by Wilma S. Smith and Randall A. Smith

The six foot four inch, 19 year old, wrote about his daily activities in his diary. Cultivating land near Cottonwood canyon at the foot of the Wasatch mountains in the Utah territory, he helped develop his fathers farm. Winslow was always willing to help his neighbors with heavy chores such as plowing, harrowing and harvesting. The following are excerpts from Winslow's diaries in the year 1856.

[1856, June]

Saturday 28 fine pleasant day but not quite so warm as common the wind has abated I commenced to water wheat up on the hill it looks rather heavy through the day father is watering wheat in the bottom I along with Joseph Clapp went over and stayed with William Gibson all night it was quite cool through the night

Sunday 29 the sun shown quite warm today I with Jos. Clapp Daniel Thomas went a Berrying up in Big Cottonwood Kanyon returned in the afternoon about four oclock but did not get many berrys I paid a visit to AC Miles I staid to home tonight it is rather cool.

[1856 July]

Tuesday 1 of July the sun showed a very smiling face this morning the sun was very warm in the forenoon in the afternoon the sky was cloudy a gentle breeze blowed from the south plowed out corn in the forenoon and in the afternoon I went over to George Thomson a cow and two yearlings which was taken over to a herd kept about 20 miles south of big Cottonwood the cattle was taken over to the herd on the 4th of June the heardsman brought them back on the account of a few troublesome Indians I got back from Thomson about 2 oclock pm I plowed out corn the rest of the day brother W. Casto thrashed some wheat today I stayed to home D Thomas stayed with me tonight

Wednesday 2 the sun rose clear and warm the wind from in the south news that they is 10,000 Saints that are coming on to the Valley this season grasshoppers have destroyed the crops in Cache Valley......this morning news came down by C. McIntire that my brothers wife was taken ill and nye unto death the disease is called Cholery.....Orson my cousin came down from the city to pick berrys & Br Covington has been thrashing wheat today glad to hear the hum of the machine once more.

Friday 4 the sky was quite hazy great things a going on in the City the firing of cannons and the playing of music flags were hoisted in diferent parts of the City.

Friday 11 the day was quite warm I went to work for Br Covington to thrash wheat he got done about 3 oclock wheat turned out quite well this season R Covington had 121 bushels of wheat

Tuesday 15 now and then a cloud to be seen considerable harvesting is going on in the valley This morning I went up to an Indian Camp they was very busy gathering berrys

Thursday 17 I started for the kanyon along with Daniel T Thomas we got there about 4 pm we left our waggons down to the foot of the mountain and took our oxen up to the Poles and while I was there I had one of my oxen hurt by a pole that fell across the small of his back it hurt him very bad in so much that I had to leave him by the roadside....

Saturday 19 it is quite cloudy the wind is in the south I am preparing to go to the kanyon I started about 10 am I got there at dusk the ox was worse and I concluded to kill him in the company with three others butchered him we got through about 12 pm we took the meat and put it on the wagon and brought it down to a shingle machine where we camped for the night

Monday 21 the sky was quite cloudy I spent the forenoon in taking care of the meat and borrowed a cradle to cut some oats in the afternoon I cut about ½ acre.....[a cradle is a frame attached to a scythe to catch the cut grain so it can be laid evenly] and account of the meat that we let go to different persons  

to Mr. Cooper let have 30 lbs

to Mr. Andrus let have 103 lbs

to Miss M Clapp let have 65 lbs

to Bishop E. Lee let have 13 ½ lbs

to Mr Rider let have 49 lbs

to Mr D Perkins let have 69 lbs

to Mr Norwood let have 47 3/4 lbs

(total) 377 1/4

Tuesday 22 I see some teams a going in the kanyon to spend the 24 of July and also a band of music my brother came down from Ogden and all so my mother stayed to our house

Wednesday 23 great excitement for Big Cottonwood Kanyon to spend the 24 of July they was something liek 300 wagons and carriages my father and mother and brother and wife started for the lake in Big Cottonwood

Thursday 24 I went up to the city and returned to Orson Badger at 12 pm at 1 oclock pm they is a Picnic Ward Party at the 2nd Ward schoolhouse and I dined with them at 2 after the festival was over they prepared the dance which is to be held in the evening at 5 oclock I dined at ½ past 4 had a good dinner and we all met to participate in the dance which lasted until about 1 oclock am I helped to play the fiddle.

Winslow Farr Jr Diaries