out really fast,
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  • mount on this new horse, and you are gone again.
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  • So that's something that the Bible, the trumpet, and a gun
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  • were the constant companions of these Pony Express riders.
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  • But in addition to that, they wanted you
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  • to have high character as well.
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  • So you took an oath as a Pony Express rider
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  • that you will not swear, you will not use profanity,
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  • you will not drink, you will not get in fights
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  • with other Pony Express employees.
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  • They wanted high character in the people they hired.
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  • Now the Pony Express didn't last all that long,
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  • only roughly for a year and a half because,
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  • at this point, you have the expansion of the telegraph.
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  • In DC, the federal government says we got a great idea.
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  • We've got telegraphs that goes partway across the country.
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  • Why don't we connect the telegraph all the way
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  • to the West Coast, and that way we can get news
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  • and message all the way east to west?
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  • 10 days after the Pony Express starts,
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  • they start building the transcontinental telegraph.
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  • When they finally got it finished in San Francisco,
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  • on the day that that first message went
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  • from East Coast to West Coast,
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  • that's the last run of the Pony Express.
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  • So the Pony Express lasted about a year and a half,
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  • but what they did in that period of time
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  • was absolutely remarkable.
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  • And the reason this matters for our story
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  • is because the hero of our story is Bronco Charlie.
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  • But his adventure starts when he's just a kid.
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  • (dramatic, intense instrumental music)
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  • (fast-tempo western guitar music)
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  • We're in Cody, Wyoming.
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  • Behind us is a statue of a Pony Express rider.
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  • Now the Pony Express trail actually came not too far
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  • from this area of Wyoming, but this is
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  • where our story takes a little bit of a twist
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  • because of the individual who is a part
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  • of the Pony Express, Bronco Charlie.
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  • Now he's the hero of this show,
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  • but Bronco Charlie's story really does start much younger
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  • when his family comes to California.
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  • They're living out in the frontier, that kind of lifestyle.
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  • There were vaqueros who would ride by,
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  • and he said the vaqueros were the best-looking thing around.
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  • Well, when he was eight years old, he talked two vaqueros
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  • into taking him to their ranch.
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  • The ranch owner writes his parents a letter
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  • and says hey, I've got your son.
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  • We're gonna take care of him.
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  • It's no big deal for us, we got him.
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  • Well, all he wanted to do-- Now, wait a minute.
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  • How parents today are gonna say,
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  • oh, he's eight years old, you got him, that's fine.
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  • I don't even know you, don't know who you are.
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  • Well, so eight years old, he decides I just
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  • wanna live here and work with the horses.
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  • And so the vaqueros, he says they teach him
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  • how to shoot, they teach him how to use a lariat,
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  • they teach him how to really ride a horse,
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  • but all he wants to do is break the wild horses.
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  • And he explained they get this horse,
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  • they put a blindfold on him, they get a saddle on him,
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  • they get Bronco Charlie up on it.
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  • Well, when they think he's got the hang of it,
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  • they turn him loose, and the horse just takes off.
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  • Well, as the horse is running,
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  • it steps in a gopher hole, the horse falls, he flies off.
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  • He says it hurts so bad, but I knew I'm not supposed
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  • to let go of the reins, so he's on the ground,
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  • holding the reins. He says the horse was bigger than me.
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  • No eight year old could handle it.
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  • It's pulling away, he's pulling back.
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  • Well, the vaqueros come up, and they're able
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  • to get the horse, and they help him get back up on it.
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  • Only a couple days later, the vaqueros were going out
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  • to round up more of these wild horses,
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  • and he says, I wanted to show them
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  • that I really could handle this.
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  • I really was tough.
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  • He says, so I took my lariat, and I walked into the pin
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  • where all these horses were.
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  • He says, and I was gonna get this horse named Rabbit,
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  • and I was gonna ride it by myself.
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  • He says, I caught five of the wrong horses
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  • (David laughs) before I finally
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  • caught the right horse.
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  • When the vaqueros came back and they saw
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  • what he had done, they were so impressed,
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  • well, they gave him the nickname Bronco Carlos
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  • or Bronco Charlie, which he says was a name he carried
  • 00:07:41.210 --> 00:07:44.130
  • with him the rest of his life.
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  • Well, at the age of 11, he and his dad are in town,
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  • and as they're in town, there was a horse
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  • that had come through town without a rider on it,
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  • and the horse-- And it was
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  • a Pony Express horse because of the saddle.
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  • And the assumption is that rider probably
  • 00:07:55.180 --> 00:07:57.080
  • is dead somewhere along the trail.
  • 00:07:57.080 --> 00:07:59.020
  • And so they run down to the station.
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  • The station master's there and says,
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  • I don't know what we're gonna do.
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  • We were gonna take this rider
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  • and put him on a different horse.
  • 00:08:05.130 --> 00:08:06.200
  • And Charlie says, my dad looked at me,
  • 00:08:06.200 --> 00:08:09.040
  • and we both just knew.
  • 00:08:09.040 --> 00:08:10.200
  • He says, my dad picked me up, put me on the horse,
  • 00:08:10.200 --> 00:08:13.290
  • and says go, son.
  • 00:08:13.290 --> 00:08:15.110
  • He says, and I just took off at a gallop
  • 00:08:15.110 --> 00:08:17.210
  • on my way to Placerville, and it's 40-something miles away.
  • 00:08:17.210 --> 00:08:20.140
  • He had to ride through the night.
  • 00:08:20.140 --> 00:08:22.000
  • He said when he was riding, he heard a mountain lion scream.
  • 00:08:22.000 --> 00:08:24.070
  • He said it was the most terrifying sound he'd heard
  • 00:08:24.070 --> 00:08:26.010
  • in his whole life.
  • 00:08:26.010 --> 00:08:27.090
  • It was like a woman was being murdered.
  • 00:08:27.090 --> 00:08:28.210
  • Well, he finally arrives at the post
  • 00:08:28.210 --> 00:08:30.260
  • at Placerville the next morning.
  • 00:08:30.260 --> 00:08:32.120
  • When he gets there, the station master looked
  • 00:08:32.120 --> 00:08:35.080
  • and had all kinds of questions.
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  • He said, you're not the normal rider.
