The earliest recorded settlers with their families arrived in 1851. They were: Tom and Ike Smith; J.W. Calhoun; John Prewett, who became the first schoolmaster in 1853; James Campbell; H.J. Pool; James Brooks a hunter and trapper; L. Slusser; and the Chitwood Brothers. In 1852 and 1853 new arrivals J.W. Yates, Henry White, RT Mitchell, Alexander Wilson, George Brumfield, and Robert Cunningham settled in.
In the early days, all land in the area was purchased through the land office in San Francisco - all maps were coded with degree coordinates and section numbers. Many times, all that buyers knew about their land (selling for $1.25 an acre in 1853), was whether it was on the river bottom or in the hills.
One early settler insisted on high land, having spent the better part of his life living and working swampy land. He couldn't have known, much to his descendants' dismay, that in Windsor, river bottom land was the best farmland in the county!
Henry Bell established the first mercantile store on a part of the 160 acres he purchased. He was typical of the sort of man who came to the area, in that he did lots of things well. It turns out that his 160 acres encompassed the land where Windsor now stands.
Settlers came from all over the United States, as well as Scotland, Ireland, England, Germany and France. Most lived for a time in the Eastern states before moving on to California; but they retained enough of their ethnic heritage to make early Windsor a fascinating blend of peoples and cultures.