This is the centennial year of the construction of the East Glacier Lodge, outside of Glacier National Park in Montana. So thought in honor of that, I would post the following photo:
I violated Steve Jeff's out of focus standard, but this is of a group of cars lined up outside the Glacier Park Lodge. I love the Teepee and the guys staring at the camera. I believe this was taken from the steps of the train station, for those of you familiar with the area. A larger image of this thumbnail is available here. Get out in the parking lot, walk around and enjoy. At some point, you will hit the limits of the original image, but you should be able to zoom into detail using your web browser controls (CNTRL-+). WARNING: Its a BIG file, so may take several moments for the image to appear...
This was found in an antique mall in Billings MT. The attraction to me was not the vehicles so much, as at this same moment, about 100 miles east I had family trying to survive in much less splendor (Stan: Galata...)
I did not notice until about a year after I purchased this, but this is the AAA Reliability Tour.
Note the sign in the window of one of the cars.
As you can see from the link above, supposedly this tour ended in 1913. HOWEVER, a historian of the park told me that 1) This was taken in the summer of 1914 (due to the fact that an addition added soon after is missing from the building 2) That this is the earliest known photo of cars in Glacier. It is the only known copy. It is in poor condition, and approx 2 ft long(!). It hangs in my office, but I think I will send it to a better home at some point.
The dating is a bit tricky on this one. We know that in 1915 an addition was added that is not shown. You can look in the high country and tell the time of year. So this is either right after opening in 1913 or late summer 1914. My information on the dating is as follows. My area of collecting is Yellowstone, not Glacier. I had purchased a photo of a YNP(Yellowstone) Park Bus. I was contact by someone who wanted to use the photo for a book. The reason was the tire tread on the bus (!!). The tread on the bus was only used by Goodyear 1 year - summer 1914. In case you did not know, tires were leased back then not purchased. The author wanted an example of that summer's lease program in 1914. Anyway, he put me in touch second hand with someone represented to me as the official historian of Glacier, who dated the photo to 1914. I know that when you look at the photo, the dating will become important to the discussion, so I am mentioning the arcane points of dating this one.
Sorry for the external link, but thought it was the easiest way to deal with the size limitation on forum postings. Click the link, zoom in and out as needed.
The car with the AAA sign in the window is a 1913 Model T. It appears to be the only Ford in the group.
Great photo. Hard to believe that was only 100 years ago. Thanks for posting it.