  • 00:08:36.200 --> 00:08:38.040
  • And Charlie said, I didn't know what to tell him
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  • because nobody had even told me what to do.
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  • My dad just put me on the horse and said go.
  • 00:08:42.120 --> 00:08:44.270
  • So I told him what happened, and they said okay,
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  • you can stay here.
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  • Well, this is the beginning of his journey
  • 00:08:49.090 --> 00:08:51.030
  • with the Pony Express.
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  • But then they expanded his route,
  • 00:08:52.080 --> 00:08:54.050
  • and so he went from riding roughly 40 miles
  • 00:08:54.050 --> 00:08:56.220
  • to more than 170 miles was part of his route,
  • 00:08:56.220 --> 00:09:00.030
  • and he even acknowledged that during one of these rides,
  • 00:09:00.030 --> 00:09:03.020
  • he heard something whisking by his head.
  • 00:09:03.020 --> 00:09:05.040
  • He turned around, and he saw Indians up on a hill,
  • 00:09:05.040 --> 00:09:07.210
  • and they were shooting arrows down at him.
  • 00:09:07.210 --> 00:09:09.250
  • Well, as he's running, finally, arrows do hit him,
  • 00:09:09.250 --> 00:09:13.000
  • and he said it was at this point I thought what can I do,
  • 00:09:13.000 --> 00:09:15.030
  • and he remembered he had a gun.
  • 00:09:15.030 --> 00:09:16.180
  • So he drew his six gun, and he began firing back.
  • 00:09:16.180 --> 00:09:20.060
  • Well, he was able to maneuver and escape.
  • 00:09:20.060 --> 00:09:22.080
  • When he made it to the station, he was covered in blood.
  • 00:09:22.080 --> 00:09:24.170
  • They didn't make him keep going that night,
  • 00:09:24.170 --> 00:09:25.270
  • but the next morning, he was up to ride again.
  • 00:09:25.270 --> 00:09:28.070
  • Well, his adventure continues throughout the Pony Express.
  • 00:09:28.070 --> 00:09:30.270
  • Each time he's riding, he's got part
  • 00:09:30.270 --> 00:09:32.140
  • of the Sierra Nevadas to cross,
  • 00:09:32.140 --> 00:09:33.240
  • and that's a rugged mountain range.
  • 00:09:33.240 --> 00:09:35.110
  • And so he's going up to 170 miles by himself,
  • 00:09:35.110 --> 00:09:38.240
  • and we are still talking an 11 year old here.
  • 00:09:38.240 --> 00:09:41.030
  • But nonetheless, what he did over that period of time
  • 00:09:41.030 --> 00:09:43.090
  • is absolutely a remarkable story.
  • 00:09:43.090 --> 00:09:45.040
  • And what he accomplished
  • 00:09:45.040 --> 00:09:46.130
  • in those several months actually led to his fame
  • 00:09:46.130 --> 00:09:48.110
  • because people heard about this young boy,
  • 00:09:48.110 --> 00:09:50.130
  • and they began to write stories about him.
  • 00:09:50.130 --> 00:09:52.070
  • Now many of them were fictitious stories,
  • 00:09:52.070 --> 00:09:54.130
  • but he was a great kid to write about.
  • 00:09:54.130 --> 00:09:56.140
  • His fame really grew.
  • 00:09:56.140 --> 00:09:57.290
  • In fact, it grew so big that, in just a few years later,
  • 00:09:57.290 --> 00:10:02.020
  • because of his fame as the Pony Express,
  • 00:10:02.020 --> 00:10:03.270
  • he was going to be invited to join a pretty massive show
  • 00:10:03.270 --> 00:10:06.270
  • by Buffalo Bill.
  • 00:10:06.270 --> 00:10:08.050
  • (dramatic, intense instrumental music)
  • 00:10:08.050 --> 00:10:12.190
  • (fast-tempo western guitar music)
  • 00:10:17.290 --> 00:10:22.180
  • Behind us is the statue of Buffalo Bill.
  • 00:10:22.180 --> 00:10:24.100
  • Now Buffalo Bill was a very famous name in American history.
  • 00:10:24.100 --> 00:10:27.000
  • In fact, many movies have depicted him
  • 00:10:27.000 --> 00:10:29.060
  • as a hero or an individual in those stories.
  • 00:10:29.060 --> 00:10:31.190
  • The thing he's probably the most famous for
  • 00:10:31.190 --> 00:10:34.160
  • is a show he did called The Wild West.
  • 00:10:34.160 --> 00:10:36.290
  • As he's trying to find the right people
  • 00:10:36.290 --> 00:10:39.060
  • to be part of the show, one of the names that comes up
  • 00:10:39.060 --> 00:10:42.090
  • is someone who was very, very famous
  • 00:10:42.090 --> 00:10:44.130
  • as a young boy in the West, a Pony Express rider.
  • 00:10:44.130 --> 00:10:47.070
  • And Buffalo Bill says, well, let's show them
  • 00:10:47.070 --> 00:10:48.240
  • what the Pony Express was all about.
  • 00:10:48.240 --> 00:10:50.170
  • And so he hires a man named Bronco Charlie.
  • 00:10:50.170 --> 00:10:53.190
  • Now Bronco Charlie at this point is not a boy anymore.
  • 00:10:53.190 --> 00:10:56.190
  • He's a little bit of an older guy,
  • 00:10:56.190 --> 00:10:58.070
  • older guy only in terms of the Wild West.
  • 00:10:58.070 --> 00:11:00.150
  • He's in his 30s, roughly, now.
  • 00:11:00.150 --> 00:11:01.260
  • So he's a grownup in the West.
  • 00:11:01.260 --> 00:11:03.060
  • But in the West, that's pretty old.
  • 00:11:03.060 --> 00:11:05.090
  • 30 'cause he started busting broncs when he was eight,
  • 00:11:05.090 --> 00:11:07.190
  • and he's riding Pony Express when he's 11.
  • 00:11:07.190 --> 00:11:09.170
  • So man, when you're 30, that's really old in the West.
  • 00:11:09.170 --> 00:11:11.280
  • Well, so Bronco Charlie is part of the show.
