We are pleased to share that a strategy is in place to preserve the last 1-acre inholding on the iconic Mormon Row Historic District and ultimately transfer it to Grand Teton National Park. The property was listed for sale last June by its owners Iola and Hal Blake who are descendants of TA Moulton—one of the original pioneers who homesteaded the area in the early twentieth century. Under Teton County, WY’s zoning regulations, a private purchaser could have redeveloped the inholding, building up to 10,000 square feet of new construction that may not have been compatible with the historic district, scenic viewshed, and conservation purposes of the surrounding park.
News of the one-of-a-kind real estate listing spread across the nation, highlighting the risk of development to this key piece of Grand Teton National Park’s history. A generous philanthropist approached the Foundation to see if there was a possibility to purchase the property, referred to as the Moulton Ranch Cabins, and donate the inholding to Grand Teton. The anonymous donor cares deeply for the park and is concerned about its pressing need for seasonal workforce housing.
“What a wonderful phone call to receive,” Grand Teton National Park Foundation President Leslie Mattson said. “There are many benefits of this property becoming part of the park. We are proud to help keep the Mormon Row Historic District intact and further the conservation of Grand Teton National Park. The Foundation is focused on protecting park resources and finding solutions that further Grand Teton’s scenic, wildlife, and historic values. This is a great resolution for a key inholding and builds on the success of Antelope Flats.”
The Blakes are delighted with the outcome and that their family’s legacy is secured. They will sell their Mormon Row property to Grand Teton National Park Foundation before year-end. This will continue a near century-long effort to manage and conserve land within Grand Teton’s boundaries, a vision that has incrementally shaped the park that we know today. Once transferred to the park, the existing lodging facilities will be utilized for seasonal employee housing—a critical need for Grand Teton.
“The opportunity to preserve an important part of the Mormon Row Historic District is incredible and helps to achieve our conservation, cultural, and historic resource stewardship responsibilities,” Grand Teton National Park Superintendent David Vela said. “It will allow the historic district to stay intact and will provide protection of the facilities through much-needed seasonal workforce housing and increased presence at the site. My deepest gratitude to all involved for maintaining this legacy in Grand Teton National Park.”