Ancestors of Grantsville’s first mayor, Cyrus Wakefield Bates, gathered at the Grantsville Cemetery Saturday to dedicate a new headstone for the mayor and his wife Lydia Harrington Bates.
The great grandnephew of the mayor, Gordon Bates, of Farmington, offered a dedicatory prayer.
“The new headstone was put in the week of Thanksgiving, but we waited until spring and some warmer weather to dedicate it,” he said. “Although today is a bit cold and rainy.”
Cyrus Wakefield Bates served two terms as Grantsville’s first mayor from 1867 to 1875. He was born Jan. 22, 1827, and died Jan. 16, 1895, at 67 years old.
Gordon Bates said records show that Cyrus Bates was a member of the The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. At age 17, he drove a team of horses from his home in New York to Nauvoo, Illinois, to meet the Prophet Joseph Smith in 1844.
After living in Wisconsin with his family for 12 years, the 35-year-old Cyrus Bates formed a wagon company and brought his family of five across the plains to first settle in Batesville (Erda), Utah.
Records show he soon moved westward to neighboring Grantsville where he established a farm with pasture land and built his house.
According to “A History of Tooele County 1998 Edition,” Cyrus Bates was elected the city’s first mayor when Grantsville was incorporated on Jan. 9, 1867.
Evidence of additional and extended civil service to community is recorded in Cyrus Bates’ obituary:
“He has served as selectman of Tooele County two or three times, also as justice of the peace of that precinct; and when Grantsville was incorporated he was elected mayor, serving two terms. He also served several terms as one of the councilors of the city and was occupying that position at the time of his death.”
The mayor’s great-great grandnephew, Brian Bates, thanked the Grantsville Historical Preservation Committee, and Grantsville City Councilwoman Jewel Allen for making the event possible.