  • 00:11:11.280 --> 00:11:14.000
  • And as being a young man who learned
  • 00:11:14.000 --> 00:11:16.030
  • to break this broncs and become a very good rider,
  • 00:11:16.030 --> 00:11:19.010
  • he's showing what does it look like
  • 00:11:19.010 --> 00:11:21.030
  • if you're a cowboy in the West,
  • 00:11:21.030 --> 00:11:22.190
  • you're working with horses, how do you actually do that?
  • 00:11:22.190 --> 00:11:24.190
  • Well, he did this in the show in the East for a while.
  • 00:11:24.190 --> 00:11:27.220
  • And they also even had, as part of the show,
  • 00:11:27.220 --> 00:11:30.100
  • well, how did the Pony Express work?
  • 00:11:30.100 --> 00:11:32.010
  • So they would have a ride come galloping into the arena,
  • 00:11:32.010 --> 00:11:34.280
  • he would jump off his horse, he would grab the mail
  • 00:11:34.280 --> 00:11:37.200
  • off the saddle, he would jump on another horse,
  • 00:11:37.200 --> 00:11:39.180
  • throw the mail up, and he'd take off,
  • 00:11:39.180 --> 00:11:41.020
  • and they'd show the exchange, how that exchange happened
  • 00:11:41.020 --> 00:11:43.050
  • from station to station to station.
  • 00:11:43.050 --> 00:11:45.030
  • They're trying to show people how the Old West really was.
  • 00:11:45.030 --> 00:11:47.240
  • And so Bronco Charlie was with the show for several years,
  • 00:11:47.240 --> 00:11:50.000
  • and the show did really, really well.
  • 00:11:50.000 --> 00:11:51.290
  • And it did so well, they said, hey,
  • 00:11:51.290 --> 00:11:53.180
  • if people in the East like this,
  • 00:11:53.180 --> 00:11:54.270
  • why don't we go further east?
  • 00:11:54.270 --> 00:11:56.040
  • Let's go to Europe and show those folks
  • 00:11:56.040 --> 00:11:58.100
  • what the Old West was like because, even in Europe,
  • 00:11:58.100 --> 00:12:00.260
  • the stories about the Wild West and the Old West
  • 00:12:00.260 --> 00:12:02.190
  • and what we don't hear, it was legendary in Europe.
  • 00:12:02.190 --> 00:12:05.170
  • And so they end up in Europe,
  • 00:12:05.170 --> 00:12:07.000
  • and it's a real hit in Europe as well.
  • 00:12:07.000 --> 00:12:08.290
  • Well, and in Europe, they feel like they're very advanced,
  • 00:12:08.290 --> 00:12:11.130
  • they're sophisticated, that the Wild West,
  • 00:12:11.130 --> 00:12:13.210
  • those guys are backwards.
  • 00:12:13.210 --> 00:12:15.050
  • And so one of the fun things that happened while they
  • 00:12:15.050 --> 00:12:17.040
  • were over in Europe was there was a bicycle race,
  • 00:12:17.040 --> 00:12:20.270
  • but it wasn't just a normal bicycle race.
  • 00:12:20.270 --> 00:12:23.000
  • - [David] So they actually set up a race
  • 00:12:23.000 --> 00:12:24.280
  • between bicycles and between Bronco Charlie.
  • 00:12:24.280 --> 00:12:27.220
  • The race is for six days.
  • 00:12:27.220 --> 00:12:29.140
  • For six days, you're watching a bike
  • 00:12:29.140 --> 00:12:32.130
  • and a horse go in circles!
  • 00:12:32.130 --> 00:12:34.130
  • Now, I gotta say, there's not a horse
  • 00:12:34.130 --> 00:12:35.280
  • that's gonna last six days on a gallop against a bicycle.
  • 00:12:35.280 --> 00:12:38.260
  • So Bronco Charlie had to change horses 53 times
  • 00:12:38.260 --> 00:12:42.030
  • during that race.
  • 00:12:42.030 --> 00:12:43.150
  • He used 53 different horses, and he won the race
  • 00:12:43.150 --> 00:12:46.060
  • with a two-mile advantage over the other guys.
  • 00:12:46.060 --> 00:12:48.210
  • They were still two miles behind in laps
  • 00:12:48.210 --> 00:12:50.220
  • when he crossed the finish line.
  • 00:12:50.220 --> 00:12:52.070
  • So actually, the old technology really
  • 00:12:52.070 --> 00:12:54.110
  • is pretty good against the new stuff.
  • 00:12:54.110 --> 00:12:55.240
  • (dramatic, intense instrumental music)
  • 00:12:55.240 --> 00:13:00.140
  • (fast-tempo western guitar music)
  • 00:13:05.250 --> 00:13:09.290
  • After the Wild West show, Bronco Charlie retires
  • 00:13:14.260 --> 00:13:17.030
  • from what he considered public life
  • 00:13:17.030 --> 00:13:18.190
  • where'd he'd been in the public eye for so many years.
  • 00:13:18.190 --> 00:13:20.250
  • And so he actually comes out,
  • 00:13:20.250 --> 00:13:22.060
  • and he lives on a farm, on a ranch.
  • 00:13:22.060 --> 00:13:24.090
  • He retires at this point; he's roughly 44 years old.
  • 00:13:24.090 --> 00:13:27.090
  • He has a wife, they have three kids,
  • 00:13:27.090 --> 00:13:29.150
  • and he's just living a normal life as a cowboy.
  • 00:13:29.150 --> 00:13:32.180
  • Well, he goes to town on occasion,
  • 00:13:32.180 --> 00:13:34.030
  • and actually he said one day he was going to town,
  • 00:13:34.030 --> 00:13:36.000
  • and the Salvation Army Hall was there.
  • 00:13:36.000 --> 00:13:38.060
  • And the Salvation Army was an organization largely trying
  • 00:13:38.060 --> 00:13:41.070
  • to reach the souls of the lost, if you will.
  • 00:13:41.070 --> 00:13:44.060
  • And he decided to go and sit in one of their halls,
  • 00:13:44.060 --> 00:13:46.060
  • and he sat in the back, and people saw him there,
  • 00:13:46.060 --> 00:13:49.010
  • and they actually accused him of being a sinner.
