Wish You Were Here! Vintage Jackson Hole Post Cards & Maps

Post Cards Home Page

Decades of history preserved a few cents at a time!

The Chapel of the TransfigurationPostcards, when combined with period area maps, are invaluable resources. They can reveal the evolution of tourist destinations in a way few books can. Publishers of both postcards and maps are always “in the moment”, supplying the most current information to the traveling masses as they visit parks and tourist destinations around the world. As the years and decades roll along, the once topical information becomes 10¢ “windows into the past”.

Tourists buy postcards for two primary reasons. First, they purchase them, fill them out while on the road, and mail the colorful cards to their friends and relatives. Inscriptions on many postcards include the lines, “Having a great time. Wish you were here!” Second, tourists purchase extra cards to document their own trip. They take them home and store them in a folder, scrapbook, or journal. Those postcards are often unused and beautifully intact. Years later, both genre of cards show up, giving them a second life for nostalgic collectors. The postcards unwittingly document ever so slight changes in the area they represent.

With its majestic mountains as a backdrop, Jackson Hole has always attracted tourists, artists, photographers, and poets. It’s only natural they would want to document their trips, and with that, many publishers catered to them with colorful postcards, books, guides, and pamphlets!


Four important dates

While viewing the various pages, linked below, it might be important to know these dates:

  • 1872 : Yellowstone was established by an Act of Congress on March 1, 1872. It was the first (and still largest) National Park.
  • 1929: Grand Teton National Park was established by an Act of Congress on Feb 26, 1929.
  • 1943: A Jackson Hole National Monument proclamation combined Teton National Forest lands with other federal acres, plus Jackson Lake and a 35,000-acre donation by John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
  • 1950: Grand Teton National Park was united using the original 1929 Park and the 1943 National Monument (including Rockefeller’s acreage) to it’s current, more expansive boundary. September 14, 1950

Postcard Pages on this site


Dornan's Chuck WagonNEW: Moose Junction: The doorway to Grand Teton National Park

While many farms and ranches were already active in Jackson, the area at Moose found its legs as the commercial entrance to the Park. A new steel bridge connected the east and west banks of the Snake and the rest is history.


Downtown Jackson: History revealed in collectible postcards.

This amazing set of images show the towns transition over several decades. Watch for the vintage cars, neon signs, and hodge-podge architecture.


The Chapel of the Transfiguration

NEW: The Chapel of the Transfiguration:

Built in 1925, and still in use, this beautiful Chapel has hosted thousands of tourists, locals, and countless weddings. It’s a bit off the beaten path now, but was very much “on the path” for many of the Park’s early years.


Snake River Overlook

NEW: Snake River Overlook: Postcards & Photos

Ansel Adams helped make the location famous with is 1942 photo, but it would be many years before the highway made it accessible for the tourists and photographers. Watch the trees grow!



Scalawags and Bridges ~ The Old Buffalo Fork Bridge:

This old bridge showed up in postcards from a lot of photographers. It had a storied history, used until the new bridge was built near Moran Junction in 1958. Most tourists used the main road that ran along the base of the Tetons much farther west. This page contains both postcards and historic photos.


Early Roads in Grand Teton National Park:

This a post I created in 2013 containing a cross section of several of the posts above. It features postcards, maps, and a few photos.



Early Photographers and Businessmen

There have been countless photographers taking images that would later be used for postcards and literature. These two photographers blazed the trail for all that followed.

Harrison R. Crandall – Grand Teton National Park’s First Official Photographer

Mr. Crandall was a groundbreaking and influential individual in Jackson Hole. This page only scratches the surface of his life and ventures.


Haynes Yellowstone BearsF.J. Haynes – Yellowstone’s First Official Photographer: Under Construction

You don’t have to look very far to find many vintage postcards, guides, books, and souvenirs with Haynes name on it somewhere.

Haynes was documenting Yellowstone long before Grand Teton National Park was established.

F.J. Haynes’ page(s) will take considerable time and energy but I am confident it will we worth the wait!

While he spent most of his time in Yellowstone, he ventured to the smaller park south of Yellowstone for some photos.



This is the new HOME PAGE for the Post Cards. I need to get back to work for now, but plan on adding quite a few more postcard pages, such as Mountain Lakes and Streams. Check back! MJ


Best of the Tetons Photo Tours

I offer year round photo tours in Grand Teton National Park and Winter tours in the National Elk Refuge.  Book now! Click the image for additional information.

The post Wish You Were Here! Vintage Jackson Hole Post Cards & Maps first appeared on Best of the Tetons, Area Info & Photography.

Teton County Fair 2017

Teton County Fair

The Teton County Fair happens each year during the last week of July—smack dab in the middle of the busy Summer season. I’ll be running the snow blower and shoveling snow soon enough, but for now this colorful event offers a welcome break! Our kids are grown and “out of the nest” but that doesn’t mean I can’t return to the Fair for my own form of fun. Continue reading “Teton County Fair 2017”

Jackson Hole’s Great Solar Eclipse!

