National Park - Great Northern Railway
Fred Kiser Artographs 1909 -1912
Anyone with an interest in Glacier National Park or the
Great Northern Railway has probably seen Fred Kiser’s hand-colored
photographs and postcards. The subject and scenes of Glacier Park
are timeless - the muted colors are the quintessence of the mountains.
When James Jerome Hill built his Great Northern through the Rocky
Mountains, tourism was not considered a high priority; transporting
settlers and development of natural resources was his foremost interest.
In the early 1900s, Jim Hill stepped away from sole control
of the railroad,
leaving his son Louis Hill in charge of expanding the company’s
holdings. Among advancing transportation endeavors,
became enamored by the beauty of the region that is now Glacier Park.
Mr. Hill joined George Bird Grinnell in fostering support
for national park
with Glacier National Park being
officially created May 11, 1910.
In the early years of the 1900s, Fred H. Kiser, [apparently the “H” it is
not an abbreviation of any other name, it is just “H.”] and his brother Oscar
had achieved the reputation as excellent commercial photographers specializing
in mountain landscapes. In 1905, Fred
was chosen as the officialphotographer for the Lewis and Clark Exposition at Portland, Oregon.
Louis Hill recognized the potential of using Mr. Kiser’s unique hand-colored
Fred was hired as the official photographer of the Great Northern Railway,
and for six years
spent his summers in the Glacier environs. Kiser coined the phrase See
America First |in 1906 as part of the railroad’s publicity campaign.
In 1909, the Great Northern supplied him with
a private railway car.
book is a tribute to Fred Kiser - who brought color
to Glacier National Park in the age of black and white