  • 00:13:49.010 --> 00:13:51.180
  • And that didn't sit well with him, and he was very offended.
  • 00:13:51.180 --> 00:13:54.010
  • And he got up, and he left.
  • 00:13:54.010 --> 00:13:55.130
  • Well, he actually wrote in a letter,
  • 00:13:55.130 --> 00:13:57.040
  • and he said that his son was sleeping.
  • 00:13:57.040 --> 00:13:59.050
  • His son wakes up screaming, and he and his wife get up,
  • 00:13:59.050 --> 00:14:01.250
  • and they run to see what's wrong with his son.
  • 00:14:01.250 --> 00:14:04.020
  • And he says, I had a dream, Daddy,
  • 00:14:04.020 --> 00:14:06.040
  • that the devil had you, and he burned you up.
  • 00:14:06.040 --> 00:14:08.250
  • And he said that that really made him think.
  • 00:14:08.250 --> 00:14:11.090
  • Very shortly after that, his son got sick,
  • 00:14:11.090 --> 00:14:15.100
  • and it was described from Bronco Charlie
  • 00:14:15.100 --> 00:14:18.010
  • as black diphtheria.
  • 00:14:18.010 --> 00:14:19.170
  • And actually, the son wasn't the only one that got sick.
  • 00:14:19.170 --> 00:14:21.260
  • All three of his kids got sick, and then his wife got sick.
  • 00:14:21.260 --> 00:14:24.030
  • In fact, when they called for the doctor,
  • 00:14:24.030 --> 00:14:25.230
  • the doctor recognizes this, it's like a plague,
  • 00:14:25.230 --> 00:14:28.120
  • and so the doctor says you need to stay in your house.
  • 00:14:28.120 --> 00:14:30.180
  • They put a quarantine on the house.
  • 00:14:30.180 --> 00:14:31.280
  • Nobody in the family could leave.
  • 00:14:31.280 --> 00:14:33.090
  • It wasn't long after that all three
  • 00:14:33.090 --> 00:14:35.090
  • of Bronco Charlie's kids died.
  • 00:14:35.090 --> 00:14:37.070
  • They all succumbed to black diphtheria.
  • 00:14:37.070 --> 00:14:39.100
  • He was torn up, he was devastated.
  • 00:14:39.100 --> 00:14:41.110
  • His wife was still sick.
  • 00:14:41.110 --> 00:14:42.210
  • He thought he was losing his wife, too.
  • 00:14:42.210 --> 00:14:44.080
  • He says he just cursed God, was so frustrated,
  • 00:14:44.080 --> 00:14:47.090
  • couldn't understand why this was happening.
  • 00:14:47.090 --> 00:14:49.020
  • Well, his wife gets better,
  • 00:14:49.020 --> 00:14:50.250
  • the quarantine is finally lifted on his home,
  • 00:14:50.250 --> 00:14:53.170
  • and so he decides he's gonna return
  • 00:14:53.170 --> 00:14:55.210
  • to town and actually go to the bar.
  • 00:14:55.210 --> 00:14:57.060
  • He's gonna try to drown out his sorrows with alcohol.
  • 00:14:57.060 --> 00:14:59.240
  • And as he goes to the bar, he hears the Salvation Army Band
  • 00:14:59.240 --> 00:15:03.000
  • playing, and he decides to stop and listen.
  • 00:15:03.000 --> 00:15:05.160
  • He heard the songs they were playing,
  • 00:15:05.160 --> 00:15:07.130
  • he heard people speaking, and he was so convicted,
  • 00:15:07.130 --> 00:15:10.010
  • he decided, he said, I had to give my life to God.
  • 00:15:10.010 --> 00:15:12.070
  • He says, so then and there, I gave my life to God,
  • 00:15:12.070 --> 00:15:14.280
  • which is a really neat redemption testimony for him.
  • 00:15:14.280 --> 00:15:18.230
  • Actually, he says that he was so passionate
  • 00:15:18.230 --> 00:15:21.140
  • that he began traveling and telling people the gospel.
  • 00:15:21.140 --> 00:15:24.120
  • Well, he was in a town, and he was sharing the gospel,
  • 00:15:24.120 --> 00:15:26.250
  • and he said really, I didn't know what to say.
  • 00:15:26.250 --> 00:15:28.280
  • I didn't know much, but I knew that Jesus had saved me,
  • 00:15:28.280 --> 00:15:31.290
  • and I knew that all that called
  • 00:15:31.290 --> 00:15:33.220
  • upon the name of the Lord could be saved.
  • 00:15:33.220 --> 00:15:35.260
  • He said, but a pastor came to me and said Charlie,
  • 00:15:35.260 --> 00:15:38.130
  • you might need to reconsider this whole preaching thing.
  • 00:15:38.130 --> 00:15:41.100
  • He says, your life has been so rough,
  • 00:15:41.100 --> 00:15:43.190
  • you might not be the best example to tell people the gospel
  • 00:15:43.190 --> 00:15:46.200
  • because of how much you've been a bad guy,
  • 00:15:46.200 --> 00:15:49.160
  • essentially is what the pastor says.
  • 00:15:49.160 --> 00:15:51.030
  • Charlies says the zeal for the Lord,
  • 00:15:51.030 --> 00:15:53.040
  • at that point, really, really died in me.
  • 00:15:53.040 --> 00:15:55.110
  • I've never felt as passionate as I did then,
  • 00:15:55.110 --> 00:15:57.090
  • which is really a sad thing for a pastor
  • 00:15:57.090 --> 00:15:59.010
  • to say. Yeah, what a sad thing.
  • 00:15:59.010 --> 00:16:00.140
  • Right?
  • 00:16:00.140 --> 00:16:01.190
  • That's the whole gospel message, right,
  • 00:16:01.190 --> 00:16:03.120
  • is that God can reach you and redeem you.
  • 00:16:03.120 --> 00:16:05.160
  • Well, nonetheless, Charlie does come to the Lord,
  • 00:16:05.160 --> 00:16:08.110
  • and so he and his wife were now living back on the farm.
  • 00:16:08.110 --> 00:16:10.290
  • When he's 67 years old, World War I breaks out.
  • 00:16:10.290 --> 00:16:13.220
  • Now, Charlie's been an adventure guy his whole life.