A Page of Resources and Links

August 21st will be the big day for this year’s Solar Eclipse—and Jackson Hole is directly in the totality path!  The Park Service is preparing for the event with extra staff, one way roads, camping and parking restrictions and so forth. Expect bumper to bumper traffic and all kinds of “issues”. Even with a few potential logistical hassles, this will be a once in a lifetime opportunity for most of us.

Luckily, I live in the path so I don’t have much invested in the eclipse. I don’t have to gamble at all! Others will have paid premium prices to be in Jackson Hole for the event—with no guarantee of clear skies. Heavy clouds, and even smoke from area fires, are always a possibility. Barring clouds or smoke, onlookers can expect some of the least polluted skies in the country. Plenty of areas of the country will be in the path of the Solar Eclipse but Jackson Hole will be a hot ticket! Remember—it will be August. Traditionally it is a very hot month in most parts of the US. Jackson Hole’s cool weather and clear skies make it a premier location.


NOAA: Ready, Set, Eclipse: As the map indicates, JH is predicted to have a good chance of clear skies for the Eclipse in August (Historical Averages). Viewers originally planning on being in Oregon might rethink their choices. The “clear skies” gamble is much higher there. Continue reading “Jackson Hole’s Great Solar Eclipse!”

When you feel the need for speed

I have commented previously about the time spent at a computer in our world of high-resolution digital photography. When I am not out shooting, I am often in the office in Jackson, Wyoming at the computer importing, tweaking, categorizing, editing, and backing up large numbers of digital images.  One of the first things I learned was don’t try to do this on your average laptop.

Today’s high-end digital cameras produce raw file images that easily exceed 25 – 40 megabytes per image. Large multi-layer edits and specialized combined images, like panoramas, can easily kick the file size up to 100 or 200 megabytes or even a gigabyte in size. Handling these huge files takes some serious computing power.

My recommendation for an office / studio computer for high volume editing is a traditional tower computer – usually a high speed model designed for gaming. These gaming PCs have high power processors, lots of memory, a dedicated video processor with additional memory, and high speed peripheral ports to external devices. My office system is based around such a gaming PC and is shown on the cover photo of this post.

Let’s take a look at some of the specs needed to handle today’s large files and editing software. I have a CyperPower PC available from many gaming PC distributors. The heart of this monster is a 4.33 MHz dual-core processor accessing 16 GB of RAM and driving a high speed video card with an additional 2 GB of memory. This is a good kick-start but the real accelerator in the system is a solid-state drive (SSD) that houses all of the operating system and all software. The SSD is between 4 and 10 times faster than the best mechanical hard drive and the speed is evident when you are opening large files. There is a Blu-Ray DVD / CD drive for loading software and burning preview disks for clients.  The traditional 2 TB internal hard drive and 3 cooling fans completes the guts of the tower.

I have chosen USB-3 peripherals. You can use fire-wire and other proprietary connections but I like the ease of use and wide compatibility of the USB connectors. The tower has 2 USB-3s in front and 4 in back along with a few USB-2s for I/O devices like keyboards and tablets.  I chose Logitech wireless wave keyboard and wireless 4-button / wheel mouse for general input and control of the machine. Another port is used for a high speed card reader for my CF and HSSD camera cards.

Also using the USB-3 connectors are a series of external hard drives for back-up and additional archiving of images. I use a pair of 4 TB primary back-up drives, a 2 TB travel drive, and a 1T drive with the SSD image just in case this highly reliable device should fail or be corrupted. Another option is a RAID drive with automatic dual-drive back-up. It is on my wish list but the high cost and lack of higher capacity make me stick with the twin 4 TB externals. When a 16 GB RAID device is available at a reasonable cost, that will be the way to go.

The main editing interfaces are a pair of 27″ ViewSonic high resolution monitors linked by HDMI to the PC. Two large monitors are almost essential to efficient editing. When I am working in Adobe LightRoom, I use the keyboard/mouse with the interface on the right-hand monitor and a full-screen image on the left-hand monitor. This saves constant switching back and forth to full-screen views after each edit. When I need to open PhotoShop for more advanced pixel-level editing, it comes up on the right-hand monitor above the Wacom Intuos-5 digital tablet.  I simply angle my chair a little to the left and pick up the stylus and I am ready to go. When I save the edited image, it drops back into LightRoom on the right-hand monitor and I am ready to move on.

In a nutshell, the keys for efficient digital editing are a high speed processor with lots of RAM and plenty of external disk space for back-ups. Meticulous cataloging and key wording of images and daily back-up of your work should allow you to stay in the field shooting and minimize your time at the computer.