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Saturday, September 8, 2012

Pigeon Hollow

The Mail must go through.
The last two men who had carried the mail had been killed by Indians. 
Hans Jorgen Hansen said he would carry the mail.  He would do it without fail, as the mail must go through.

Hans had a fine mare.  She could outrun any horse the Indians had.  His horse had a keen instinct, she knew how to avoid any Indian ambush.
Hans told the authorities that he had a 16 year old son by the name of  Niels Peter who could ride as well as any Indian. 
They took turns carrying the mail between Ephraim and Spring City.

Most rides were uneventful as the country was wide and open in the mid 1800s, and still is.   They could see in all directions. 
But near Spring City was a place known as Pigeon Hollow.  Throughout the Hollow were clumps of sage brush and cedar trees. There was always danger of an Indian ambush.

But the faithful little mare always sensed their presence.

She would race through the Hollow.  The disappointed Indians  would come racing out from behind in hot pursuit trying to overtake them.

When Niels was far enough away from his pursuers he would rein up to a stop, turn and wave to the Indians.  The Indians too would bring their mounts to a rearing halt, brandishing their weapons.  It soon became a game. 

Pigeon Hollow road today. 

I have watched this house crumble and soon nothing will be left. 
Did Hans Jorgen and Niels Peter Hansen live here? 

Have a great week my dear
Blogging Friends.


Note:Excerpts taken from "Life under the Horseshoe" by Kaye Watson, Historian 


  1. Historical tales about a location I find very interesting and makes it difficult to forget their name: Pigeon Hollow and Gina will be bouncing around now just like those jingles on the radio or TV commercials. However, your photos (especially the overlay with the horse) are much more poetic!). Thanks, Gina.

  2. Dear Gina - I didn't realise that you lived in Cowboy and Indian Country - a wonderful journey of discovery for me around your area. Beautifully told piece of history, very atmospheric - it all looks very remote, and peaceful. Thanks Gina.

  3. Beautifully illustrated and told story of lives filled with danger.
    It always perplexes me, the strong spirit to conquer and survive in an alien place, on the one side, and the natives, fighting to survive, fearing their doom, on the other side.

    (I saw the first picture, noticed the fence, and read: The Nail must go through (country girl heart coming to the fore).

  4. Hello Gina,
    Oh, I just love this story. You have told it so well. I love how you have inserted the photos. What a shame the old Hans Jorgen and Pieters house is so neglected.
    Lots of great places to see around your area Gina. Wide open spaces. Amazing how those riders rode through Indian territory to deliver the post.
    Great post ..loved it
    wishing you a happy sunday

  5. Dear Mary, our surrounding area is steeped in history. Native Americans played an important part in it.

  6. Oh yes, Rosemary, Cowboys and Indians is what this part of the country is made of. We still have lots of wide open spaces, lots of sheep and cattle, open pasturelands and green alfalfa fields as far as the eye can see. Our natural spring is one of the largest in the area...we find evidence of Native Americans having made it a meeting place.

  7. Dear Merisi, Brigham Young insisted that his followers populate southern Utah. Still today, you will find little farm towns, each about 5 to 8 miles apart, a distance that could easily be reached in one day by horse and wagon.

  8. Dear Val, and a happy Sunday to you. We are so lucky to live in this beautiful valley where the soil is rich and where there is lots of room to spread out and live with good country folks who help each other when the need arises.

  9. Dear Gina, That is a great story, and your superimposed photographs remind me of that haunting song from the 1950s, "Ghost Riders in the Sky." A lot of people don't realize how very young people like Niels Peter and the majority of the Pony Express riders were.

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  11. Dear Mark, I remember the song. I wanted horse and rider to be ghost-like. And you are correct... even now our country boys learn how to handle heavy farm equipment by the time they are 7 or 8 years old. They are given difficult tasks at an early age even in this modern setting.

  12. Gina, great job. No, the home was not Hans Jorgen Hansen's nor his son's Niels Peter. They both lived
    in Spring City...Hans J built the original part of the home at 200 E. and 100 N by the rock on the west side of 200 E. Niels Peter's house is at 200 N. and 200 E on that corner.

  13. Thank you Kaye for sharing your considerable knowledge about our early history. With map in hand I'm going for a walk this morning.