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National Parks: Early Views of Western Parks

Posted by Laurie Frost on October 13, 2009

Here are a few images of several Western National Parks dating from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, all courtesy of the Library of Congress’s Prints and Photographs Online Catalog. Digital catalog numbers are listed at the bottom of this post.

Climbing in Mt. Rainier National Park, Washington

I don’t know what to make of this caption from the Library of Congress’s bibliographic record, or, more to the point, what to make of that Christmas tree amid all the splendor of the trees surrounding it: “Flathead Indians holding pre-Christmas family gatherings on the west side of Glacier National Park, in the dense forest of evergreen trees that skirt the Rocky Mountains.” Don’t the people look a bit underdressed for December in the Rocky Mountains?

Wawona tunnel tree, Upper Mariposa Grove, Yosemite, California

“The fallen monarch, surrounded by Co. F, 6th Cavalry U.S.A., Mariposa big tree grove, Yosemite Valley National Park, Calif.” 1900

Interior of H.E. Klamer’s curio store, Yellowstone, 1909

President Theodore Roosevelt at Liberty Cap, Yellowstone, 1903

“Desecration of our national parks–A scene that may be witnessed if the Yellowstone Park is leased to speculators.” This illustration by W.A. Rogers appeared in the Jan. 20, 1883 issue of Harper’s Weekly.

Library of Congress ID Numbers:

stagecoach: cph 3b43413

Rainier: LC-USZ62-100874

Xmas: LC-USZ62-8999

tree tunnel: LC-USZ62-97301

fallen tree: USZ62-63620

store: USZ62-92911

Roosevelt: ppmsca-18930

Harper’s: USZ62-122812

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