Val Verde County Historical Commission

Val Verde County Historical Commission

Babb Cemetery at Langtry

The Babb Cemetery is a small, privately owned cemetery cut out of the brush on flat ground just southeast of the Langtry town site. Only eleven (or twelve because of one double grave) burials are marked: the earliest is dated 1898 and the most recent occurred in 2003. There are four other sites within the (unmarked) bounds of the cemetery that may contain graves. The cemetery and all its graves face east, towards the Rio Grande Canyon and the rising sun. Most of the graves lie in a north-south line and face an open area that would have been Flanders Street had the Langtry town plat been fully developed. A second, partial-row of graves lies immediately behind (to the west) the main row of graves, but does not extend to full width of the front row.

No one seems to know exactly when the cemetery originated, or why it did so as a separate entity from the Langtry town cemetery.

Babb Cemetery Photo Log
Cl: The intersection of the north-south road through Langtry (south of the Hanging Tree) and the path (withdrawing to the east) to the Babb Cemetery.
C2: The path to the Babb Cemetery sways through the brush giving the appearance of dead-ending without any particular destination.
C3: The path opens up at the Babb Cemetery with the Cemetery on the right (south side of path).
The open area from which this image was shot is mostly free of the brush that surrounds the cemetery, but small, nasty cacti necessitating the wearing of boots. This image shows the brush to the northeast of the Cemetery and the Rio Grande cliffs on the Mexican side of the river in the distance.

B&W1: This image (facing north-westward) shows the north part of the Babb Cemetery with graves l though 3A & 3B. The car is located on the path to the Cemetery.
B&W2: This image (facing westward) shows the center part of the Babb Cemetery. While some of the graves are not visible in the image, this image covers graves 2 though 9.
B&W3: The image (facing south—westward) shows the south part of the Babb Cemetery. Graves 4 through ll are part of this image.
B&W4: Is shot from the south end of the cemetery looking to the north along the north-south axis.

Babb Cemetery Inventory

The road to the Cemetery borders the north edge of the Cemetery, Each grave is numbered, generally in a north—to-south order

Grave #1: rough cut gray headstone, machine carved; a desiccated wooden picket fence surrounds the grave, and a chain link fence, embedded in cement surrounded the older fence; this fence has no gate, and the grave is badly overgrown with brush and cactus (the whole area is overgrown to some level or other)

George R. Upshaw
Jan. 4, 1849
Ian. 24, 1898
Gone but not forgotten

Possible Grave #P1: oblong raised area adjacent Grave #1; no headstone

Grave #2: wooden cross composed of desiccated lx6’s; no writing is visible on the wood

Possible Grave #P2: oblong raised area behind (on the second row) Grave #2; no headstone

Grave #3A & #3B: machine carved pairstone surrounded by wrought-iron, decorative fence, a flat expanse of cement with embedded marble chips covers the graves; each grave includes a small, marble footstone with the initials of the person

Babb [centered at top of stone with flowers underneath]
William I.         Laura Alice
1854-1935     1856-1936
Father            Mother
The praise of those who sleep in earth
The pleasant memory of their worth
The hope to meet when life is past
Shall heal the tortured mind at last

Grave #4: graves #4, #5, and #6 are surrounded by a similar wrought-iron, decorative fence; the manufactures plaque in on the gate to Graves #3A & #3B and on the gate to Graves #4, #5, and #6; grave #4 has a small marble footstone with carved with initials

Willie L. Babb [with handshake emblem above his name, suggestive of fraternal order]
July 29, 1876
Dec. 8, 1913
This simple tablet marks a father’s bier
And those he loved in life in death are near

Grave #5: a flat expanse of cement with embedded marble chips covers graves #5 & #6; grave #5 includes a small, marble footstone with no initials

Baby Babb [with a lamb carved above the name] Born & Died
Dec. 22, 1908
Weep not, he is at rest

Grave #6: a flat expanse of cement with embedded marble chips covers the graves; grave #5 includes a small, marble footstone with the initials of the person

Dorothy Nell Babb
Born Aug. 27, 1917
Died Jan. 15, 1919
Sleep on sweet baby
and take thy rest
God called thee home
He thought it best

Grave #7: the headstone is a pairstone, but only one of the named persons is buried here; the stone is a rough cut native stone (not limestone) quarried in western Val Verde County; the stone is banded with colors, tans and something nearly orange

Together Always
Jack             Jerry
11-16-18     12-28-38
to                to

Grave #8: this headstone is a machine polished marble; it is set on another stone which has the verse

Flora Myrtle Babb
Born Oct. 8, 1902
Died Jan. 18, 1919
On that bright immortal shore
We shall meet to part no more

Possible Grave #P3: area is oblong raised area with a small rectangular (with rounded corners and irregular thickness) stone at the west end of raised area, reminiscent of a headstone

Possible Grave #P4: is a raised area, even higher than #P3 with more rough limestone rock but no suggestion of a headstone; #P3 and #P4 seem to be aligned with Graves #7 & #8

Grave #9: this headstone may be cement; it was hand-carved with the following inscription below a Cross; the grave is unusual in that it seems raised above ground level nearly one foot of rough cut limestone and cement

Julio 17
Margarita Torres

Grave #10: the headstones for Graves #10 & #11 are both machine polished, gray granite; both graves are enclosed in a modern chain link fence

Bennie W. Babb
Nov. 22, 1913
Nov. 17, 1994

Grave #11: this headstone is the most recent as well as being the southernmost

Lena L. Babb
Sept. 9, 1921
Nov. 14, 2003