Glorious Glacier

Dated March, 1940, this 32-page booklet has fourteen color photos and more than 80 black-and-white photos of Glacier Park, its hotels and chalets, trails, and other things to do and see in the park. The booklet is also decorated with Indian art that the Blackfeet used to adorn their lodges, and has a large, fold-out map of the park in back.

Click image to download a 25.5-MB PDF of this booklet. Click here to download an OCR version.

The color photos are so stunning, even today, that I have to wonder again why they put relatively muddy black-and-white photos on the same pages as color when adding more color would have added little to the cost of printing. The inside back cover has a list of Great Northern passenger agents that is covered by the fold-out map; the PDF presents two versions of the page (and its opposite page): one showing the list of agents as if the map were not glued in and one with the map completely unfolded.

In 1940, the booklet says, the Great Northern operated four major hotels in the park, all of which still exist: Glacier, Many Glacier, Lake MacDonald, and Prince of Wales (in Canada’s Waterton Lakes Park). The booklet describes them as having “city comforts” including “excellent meals” at “reasonable rates.” GN also operated four chalets: Going to the Sun, Two Medicine, Sperry, and Granite Park. The last three still exist but only the last two are still operated as chalets. Today they are quite pricy, but in 1940 GN advertised them as “romantic settings” with “restful accommodations” at “lower rates.”

Finally, the booklet advertises four “trail camps,” with “comfortable beds in floored and heated tents” and “good grub!”: Red Eagle, Fifty Mountain, Crossley Lake, and Goathaunt. As far as I can tell, the first two of these are now just ordinary campgrounds while the last two are hiking destinations with no formal camping facilities.

Leave a Reply