Gateway Communities - Bozeman and Gallatin Gateway

Bozeman is the northwest gateway community to Yellowstone National Park via the Gallatin Gateway through Gallatin Canyon. Bozeman is situated approximately 90 miles from West Yellowstone, Montana and 75 miles from Gardiner, Montana, the western and northern entrances to Yellowstone National Park respectively. Bozeman residents have played a significant role in the history and development of Yellowstone, both before and after it was established as the world’s first national park on March 1, 1872.

Bozeman was the "jumping off" point for several early Yellowstone expeditions. The first was the Folsom, Cook, and Peterson trip in 1869 and later the Washburn, Langford, Doane expedition in 1870. Because of these early excursions the residents of Bozeman probably knew more about the Yellowstone region than any other local populace in the nation.

Perhaps the most important group of people to influence the public's awareness of Yellowstone were the early photographers. Many of these photographers had direct connections to Bozeman. William Henry Jackson was with the Hayden Geological Survey of 1871. This survey party reached Fort Ellis on Sunday, July 9 and departed on July 15, 1871. Jackson’s 1871 photographs of the Yellowstone region helped convince Congress to establish Yellowstone National Park.  Jackson was acquainted with another pioneer photographer, Joshua Crissman, when Crissman allowed Jackson to develop negatives in his photographic studio in Corinne, Utah in 1869. The two would meet again in Bozeman in 1871 and Crissman would accompany Jackson to the Yellowstone region as his assistant.

The Hayden Survey returned to Fort Ellis in mid-July 1872. Jackson was not with the survey at this point because Hayden had elected to split the survey into two groups, directing Jackson's group to photograph the Teton Range and the region south and west of Yellowstone. Jackson arrived in Bozeman on September 1, 1872, and took a side trip to Hyalite Lake, which he described as one of the most beautiful areas he had visited.

Joshua Crissman established a photographic business in Bozeman, Montana Territory, sometime between 1870 and 1871. Jackson discovered Crissman and his Bozeman studio during the Hayden Survey's layover at Fort Ellis. Crissman secured a role as a guest photographer on the Hayden Survey. Some historians speculate that certain images in the 1871 Yellowstone survey collection may be Crissman's, but this has never been confirmed. Given the difficulty of preparing and processing wet plates, it is probable that Crissman and Jackson collaborated at several locations by photographing side by side, Crissman making stereoviews and Jackson making 8x10 inch views. Joshua Crissman did not have the national market or widespread recognition that Jackson enjoyed. Crissman's early photographic images spurred the interest and plans of local private entrepreneurs and tourists expeditions into the Yellowstone region.

Henry Bird Calfee was another important pioneer Bozeman photographer who visited and photographed Yellowstone in the 1870s. Calfee became one of the first photographers to set up a commercial business selling stereoviews of Yellowstone. He took the glass lantern views that W. W. Wylie used for his national lecture tour promoting the park in 1881-1882. Wylie used woodcuts based on Calfee's photographs to illustrate his 1882 Yellowstone guidebook entitled, "Yellowstone National Park, Or The Great American Wonderland." Calfee's stereoviews series were called "The Enchanted Land or Wonders of the Yellowstone National Park by H.B. Calfee." The detail in this circa 1870s stereoview shows Callfee in his camp. The sign to his right reads "Calfee's Views Illustrate All Points Of Interest In The Wonderland." The sign at the bottom of the tree reads "Buy Calfee's Views Of The Wonderland."

The Schlechten brothers, Albert and Alfred, established a photo studio in Bozeman in 1900. Albert took a series of photographs of Yellowstone National Park using a large format camera that produced 11x14 inch negatives. Chris Schlechten, Alfred’s son, ran a photography business in West Yellowstone in the 1930s and photographed extensively in Yellowstone National Park. Albert Schlechten took a series of photographs of the Gallatin Canyon in 1910. He then toured Yellowstone Park in 1911 and took several photographs in the park. Schlechten's photos were the first professional photos taken of the Gallatin Canyon. The photo below of Castle Rock has been professionally tinted.

The most prolific photographers and successful entrepreneurs associated with Bozeman and Yellowstone National Park were the Haynes family. Frank Jay (F. J.) Haynes began his photographic career in Ripon, Wisconsin in 1875.  He moved to the Minnesota-Dakota Territory border in 1876 and began working for the Northern Pacific Railroad (NPRR). F. J. Haynes was designated the “Official Photographer of the NPRR” before arriving at Yellowstone National Park in September 1881. Despite promotional efforts of the NPRR and guidebooks published as early as 1873, fewer than 8,000 tourists visited the park before 1881. F. J. was assigned as photographer for President Chester A. Authur’s party in 1883 and received worldwide recognition for his work. He negotiated a concessionaire contract at Mammoth Hot Springs in 1883 and built a studio there in 1884.  F. J. established a network of Haynes Picture Shops in hotel lobbies and scenic locations through the park in the 1890s. Haynes Picture Shops sold an assortment of photographs, souvenirs, guidebooks and other sundry goods. The name Haynes became synonymous with Yellowstone National Park.

