In this cemetery are the remains of many of the settlers of the town of Pettyville. In 1873, George Petty led fifteen families from the town of Manti to an area located two miles west of Sterling. They built a settlement and named it after Mr. Petty.
Water was very important to the pioneers of Pettyville. They chose to build their homes along the Sanpitch River and within easy access to the many springs they found in the western mountains. However, because this land was part of the Paiute Indian Reservation, the pioneers had only squatters rights to the land.
Because education was considered essential to the growth of the community, a two-room schoolhouse was built. The first teacher was a Mr. Riley.
By July 11, 1877, forty-nine members were listed in the records of the Pettyville Ward of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Church services were held in various homes.
In 1881, James C. Snow secured from the government the right to survey the present site of Sterling. Within a few short years, the people of Pettyville had moved to Sterling or Manti, leaving behind loved ones who were buried in the Pettyville Cemetery.
When a road was built connecting the area to the main highway, the road went through the old Pettyville Cemetery. Some of the graves were opened, and the remains were moved to the Sterling Cemetery. However, it is believed that some unidentified graves still remain at the Pettyville site.
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