The Granite Ridge Cemetery is located in Teton Village, an area once known simply as “Teton.” Little has been written about this area of the valley, it was one of the last locations to be homesteaded due to poor soils. Stories circulate about tough, rocky dry soil interspersed with swampy marshes that bred mosquitoes en-masse. The cemetery appears to have been established during the 1902 diphtheria outbreak in the valley. The number of graves is unknown, but thought to be up to three dozen individuals. The last known burial took place in 1968. Many are unmarked, and many marked with ephemeral materials like wood. The cemetery has been known by several names over the years, including Teton Community Cemetery and Crystal Springs Cemetery. One of the graves, belonging to Ellen Magnum (1879-1968), has a second gravestone in the Elliott Cemetery in Wilson. Ellen’s husband Albert died earlier in 1931, and it’s possible their children moved Albert from Granite Ridge to Elliott so they could rest together. However, leaving the original grave marker intact is unusual, and leaves no clues as to where the couple are buried today.
The most famous and least remembered occupant of the Granite Ridge Cemetery is Eliza Hubbard Waterman Seaton. A wooden marker stands atop her grave, with the ghost of letters once carefully carved reading “Grandma.” Today just the G is visible, with a few green and black paint remnants. Nearby, an identical wooden grave marker reads “Grandpa.” This second marker belongs to Eliza’s ex-husband, Lorenzo Waterman. Eliza and Lorenzo arrived in Jackson Hole separately, after living in Minnesota, Oklahoma and Teton Basin in Idaho. It was in Teton Basin that Eliza left her husband to move over the Pass into Jackson Hole to join her single daughter. Georgie Waterman was living on the old Mangum homestead claim, that she left to her mother, Eliza, upon her marriage. Eliza lived here until 1926 when Coulter Huyler purchased the homestead to create the Bear Paw Ranch. When Huyler first heard of the homestead being for sale, Eliza was known as Mrs. Jack Seaton. Sometime after leaving Lorenzo in Idaho, Eliza married John Seaton, nearly two decades her junior. The marriage was short-lived, and the pair separated. Seaton lived south of Eliza’s homestead, and Lorenzo later moved nearby. Both the men would sell their lands to Coulter Huyler.
Eliza was a strong-willed, fiercely independent woman. Having left two husbands, she was happy to continue on her homestead alone until old age slowed her down. In her youth, she was known for staving off an attempted robbery while she and her first husband Lorenzo were moving to Idaho. Two men pulled alongside their wagon and while Lorenzo ducked, Eliza held up her shotgun and told the men she’d have none of their nonsense, regardless of their threats. The thieves backed down and the Watermans continued on their journey unscathed. It would seem she instilled this same pioneering spirit into her daughter, who moved into Jackson Hole on her own and settled on an old homestead claim. Georgie fixed up the cabin, and later invited her mother to join her. Georgie is among those at the Granite Ridge Cemetery, well-hidden but not forgotten.
This small, private cemetery has restricted access, please be respectful of and observe all postage signage when visiting.