  • 00:16:13.220 --> 00:16:17.020
  • He decides he's gonna go on this adventure of World War I.
  • 00:16:17.020 --> 00:16:20.060
  • He goes and signs up at the US recruiting office,
  • 00:16:20.060 --> 00:16:22.250
  • except, like a recruiting office
  • 00:16:22.250 --> 00:16:24.170
  • would tell a 67-year-old today,
  • 00:16:24.170 --> 00:16:26.110
  • they said sir, you're a little too old.
  • 00:16:26.110 --> 00:16:29.070
  • Sorry, we're not gonna be able to let you enlist.
  • 00:16:29.070 --> 00:16:32.010
  • Well, he was so disappointed and frustrated,
  • 00:16:32.010 --> 00:16:34.010
  • one of his friends found out Canada actually took people
  • 00:16:34.010 --> 00:16:36.270
  • up to the age of 44, and Charlie thought I
  • 00:16:36.270 --> 00:16:39.090
  • can tell them I'm 44.
  • 00:16:39.090 --> 00:16:40.210
  • He got on his horse, and he rode to Canada.
  • 00:16:40.210 --> 00:16:43.020
  • He tells them he's 44 and he wants to fight.
  • 00:16:43.020 --> 00:16:45.180
  • The Canadian military signed him up.
  • 00:16:45.180 --> 00:16:47.270
  • He fought for two years in World War I
  • 00:16:47.270 --> 00:16:50.000
  • in the Canadian military.
  • 00:16:50.000 --> 00:16:51.140
  • At one point, he says he finally told his commanding officer
  • 00:16:51.140 --> 00:16:53.210
  • he actually was a bit older than 44.
  • 00:16:53.210 --> 00:16:55.200
  • At that point, he's 69, he finally retires
  • 00:16:55.200 --> 00:16:58.110
  • from World War I. And by the way,
  • 00:16:58.110 --> 00:16:59.170
  • some of the guys who fought with him said he
  • 00:16:59.170 --> 00:17:01.080
  • was so good at telling stories 'cause he
  • 00:17:01.080 --> 00:17:03.090
  • would go back and tell them about the Wild West
  • 00:17:03.090 --> 00:17:05.100
  • and tell them about the things he'd done.
  • 00:17:05.100 --> 00:17:06.200
  • And they said he so entertained us,
  • 00:17:06.200 --> 00:17:09.000
  • there they are on the front and fighting,
  • 00:17:09.000 --> 00:17:10.180
  • he even showed us tricks he could do with a horse
  • 00:17:10.180 --> 00:17:12.160
  • 'cause they're still using horses in World War I.
  • 00:17:12.160 --> 00:17:14.170
  • And he did, he entertained the troops
  • 00:17:14.170 --> 00:17:15.290
  • by horse tricks, which you can imagine, right?
  • 00:17:15.290 --> 00:17:18.160
  • This is a cowboy.
  • 00:17:18.160 --> 00:17:19.230
  • Eight years old, he's already doing things
  • 00:17:19.230 --> 00:17:21.030
  • on a horse, he's learning tricks,
  • 00:17:21.030 --> 00:17:22.220
  • and the stories he has to know
  • 00:17:22.220 --> 00:17:25.090
  • from the things he did with Buffalo Bill
  • 00:17:25.090 --> 00:17:26.240
  • to the Pony Express, really some amazing things in his life.
  • 00:17:26.240 --> 00:17:30.020
  • Well, when 69 finally hits, he retires,
  • 00:17:30.020 --> 00:17:32.210
  • comes back home, and he does settle back down
  • 00:17:32.210 --> 00:17:35.060
  • on his ranch, which one of the things,
  • 00:17:35.060 --> 00:17:36.230
  • it's pretty cool he says, and we don't know exactly
  • 00:17:36.230 --> 00:17:39.030
  • what year is this happened.
  • 00:17:39.030 --> 00:17:40.180
  • But he says that God gave him and his wife two more kids,
  • 00:17:40.180 --> 00:17:43.140
  • and God restored that to him,
  • 00:17:43.140 --> 00:17:45.180
  • which is a really neat testimony.
  • 00:17:45.180 --> 00:17:47.040
  • Now at this point, he's 69, but his story's not done.
  • 00:17:47.040 --> 00:17:50.130
  • (mid-tempo, jazzy big band music)
  • 00:17:50.130 --> 00:17:54.180
  • Hi, I'm down at the WallBuilders collection,
  • 00:18:03.240 --> 00:18:05.270
  • going through our icons,
  • 00:18:05.270 --> 00:18:07.050
  • doing some digging on Bronco Charlie.
  • 00:18:07.050 --> 00:18:09.030
  • And actually, we have a couple of original artifacts
  • 00:18:09.030 --> 00:18:11.180
  • from the Pony Express and Bronco Charlie himself.
  • 00:18:11.180 --> 00:18:14.110
  • So what I have here, this is an original Bible
  • 00:18:14.110 --> 00:18:17.050
  • from the Pony Express.
  • 00:18:17.050 --> 00:18:18.050
  • It was given by the owners,
  • 00:18:18.050 --> 00:18:20.000
  • it's got their names on the front of it,
  • 00:18:20.000 --> 00:18:21.140
  • to every single one of the riders.
  • 00:18:21.140 --> 00:18:23.150
  • And what's awesome about this is they made it small
  • 00:18:23.150 --> 00:18:25.240
  • and compact so that the riders
  • 00:18:25.240 --> 00:18:27.100
  • could carry it with them so that they could refer to it
  • 00:18:27.100 --> 00:18:29.140
  • while they're doing this dangerous job.
  • 00:18:29.140 --> 00:18:31.210
  • It's a really cool, leather-bound, neat artifact.
  • 00:18:31.210 --> 00:18:35.120
  • And additionally, over here,
  • 00:18:35.120 --> 00:18:37.270
  • we've got the only surviving letter from Bronco Charlie.
  • 00:18:37.270 --> 00:18:42.120
  • So this is actually from his later years.
  • 00:18:42.120 --> 00:18:44.090
  • He's writing to a close friend of his
  • 00:18:44.090 --> 00:18:46.030
  • about his conversion to Christianity.
