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Happy Holiday Weekend

July 23, 2021

Today, July 23, a holiday.

What do you mean, you’ve never heard about it? Sure, it’s probably someone’s birthday. And today is National

  • Mosquito Day
  • Vanilla Ice Cream Day
  • Peanut butter and Chocolate Day

(Seriously, who comes up with these?)

Okay. Here in Utah, businesses were closed. And they didn’t close for National Peanut Butter and Chocolate Day. It’s Pioneer Day. Actually tomorrow, July 24, is Pioneer Day. But, since it’s a state holiday, everyone had today off.

I’m not sure if I had today off or not. When you are unemployed, it’s hard to tell. I didn’t have to go to work today, so I guess I had it off. But, I spent the day studying Six Sigma concepts and looking for work, so maybe I didn’t have it off.

Pioneer Day commemorates the day in 1847 when Mormon pioneers first reached the Salt Lake City valley. If you’ve heard of Brigham Young, it was his wagon train that reached the valley on this day, tomorrow, 174 years ago.

Brother Young and his followers weren’t the first white men to visit the valley. That was Father Escalante way back on September, 1776. They weren’t even the first Americans. That would be Kit Carson and John C Fremont in the 1843-1844 expedition.

And, of course, they weren’t the first people here. That would be the native Ute Indians.

But, unlike the explorers and like the Native Americans, the Mormons came to stay. Brigham Young, who had heard about the valley from Carson declared,

This is the right place.

That has been shorted to just “this is the place” over the years.

One member of that company was a man named Thomas Woolsey. He was a soldier. He was an explorer. He was a farmer. And he built the first permanent structure in the valley. He was also my 5th great-grandfather.

So, enjoy your holiday weekend (if you’re in Utah.) Enjoy National Vanilla Ice Cream day elsewhere.

I’m ready to be done with my extended weekends.

Stay safe

Rodney M Bliss is an author, columnist and IT Consultant. His blog updates every weekday. He lives in Pleasant Grove, UT with his lovely wife, thirteen children and grandchildren.

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