Pioneer Day is a state holiday in Utah; however, Mormons celebrate on July 24. Here are 10 quick facts about the holiday:

  1. Brigham Young and the pioneers arrived in Salt Lake valley July 24, 1847, which later became Pioneer Day in honor of their arrival, according to the Library of Congress website.
  2. Pioneer day was first celebrated in 1849, just two years after the pioneer’s arrival in the Salt Lake valley, with a parade, music and speeches, according to timeanddate.com.
  3. Only 5 percent of pioneers pulled handcarts. Some weeks, more people pull handcarts in trek reenactments than those in the 19th century combined, according to the Salt Lake Tribune website.
  4. Most pioneers’ deaths came from accidents or disease, not Native Americans, according to the Salt Lake Tribune website.
  5. Many pioneer children “walked and walked,” like primary children sing because it was simply safer. Inside the wagon, children would get bounced out and break a limb, according to the Salt Lake Tribune website.
  6. The pioneers were not always alone on the trek. Through Iowa, they traded with other groups of travelers. Some pioneers even raised money from a band they formed, according to the Salt Lake Tribune website.
  7. Among the items pioneers brought with them were beehives. 13 beehives began the journey, but it is up for debate how many survived the journey, according to the Salt Lake Tribune website.
  8. About 70 covered wagons made up the first wagon train to reach Utah. 148 people were part of this wagon train, according to the Deseret News website.
  9. William Clayton, part of the first wagon train to reach Utah, is credited with creating the modern odometer. Clayton got frustrated not knowing how far they were traveling each day and, with the help of Orson Pratt and Appleton Milo Harmon, created the first modern odometer to measure the distance, according to the Deseret News website.
  10. Jim Bridger, a famous mountain man, met a group of pioneers in Wyoming. When he found out they were headed to the Salt Lake basin, he promised Brigham Young $1,000 for a bushel of corn raised in the Salt Lake basin, according to the Deseret News website.