“A decaying piece of Utah history”
Grafton is a photogenic, partially preserved ghost town located near Rockville, just outside of Zion National Park. It is located along the Smithsonian Butte scenic backway. The old school is fairly well preserved and is often photographed. The old cemetery is also worth visiting. The town was established in 1859 by pioneers attempting to grow cotton along the Virgin River. In June 1997, the Grafton Heritage Partnership was organized to protect, preserve, and restore the Grafton Townsite. With cooperation from former Grafton residents, the Utah State Historical Society, the BLM, the Utah Division of State History, and others, the old church, Russel Home, Louisa Foster Home, the Berry fence in the cemetery, and John Wood home were restored, with new windows, doors, roofing and other structural enhancements to represent the period in which they were built. In addition, 150 acres of farmland were purchased, on which agricultural operations are performed to enhance the farming appearance. The site is under 24 hour surveillance.
It's an unusual stop, some of the buildings are inaccessible as they are private property (which is strange for a ghost town) but about half of them you can walk through. They are completely bare as they should be. The road to the town is inaccessible in rain so be aware. The cemetery is worth a visit also. It's not designed to be a tourist attraction (like Calico) but reflects a real ghost town feel; just a few buildings left behind.
Grafton is accessed down a dirt road so high clearance is recommended. Some of the buildings are on private property, but a local fund preserves some for public access. Absolutely worth a stop if you're coming for Zion or just passing through. It is a gorgeous piece of history.
A nice little side trek on our way back from a great day at Zion NP. A nice pamphlet with a lot of history. Only one of the buildings was on private property and could not be accessed. A fun stop if you have the time. The last 2 miles of the drive is on a graveled road and then dirt road. The cemetery is impressive and nice that the historical society is trying to preserve the graves and up date the headstones while keeping the original.
It’s okay. It’s free. You can go in the buildings. Cute detour. Nice scenery.
A nice historical location of a time long past. The cemetery features a lot of original headstones. Small school house and a few cool fact boards about. Nice and off the beaten track, non-typical-tourist attraction.
A nice stop with a few well preserved buildings. The cemetery is well cared for and walking through the homes was fun to do!
nice area. We liked that the old restored buildings maintained and kept in a good shape. We have made some nice photos there.
totally worth going to if you're in the area. Coolest part is the cemetery with the mountains in the back ground. GNARLY
Only a few buildings but very close to Zion Park -- worth a stop for a quick photo if you're nearby!
A disappointment. We went out of our way to get here. It is interesting, but it's been so restored that it loses something. If you don't have to go out of your way, it's not a terrible stop.
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Grafton Ghost Town
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