Jack Ellis (J. E.) Haynes was born in St. Paul, Minnesota in 1884 and spent 76 of his 78 summers in Yellowstone Park. He was actively involved in his father’s business at an early age and began working as a counter attendant in 1897 at the age of 12. He joined his father as a junior partner in the family business when he graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1908. Jack began editing the popular Haynes Guide in 1910. He was trained in photography by his father and was solely responsible for the Haynes photography business by 1914. J. E. Haynes assumed ownership of Haynes, Inc. when F. J. Haynes retired in 1916. This was the same year the National Park Service (NPS) was established and motorized transportation was authorized to operate in national parks. The era of horse-drawn transportation in national parks came to an end in 1916 and the general public was allowed to travel through national parks in their own automobiles. Visitation to national parks began to increase after WWI and the Haynes Picture Shops were in a good position to benefit.

Jack Haynes met Isabel Nauerth in 1930. Isabel had been the superintendent for the Yellowstone Park Lodge and Camps Company at Roosevelt Lodge. Jack and Isabel were married in 1930. Their only child, Lida Marie Haynes, was born in 1931 (IMAGE 5). The family moved from their winter headquarters in St. Paul, Minnesota to a home on South Tracy in Bozeman in 1942. Jack and Isabel wanted to live closer to their business interests in Yellowstone Park and chose Bozeman so Lida could attend school there. Lida attended Longfellow Elementary School and graduated from Bozeman High School in 1948. She was a state champion skier and an accomplished equestrian. Lida spent her entire life in and around Yellowstone Park and had worked in the business and at the Haynes, Inc. headquarters at Mammoth Hot Springs. She was given responsibility of managing the Haynes Photo Shop at Fishing Bridge, the largest Haynes retail shop in the park. Lida was trained in photography by her father and became a director and stockholder in the family business at the age of 18.

Tragically Lida Haynes was killed in an auto accident in 1952 at the age of 21. Lida was the only one in place to take over the family business. She was a well-known personality in the community and her death was a blow to not just Jack and Isabel but to the community as a whole. Lida’s parents said little about their daughter thereafter, but Isabel remained very sensitive about any mention of Lida until her own passing a few decades later. We were told by a friend of the family that Isabel constructed a shrine to Lida in the Haynes warehouse, located in the old Bozeman Brewery building at 700-800 North Wallace in Bozeman.

Jack Haynes owned and operated Haynes, Inc. for 46 years. He died in 1962 and Isabel continued to operate the business until 1968, when she sold Haynes, Inc. to Hamilton Stores, Inc.. The sale officially ended a continuous span of 87 years of active participation of the Haynes family in Yellowstone National Park. Isabel was an equal partner with Jack and was equally responsible for the success of the family business. She supervised personal matters, was responsible for inventory control, and managed communications between the various Haynes Photo Shops.


Isabel Haynes was a patron of the arts and a very generous person. She was personal friends with several artists who sold their works in the Haynes Photo Shops. One of her close friends was Olive Fell, an artist from Big Timber. Olive produced an etching of young girl with a strong resemblance to Lida holding a teddy bear that hung on the wall in Isabel’s sitting room in her home on South Tracy. Isabel established the Haynes Hall, Montana State University’s art building, in honor of her husband, Jack. She donated more than 6,000 books in the Haynes family personal collection to Montana State University Special Collections. Isabel donated the extensive Haynes photographic collection to the Montana Historical Society in Helena. She also established the Haynes Foundation, a nonprofit charitable institution intended to distribute the income from the sale of the business and to fund scholarships to worthy students at several Montana universities and colleges. Isabel also made several donations to the Gallatin County Pioneer Museum. Isabel also donated several piece of original art to the Art Club at Bozeman High School. This 1934 photo shows Isabel and Lida Haynes with their close family friend William Henry Jackson. Jack and Isabel hosted Jackson in their Bozeman home on North Tracy when he visited Yellowstone in his later years.

Bozeman has enjoyed a long and important relationship with Yellowstone National Park for more than 150 years. Bozeman is the Northwest Gateway Community to Yellowstone and the Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport is the busiest in Montana, providing service to Yellowstone National Park and SW Montana. The Yellowstone National Park Research Coordination Network is based at Montana State University in Bozeman. This network is a collaboration of scientists and NPS staff to develop a coordinated research network focused on metagenome studies that have occurred in geothermal springs in and around the park. Many of the non-profits associated with Yellowstone National Park are based in Bozeman, including Yellowstone Forever and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. Bozeman serves as an important gateway community to Yellowstone National Park and will continue its role in providing essential services and access to the park in the 21st Century.