Does your bucket list include visiting America’s National Parks? To get started, explore America with this gallery of 10 vintage National Park posters!
Ever since Americans began looking West, we’ve had a love of wide, open spaces that leave us awestruck with the beauty and majesty of nature. Since the first National Park, Yellowstone, was established in 1872, Americans have been drawn to the great outdoors. The pull of the pristine wilderness drew President Theodore Roosevelt to tour Yellowstone with naturalist John Muir in 1903. That tour left a lasting imprint on Roosevelt, and he was so inspired by his three-day experience that it led him to create the United States Forest Service, five new National Parks, 18 new National Monuments, 51 bird preserves, four game preserves and 150 National Forests. Throughout his presidency, Roosevelt made liberal use of executive order to conserve land and wildlife.
Theodore Roosevelt and John Muir on Glacier Point, Yosemite Valley, California
Photographer: Underwood & Underwood
Our National Parks are some of the most popular tourist destinations in the country, with up to 325 million people visiting each year. Since their establishment, our National Parks have been widely used by Americans to hike, camp, ski, canoe, kayak and otherwise enjoy nature. The National Park Service and private travel and tourism companies once advertised these destinations with colorfully designed and illustrated posters that have since become highly collectible. Even reproductions of these eye-catching advertisements are prized for their decorative value.
Here are ten examples so you too can explore America with this gallery of vintage National Park posters.
Bus Travel Poster, “Yellowstone”
Artist: H. Goodwin
Santa Fe Grand Canyon Travel Poster
Artist: Oscar M. Bryn
The Cody Road to Yellowstone Park
Society of Poster Art, Chicago
The National Parks Preserve Wild Life
Artist: J. Hirt
Wild Life, The National Parks Preserve All Life
NYC Art Project
Lassen Volcanic National Park, California
Designer: C. Don Powell
Zion National Park, Ranger Naturalist Service
Designer: C. Don Powell
Where the Deer and the Antelope Play
Artist: Dorothy Waugh
Rainier National Park, Northern Pacific North Coast Limited
Artist: Gustav Wilhelm Krollmann
See America, Visit the National Parks
Artist: Harry Herzog
P.S. If you are the proud owner of one of our Retro National Parks calendars, your monthly images are perforated for easy removal and will fit in standard sized frames, so you too can decorate with National Park posters!
To explore the history of our National Parks further, visit the Library of Congress to see more posters and photographs.