My great-great-great-grandfather, Edwin Stratford, is an excellent candidate for this week's post. He worked diligently in several fields (including some actual fields) - I am always inspired by his accomplishments when I read about his life.
According to information recorded in newsprint and biographies by his relatives (found on FamilySearch), Edwin spent his early years working as a gardener on an estate in Maldon, Essex, England. The son of a cabinet maker, Edwin was the eldest of ten children. For a short time prior to his work as a gardener, he sold newspapers in London, while the family briefly lived there. At the age of 19, he also labored as a missionary for his church, and, after marrying in 1855, he and his wife, Marianna Crabb Stratford, emigrated to the United States. During their six-year-journey West, he performed farm labor, and earned money chopping wood. He also acted in church leadership roles and supported his growing family.
Once they arrived in Utah, in the Fall of 1861, he built a house in Farmington, for which he bartered labor for goods and materials. By 1864, he had moved his family to Cache Valley, Utah, where he built another house, and started a farm. In this community he built "canals and canyon roads." He also commenced work as a school teacher in Millville, two miles away. During this period he served as the county assessor and collector. He remained in Cache Valley until 1872.
As you can see in the above (and following) clippings from his obituary in the Ogden Daily Standard, Edwin was able to transfer his skills toward many different enterprises. But he was still just getting started!
As a gardener myself, this next paragraph warms my heart. Knowing that he carried his passion for flowers all the way from his teen years in England, to the untamed desert environs of Utah - literally making the desert bloom - brings me so much joy and connection to this man. I also love the description of his strong character at the end.
To sum it up, Edwin Stratford had the following jobs, many of them more than once:
Nice work, Grandfather Stratford.
1. "Gone to His Rest," Ogden Daily Standard (Utah), 9 October 1899, page 4; Utah Digital Newspapers (https://newspapers.lib.utah.edu : accessed 8 September 2018). All facts in this post reference information recorded in this obituary.