  • 00:18:46.030 --> 00:18:48.200
  • So it walks through how he wasn't saved
  • 00:18:48.200 --> 00:18:51.180
  • and then he had this transformative experience,
  • 00:18:51.180 --> 00:18:53.170
  • and he actually became something
  • 00:18:53.170 --> 00:18:55.020
  • of a minister of the gospel, something almost
  • 00:18:55.020 --> 00:18:57.090
  • like a cowboy pastor, even.
  • 00:18:57.090 --> 00:18:59.010
  • And he writes to his friend, and he says,
  • 00:18:59.010 --> 00:19:01.060
  • "I'm sorry to say a preacher who, mind you,
  • 00:19:01.060 --> 00:19:03.200
  • "told me that I was unlearned,
  • 00:19:03.200 --> 00:19:05.210
  • "and I went home and never preached again."
  • 00:19:05.210 --> 00:19:09.030
  • Bronco Charlie was basically the biggest celebrity
  • 00:19:09.030 --> 00:19:11.230
  • of the time back then, and to have a pastor come up
  • 00:19:11.230 --> 00:19:14.270
  • and tell him you probably shouldn't be preaching
  • 00:19:14.270 --> 00:19:17.010
  • because you know you didn't go to school
  • 00:19:17.010 --> 00:19:18.130
  • for it is crazy to think about.
  • 00:19:18.130 --> 00:19:20.110
  • But it's really neat and really captures a lot of his story.
  • 00:19:20.110 --> 00:19:23.230
  • And over here, we've got some awesome
  • 00:19:23.230 --> 00:19:26.120
  • and really colorful, really cool-looking comic books
  • 00:19:26.120 --> 00:19:29.240
  • and kids' books about the Pony Express,
  • 00:19:29.240 --> 00:19:32.170
  • and it shows how big of an impact this had
  • 00:19:32.170 --> 00:19:34.280
  • on the American imagination.
  • 00:19:34.280 --> 00:19:36.140
  • Every boy growing up wanted to be a Pony Express rider,
  • 00:19:36.140 --> 00:19:38.250
  • so they started doing this, and it shows the Pony Express
  • 00:19:38.250 --> 00:19:41.190
  • was such a big, impactful moment in American history,
  • 00:19:41.190 --> 00:19:44.140
  • and Bronco Charlie one of the most famous riders.
  • 00:19:44.140 --> 00:19:46.270
  • (dramatic, intense instrumental music)
  • 00:19:46.270 --> 00:19:51.140
  • (fast-tempo western guitar music)
  • 00:19:56.250 --> 00:20:00.290
  • We're standing in front of a Pony Express marker,
  • 00:20:06.060 --> 00:20:07.270
  • and this is actually where a station stop used
  • 00:20:07.270 --> 00:20:10.030
  • to be along the Pony Express route,
  • 00:20:10.030 --> 00:20:11.140
  • right along the Oregon Trail.
  • 00:20:11.140 --> 00:20:12.280
  • And the reason we're back by a Pony Express stop
  • 00:20:12.280 --> 00:20:14.260
  • is because Bronco Charlie, after his amazing adventures
  • 00:20:14.260 --> 00:20:17.130
  • throughout his life, when he's 80 years old,
  • 00:20:17.130 --> 00:20:19.240
  • actually, in his autobiography,
  • 00:20:19.240 --> 00:20:21.090
  • he said he was 81 years old, he decided he wanted
  • 00:20:21.090 --> 00:20:23.160
  • to relive the glory days of the Pony Express.
  • 00:20:23.160 --> 00:20:25.130
  • The mayor of New York found out he wants
  • 00:20:25.130 --> 00:20:26.290
  • to go on this ride, and the mayor says, well,
  • 00:20:26.290 --> 00:20:28.260
  • let me give you an official mail dispatch.
  • 00:20:28.260 --> 00:20:30.230
  • And it was really just a letter,
  • 00:20:30.230 --> 00:20:32.080
  • but it was a letter to the mayor of San Francisco.
  • 00:20:32.080 --> 00:20:34.260
  • And so Bronco Charlie gets on his horse,
  • 00:20:34.260 --> 00:20:36.270
  • he goes to New York City, he gets a letter from the mayor,
  • 00:20:36.270 --> 00:20:39.230
  • and then he rides his horse from New York City all the way
  • 00:20:39.230 --> 00:20:42.090
  • to San Francisco, California.
  • 00:20:42.090 --> 00:20:44.000
  • This is an 81-year-old man, mind you.
  • 00:20:44.000 --> 00:20:45.270
  • Now when the Pony Express was in action,
  • 00:20:45.270 --> 00:20:47.280
  • they would go 10 or 15 miles,
  • 00:20:47.280 --> 00:20:49.180
  • and they would swap out a horse.
  • 00:20:49.180 --> 00:20:51.030
  • That's when the next station was.
  • 00:20:51.030 --> 00:20:52.150
  • Well, this is not back in the 1860s anymore.
  • 00:20:52.150 --> 00:20:56.090
  • This is now roughly 1930s, and so,
  • 00:20:56.090 --> 00:20:59.110
  • to do this in the 1930s, he's not able
  • 00:20:59.110 --> 00:21:01.150
  • to swap out his horse along the way.
  • 00:21:01.150 --> 00:21:03.090
  • He's on one horse riding from New York all the way
  • 00:21:03.090 --> 00:21:06.150
  • to California.
  • 00:21:06.150 --> 00:21:07.230
  • It took him seven months to make this journey.
  • 00:21:07.230 --> 00:21:10.080
  • But as he was coming to towns, people knew who he was.
  • 00:21:10.080 --> 00:21:12.200
  • He was a famous guy, so, as he would come to town,
  • 00:21:12.200 --> 00:21:15.110
  • the people would line the streets of the towns.
  • 00:21:15.110 --> 00:21:17.050
  • They would cheer for him as he would come by.
  • 00:21:17.050 --> 00:21:19.090
  • One reporter actually said by the time he made it
  • 00:21:19.090 --> 00:21:21.080
  • to California, he had killed 27 rattlesnakes
  • 00:21:21.080 --> 00:21:24.060
  • because, well, what do cowboys do?
