Saturday, May 7, 2011

Yellowstone National Park, Part III

After spending countless hours in the car the past couple days, we decided to stay at Mammoth Hot Springs today.  The other day when we wandered around the hot springs, we didn’t do the upper portion of that tour.  Also at Mammoth is the old Fort Yellowstone.  We got those things done today.

Fort Yellowstone

Fort Yellowstone was established as a way to protect the park.  For several years after gaining National Park status, Yellowstone was abused and misused.  Hunters and poachers came for the animals, tourists, wanting souvenirs, defaced the natural features, entrepreneurs set up camps at the hot springs to make money.  When underpaid and over worked superintendents couldn’t stop the damage being done, the U.S. Army was called in.

In 1886 the Army arrived and ended up staying over 30 years.  Thinking the assignment wouldn’t last too long, the soldiers erected temporary buildings.  After just about freezing their butts off for several winters, they finally saw the light and began constructing a permanent fort.  The first buildings were finished in 1891 and construction continued until 1913.

The Army is credited with providing the much needed law and order and, as a result, saved Yellowstone from further destruction.

This was our last day for touring this great park.  We’ve already decided we’ll have to come back; maybe some year in late summer.

That’s all for today.  Thanks for tagging along.

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