Born: 1845 in Ohio
Died: April 9, 1930, St. Joseph Missouri
John Phillip Koerner is one of the five Pony Express riders buried in St. Joseph.
Koerner's parents brought him to St. Joseph when he was about seven. His father was worked as a sub-contractor in the construction of the Hannibal - St. Joseph Railroad. At an early age - possibly 13, Koerner worked as a bullwhacker for Majors, hauling government supplies to Denver.
At age 15, he was a Pony Express relief rider out of St. Joseph. He said he filled in for Johnny Fry.
Later, he was a scout for the Union Army during the Civil War and also during an army expedition to the Black Hills. After his trail days, Koerner was a carpenter who built coaches for the Hannibal-St. Joseph and the Burlington & Quincy Railroads.
Thanks to Jackie Lewin, Curator, St. Joseph Museum, for providing this information
The five Pony Express riders buried in St. Joseph are:
Charles Cliff at Mount Mora Cemetery
James W. Brink at Mount Auburn Cemetery
Michael Whalen at Ashland Cemetery
John Phillip Koerner at Ashland Cemetery
Cyclone Charlie Thompson at Mount Auburn Cemetery.