  • 00:21:24.060 --> 00:21:25.250
  • You carry your gun, you see a rattlesnake,
  • 00:21:25.250 --> 00:21:27.240
  • and you just shoot it.
  • 00:21:27.240 --> 00:21:29.100
  • He's total cowboy.
  • 00:21:29.100 --> 00:21:30.240
  • Well, he makes this last ride seven months of a ride.
  • 00:21:30.240 --> 00:21:34.080
  • He delivers this letter in San Francisco
  • 00:21:34.080 --> 00:21:36.170
  • to great fanfare, people were celebrating,
  • 00:21:36.170 --> 00:21:39.030
  • and now he's had this great adventure,
  • 00:21:39.030 --> 00:21:41.000
  • so he can finally go back and settle down
  • 00:21:41.000 --> 00:21:43.050
  • and retire once again except World War II breaks out.
  • 00:21:43.050 --> 00:21:47.090
  • And just like in World War I where he says
  • 00:21:47.090 --> 00:21:49.030
  • I wanna be involved, I wanna fight,
  • 00:21:49.030 --> 00:21:51.000
  • I want a piece of the action,
  • 00:21:51.000 --> 00:21:52.090
  • now the recruiting office said sir,
  • 00:21:52.090 --> 00:21:54.240
  • you're a little older than what we're looking for.
  • 00:21:54.240 --> 00:21:57.190
  • But it was reported that he actually
  • 00:21:57.190 --> 00:22:00.080
  • was recognized as being this famous guy,
  • 00:22:00.080 --> 00:22:02.150
  • and he was asked to come be part of the fundraising efforts,
  • 00:22:02.150 --> 00:22:06.050
  • some of these big rallies they would do to raise funds.
  • 00:22:06.050 --> 00:22:08.150
  • It was reported not only did he show up,
  • 00:22:08.150 --> 00:22:10.080
  • but he rode his horse to the event
  • 00:22:10.080 --> 00:22:12.080
  • because what do cowboys do?
  • 00:22:12.080 --> 00:22:13.130
  • They ride horses; that's just what you do.
  • 00:22:13.130 --> 00:22:15.240
  • Well, that's when he's 92 years old.
  • 00:22:15.240 --> 00:22:17.230
  • He actually was interviewed by a reporter
  • 00:22:17.230 --> 00:22:19.150
  • when he was 100 years old.
  • 00:22:19.150 --> 00:22:20.210
  • It was just days before his 101st birthday.
  • 00:22:20.210 --> 00:22:23.060
  • And when he was interviewed,
  • 00:22:23.060 --> 00:22:24.210
  • the reporter asked him a very interesting question.
  • 00:22:24.210 --> 00:22:26.060
  • They said, Bronco Charlie, in all the things you've done,
  • 00:22:26.060 --> 00:22:29.020
  • 100 years of life, do you have any regret?
  • 00:22:29.020 --> 00:22:32.030
  • And that's an interesting question
  • 00:22:32.030 --> 00:22:33.190
  • to ask a cowboy with all the things he's done,
  • 00:22:33.190 --> 00:22:36.130
  • on the Pony Express, being a part of Buffalo Bill,
  • 00:22:36.130 --> 00:22:40.000
  • his kids that died, and then he's part of World War I,
  • 00:22:40.000 --> 00:22:43.080
  • and then he has this amazing ride again as an 81 year old,
  • 00:22:43.080 --> 00:22:46.020
  • and then World War II, he's helping raise money.
  • 00:22:46.020 --> 00:22:48.020
  • He's done a lot of stuff in his life.
  • 00:22:48.020 --> 00:22:50.030
  • The reporter asked do you have any regrets.
  • 00:22:50.030 --> 00:22:51.250
  • He answers and says the only regret I have right now
  • 00:22:51.250 --> 00:22:54.170
  • is that I can't be with my brothers
  • 00:22:54.170 --> 00:22:55.240
  • in Korea as they're fighting this war.
  • 00:22:55.240 --> 00:22:57.200
  • Well, it was the middle of the Korean War,
  • 00:22:57.200 --> 00:22:59.200
  • and this 100 year old's only regret
  • 00:22:59.200 --> 00:23:01.230
  • is that he can't go fight war,
  • 00:23:01.230 --> 00:23:03.160
  • which is an amazing thing to tell about him.
  • 00:23:03.160 --> 00:23:05.050
  • Actually, he told the reporter, he said I don't know
  • 00:23:05.050 --> 00:23:06.290
  • why they won't take me.
  • 00:23:06.290 --> 00:23:08.140
  • I can still ride a horse now as good as I ever could.
  • 00:23:08.140 --> 00:23:10.190
  • In fact, I can take a bullwhip at 28 feet.
  • 00:23:10.190 --> 00:23:13.010
  • I can crack a cigarette in half.
  • 00:23:13.010 --> 00:23:14.230
  • I could still be useful.
  • 00:23:14.230 --> 00:23:16.200
  • Well, this is one of the last reports about Bronco Charlie.
  • 00:23:16.200 --> 00:23:19.200
  • He died when he was 105 years old.
  • 00:23:20.250 --> 00:23:23.090
  • Now 105 is amazing even for us today.
  • 00:23:23.090 --> 00:23:26.190
  • But when he died, he was the last Pony Express rider
  • 00:23:26.190 --> 00:23:29.140
  • that was still alive, so there was some celebration
  • 00:23:29.140 --> 00:23:32.080
  • of his life at that moment.
  • 00:23:32.080 --> 00:23:33.250
  • But even though today we can look back
  • 00:23:33.250 --> 00:23:35.130
  • and see the amazing things he's done,
  • 00:23:35.130 --> 00:23:37.070
  • he's a hidden figure in much of our history
  • 00:23:37.070 --> 00:23:39.270
  • because today, most people don't know his story
  • 00:23:39.270 --> 00:23:42.030
  • and haven't heard about him.
  • 00:23:42.030 --> 00:23:43.040
  • Bronco Charlie certainly is one
  • 00:23:43.040 --> 00:23:45.030
  • of the hidden heroes from America's history.
