Camping Out In The Yellowstone

Camping out in Yellowstone, 1882 describes the park at a time when Yellowstone was truly an "out-back and beyond" experience.

Writing just five years after the army chased the Nez Peirce Indians through the area, and only ten years after the park’s establishment, Mary Richards provides a vivid picture of the undeveloped and untouristed Yellowstone Park: Fire Hole Basin, Mammoth Hot Spring, Lower Falls, and the Excelsior Geyser, now defunct but mightier at the time than Old Faithful. Augmented by twenty-eight contemporary photographs, this book offers a fascinating perspective for present-day Park lovers.

Mary Bradshaw Richards was born in Salem, Massachusetts in 1825. In 1882 she and her husband traveled to Yellowstone from their home in New York City.

William W. Slaughter is a photo archivist for the Historical Department Archives of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Salt Lake City.

Table of Contents:


Salt Lake City
The Journey Begun
Making Rapid Progress
In Geyserland
Tramping and Camping
Wonders of the Park
Indescribable Beauties
Yellowstone Canyon
Two Extremes
Drawing to a Close
Last Sunday in Camp


Praise and Reviews:

“The letters of Mary Richards ably describe their traveling and camping experiences, as well as the virgin fantasyland of the Yellowstone. Excellent photographs of appropriate vintage complement the texts. A good introduction of one of the greatest of our natural parks to the uninitiated readers. Simultaneously provides the details of a Yellowstone experience that many of us who have recently enjoyed the crowded park can only dream about, historically.”—Denver Westerners Roundup

“Articulate and observant. Handy and handsome.”—Environmental History

“How rare it is that a piece of the past lives on the printed page with the freshness of a new-minted morning. It lives in the letters of Mary Bradshaw Richards."—Salt Lake Tribune

“Captures an early era of Yellowstone Park when it was just beginning to be developed. History buffs will be enchanted.”—The Fort Worth Stockyards Gazette

“A charming journal of life in our nation’s newest national park. We are fortunate that Mr. Slaughter decided to edit [Richards’] journals and make them available.”—The Inkslinger

“Slaughter’s thorough notes clarify man of the references in the original text.”—Los Angeles Times