by 5:50 AM 0 COMMENTS
In Utah we celebrate two major holidays in July, the 4th and the 24th. On the 24th my home town has a parade, fireworks, and several other activities. It's been a few years since I was home for the 24th. It's one of those days that makes me think about home, and the good people there. What is this holiday all about? Let me explain.

In late July of 1847 the LDS pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley. The holiday commemorates that event, but it is also a celebration of all the pioneers who settled the Mountain West. The story of these people is the essence of everything that is good and right about America.

Most of them immigrated to the U.S. from England and the Scandinavian countries. Many left behind their family and friends in search of a better life and freedom to practice their faith. They walked the plains on foot pulling small handcarts. Many left loved ones in unmarked graves along the prairie. The original group of 1847 came fleeing religious persecution. They had been driven from place to place. The governor of Missouri even issued an extermination order, making it legal to kill a Mormon on sight. It was the other trail of tears.

After arriving in Utah, they suffered through famine and sickness, but endured. Rather than being victims of the past, they chose to look to the future, and with hard work made the desert blossom as a rose.

In recent years it has become popular to do reenactments of the pioneer trek. Fellow blogger Pedaling Fast & Trying To Keep Up, is involved in one of these treks. Like our founding fathers, we owe these pioneers so much. They made possible the settlement of the west, making America a nation that stretches from sea to shining sea.



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