  • 00:23:45.030 --> 00:23:47.150
  • (gentle, pleasant acoustic guitar music)
  • 00:23:47.150 --> 00:23:52.070
  • (horse whinnies)
  • 00:23:57.120 --> 00:23:58.220
  • (chickens clucking)
  • 00:23:58.220 --> 00:24:01.240
  • Looking back on Bronco Charlie,
  • 00:24:03.030 --> 00:24:04.220
  • I think the word that stand out
  • 00:24:04.220 --> 00:24:06.090
  • to me more than anything else is expectations,
  • 00:24:06.090 --> 00:24:08.140
  • the expectations that his father had for him,
  • 00:24:08.140 --> 00:24:10.170
  • the expectations he had for himself.
  • 00:24:10.170 --> 00:24:12.180
  • Father looks at the station master
  • 00:24:12.180 --> 00:24:14.020
  • when there's nobody in the saddle
  • 00:24:14.020 --> 00:24:15.000
  • and says can anybody ride?
  • 00:24:15.000 --> 00:24:16.060
  • Yeah, just take an 11 year old in there.
  • 00:24:16.060 --> 00:24:17.260
  • Take off, kid.
  • 00:24:17.260 --> 00:24:19.080
  • Expectation is he could do it.
  • 00:24:19.080 --> 00:24:20.240
  • And then even as I look at him late in life,
  • 00:24:20.240 --> 00:24:23.160
  • golly, I'm 80 years old.
  • 00:24:23.160 --> 00:24:24.290
  • I can do this, I can cross the country.
  • 00:24:24.290 --> 00:24:27.030
  • I'm 67 years old, I can fight in World War I.
  • 00:24:27.030 --> 00:24:29.250
  • And I think that's a real good indication
  • 00:24:29.250 --> 00:24:33.150
  • of maybe where the culture has gone today,
  • 00:24:33.150 --> 00:24:35.220
  • is that we've changed what we expect we
  • 00:24:35.220 --> 00:24:37.110
  • can do for ourselves or what others expect of us,
  • 00:24:37.110 --> 00:24:40.200
  • and we just don't do as much as we used to.
  • 00:24:40.200 --> 00:24:42.070
  • Well, even the idea of expectations,
  • 00:24:42.070 --> 00:24:44.100
  • the word that I think of the most with him is grit.
  • 00:24:44.100 --> 00:24:48.010
  • For him, he was embracing the way life came,
  • 00:24:48.010 --> 00:24:51.100
  • but the way he kept going was
  • 00:24:51.100 --> 00:24:52.190
  • because he had so much courage.
  • 00:24:52.190 --> 00:24:54.020
  • The expectation was if you could, maybe you should, right?
  • 00:24:54.020 --> 00:24:57.070
  • If you have the ability, if you can do something,
  • 00:24:57.070 --> 00:25:00.080
  • well, you should go for it.
  • 00:25:00.080 --> 00:25:01.150
  • Well, think about how different we'd be today
  • 00:25:01.150 --> 00:25:02.210
  • if we blew off those expectations.
  • 00:25:02.210 --> 00:25:04.260
  • Oh, you're only 13, you can't do that.
  • 00:25:04.260 --> 00:25:06.150
  • Okay, then I won't even try.
  • 00:25:06.150 --> 00:25:08.010
  • Or you're 67, you can't.
  • 00:25:08.010 --> 00:25:09.080
  • All right, then I won't.
  • 00:25:09.080 --> 00:25:10.230
  • We respond to what somebody else's expectations are rather
  • 00:25:10.230 --> 00:25:13.100
  • than giving it the shot. Yeah.
  • 00:25:13.100 --> 00:25:14.110
  • And that's that grit.
  • 00:25:14.110 --> 00:25:15.250
  • Well, and even one of the cool things
  • 00:25:15.250 --> 00:25:17.110
  • about his life is when he has this moment
  • 00:25:17.110 --> 00:25:21.220
  • where he comes to God, and his story of faith is so unique.
  • 00:25:21.220 --> 00:25:26.000
  • But we know from studying history it
  • 00:25:26.000 --> 00:25:28.060
  • was not uncommon for guys back in that era
  • 00:25:28.060 --> 00:25:30.280
  • to have grown up with the Bible, to be familiar with God.
  • 00:25:30.280 --> 00:25:34.210
  • But it's so neat to see someone
  • 00:25:34.210 --> 00:25:36.200
  • who is as rough and as tough and as gritty as he is
  • 00:25:36.200 --> 00:25:40.250
  • to have this moment where he's drawn to God.
  • 00:25:40.250 --> 00:25:42.240
  • And certainly recognize, then,
  • 00:25:42.240 --> 00:25:44.200
  • if you're in a situation where your wife
  • 00:25:44.200 --> 00:25:46.130
  • and your kids have some kind of plague,
  • 00:25:46.130 --> 00:25:49.290
  • your house is under quarantine,
  • 00:25:49.290 --> 00:25:51.210
  • you're gonna be questioning everything.
  • 00:25:51.210 --> 00:25:54.070
  • When your kids die, it makes sense
  • 00:25:54.070 --> 00:25:56.170
  • what he was feeling in life.
  • 00:25:56.170 --> 00:25:58.090
  • It's just such a cool testimony
  • 00:25:58.090 --> 00:25:59.290
  • to see God get a hold of his life
  • 00:25:59.290 --> 00:26:02.200
  • and then he continues on with the life
  • 00:26:02.200 --> 00:26:04.090
  • with the same grit, the same courage, the same fortitude,
  • 00:26:04.090 --> 00:26:07.290
  • not this idea of the limitations culture puts on him.
  • 00:26:07.290 --> 00:26:10.270
  • It really is such a unique life
  • 00:26:10.270 --> 00:26:13.220
  • by someone who is the epitome of
  • 00:26:13.220 --> 00:26:16.200
  • what we imagine from early America.
  • 00:26:16.200 --> 00:26:18.180
  • There wasn't anything they couldn't do.
  • 00:26:18.180 --> 00:26:20.290
  • They just went for it, and they made it happen.
  • 00:26:20.290 --> 00:26:22.240
  • (dramatic, intense instrumental music)
  • 00:26:22.240 --> 00:26:27.120
  • - [Announcer] We hope you're enjoying TBN's exclusive series
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  • and unsung Americans whom God used
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