Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Happy Birthday Glacier!!

100 years ago today President William Howard Taft signed a bill establishing Glacier National Park as the 10th park in the United States of America! The good folks at Glacier National Park Centennial have put together a nice timeline here where you can read about the last 100 years of Glacier's history.

Mt. Gould with flowers in July of 2005.
 Glacier National Park was originally inhabited by the Piegan Blackfeet tribe in the east and the Flathead tribe in the west. The Piegan reservation now borders the park to the east and the Flathead tribes can be found the west and south of the park.
One of my favorite historic pictures from the park.

Also taking place in 1910 the Great Northern Railroad commissioned 9 chalets and tent camps be built in the national park, using the slogan "See America First." The first the Belton Chalet, was open for business on June 27th, 1910. The Great Northern Railroad also built a permanent rail station in the town of Belton, now known as West Glacier. The railroads publicity and building efforts help to make Glacier assessable and a popular travel destination. Today many of these lodges are still operating.

Glacier Park Lodge, East Glacier, Montana. This lodge opened on June 15th, 1913. The Blackfeet Indians, from which the land for the lodge was purchased, named the new lodge “Omahkoyis” or  “Big Tree Lodge".

"The immense timbers that support the Lodge were probably 500 to 800 years old when they were cut and all of them retain their bark. There are 60 of them, 36 to 42 inches in diameter and 40 feet long. The timbers in the lobby are Douglas fir and the verandahs are supported by Cedars from Washington." [link]
 Glacier Park Lodge 2008

Historical Many Glacier Hotel, which opened to the public on July 4, 1915.

The 100 year anniversary will be continuing all year. I hope you all have a chance to visit this wonderful park! You can read some of my other Glacier related post here.

Lake McDonald

Happy Birthday GLACIER!! 
Looking down from above Grinnell Glacier, to the east. From upper to lower: meltwater pond on Salamander Glacier, meltwater pond on Grinnell Glacier, Grinnell Lake, Lake Josephine, and Lake Sherburne in far distance.

© ReBecca K. Hunt-Foster

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