A little history lesson
In the first 10 years of Yellowstone’s life as a National Park it was under serious threat from exploitation. Speculators built camps and hotels right next to the hot springs along with bath’s and laundries in the hot springs for the tourists. People took large pieces of geysers and artifacts from the grounds, while hunters poached animals.
With no one to protect the resources Congress, in 1886, sent in the Army to protect these natural resources. For the first 5 years life was harsh in temporary Camp Sheridan. Soldiers lived in temporary wood framed buildings and tents through harsh winters. In 1890 Congress allocated money for a permanent post, Fort Yellowstone, to be built in the Mammoth Hot Springs area seeing no end in site for the Army’s deployment here. In 1910 there were 324 soldiers stationed here patrolling the park on horse back in summer and skis in the winter.
Fort Yellowstone 1910
A few weeks ago my grandson and I visited the Orange Empire Railway Museum (LINK) when the annual Steampunk fair was being held. This non-profit museum opened in 1956 to preserve Southern California’s railway history that dates from the 1870’s. With over 200 historic railway locomotives, passenger cars, freight cars, streetcars, interurban electric cars, buildings, and other artifacts from Los Angeles and the West, the 90-acre site in Perris, California is open to the public every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas (check site for current opening days, times and special events).
Back in 2001 it was decided to visit England, Scotland and Wales and to delve into the history, architecture and culture of the country. What we discovered was an excellent way to do this, Living Outdoor Museums. This was the first Living Open-Air museum that I had ever visited and it started a search for additional ones during all future travels in the USA and Europe. Visiting one gives you the experience and a real sense of the past as you discover what life was like. Within the different buildings there usually are actors in period dress demonstrating the daily life of the time being depicted, while answering questions you might have and explaining what it was like living in those times.