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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945

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Offline bdann

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« on: May 30, 2006, 07:41:10 PM »
From Life Magazine, September 1945:


Big Bend - A Texas Wonderland Is The Country's Newest National Park
"American motorists, resuming their highway wanderings, now have one more natural wonderland to explore than they had before war clamped down on their gasoline.  The new wonderland is Big Bend National Park, the last great wilderness in Texas.  Big Bend's 780,000 acres, which make it the fifth largest national park, lie along the Rio Grande in the state's southwest corner.  It is the newest national park, having opened in June 1944.
On these pages LIFE gives vacationers a look at the great and curious beauty they will find in the Big Bend country, which takes its name from the huge U-turn the Rio Grande makes 200 miles southeast of El Paso.  Big Bend is at its best in late spring, when the rains bring desert flowers into bloom.  Nowhere else on the continent is there so wide variety of plant life, which ranges from the subtropical cactus and mesquite in its arid lowlands to the hardy Douglas fir trees on it's 8,000-foot Chisos mountain range.  Down in the desert live peccaries and rare hummingbirds.  Up in the mountains are lynx and golden eagles.  The Basin of the Chisos (pronounced Chee-sauce), or "Phantom," Mountains is in the heart of this vast virgin tract.



MARISCAL CANYON was formed by the Rio Grande cutting through Mariscal Mountain.  It has never been completely surveyed, is about 12 miles long, with rapids in some parts so fierce that in floodtime no one can get through.  This is one of the deep, quiet stretches where varicolored cliffs rise hundereds of feet out of the shadowed water.


THREE YUCCAS stick up out of the desert of Dagger Flats.  Big Bend's yuccas are sometimes called "daggers" because of their sharp leaves against heavy hay-colored trunk.

CENTURY PLANTS are common in the park.  In the background are some of Chisos Mountains, which will be the site for summer tourist cabins when the park is completed.


PRICKLY PEAR CACTUS in yellow-green hue blends with the green of the desert scrub seen in the background.

PURPLE-TINGE CACTUS gets its name from pinkish-purple hue.  Needles are longest of three similar cactus varieties.

LECHEGUILLA, which is a member of the Amaryllis family, has strong fiber that the Mexicans weave into baskets.


ON THE BORDER, at the southeastern end of Big Bend National Park, the Rio Grande rolls around the sand-locked town of Boquillas, Mexico, then cuts a canyon in the Sierra del Carmen, whose steep escarpment looms in the background above.  All people on U.S. side of river were moved out of Big Bend when it became a national park.

There are two more pages, which I'll post when I get the chance.
« Last Edit: December 14, 2007, 10:48:08 AM by bdann »
WATER, It does a body good.

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Offline 01ACRViper

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #1 on: May 30, 2006, 08:06:27 PM »
very interesting

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Offline homerboy2u

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #2 on: May 30, 2006, 08:22:41 PM »
Very very interesting, Mr. Bdann...when's the rest :?:
Stay thirsty, my friends.

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SHANEA

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« Reply #3 on: May 30, 2006, 08:24:31 PM »
Casa Grande looks taller and meaner back then.

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Offline Roy

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2006, 08:47:49 PM »
The campground looks the same;  Mariscal hasn't seen that kind of water on a regular basis for since they built those dams along the Concho.  Was it 2004 when the Rio ran dry there?

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BigBendHiker

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #5 on: May 30, 2006, 08:48:28 PM »
Neat pictures and article.  Thanks for sharing.


BBH

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Offline bdann

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #6 on: May 30, 2006, 09:04:03 PM »
Quote from: "homerboy2u2"
Very very interesting, Mr. Bdann...when's the rest :?:


I'll work on the rest tomorrow.  It took me awhile to figure out the best way to scan these.  A Life magazine page is way bigger than my scanner!
WATER, It does a body good.

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chisos_muse

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #7 on: May 30, 2006, 09:31:37 PM »
Wow that's pretty cool, bdann!

How things have changed, though....more acreage, "Chee-sauce" :lol:  :lol: , "Lynx" instead of Bobcat...

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Offline bdann

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #8 on: May 30, 2006, 10:31:11 PM »
Quote from: "chisos_muse"

 "Chee-sauce" :lol:  :lol:


I liked that one too!  Not sure if that's "correct" or not, but I've certainly never heard it.
WATER, It does a body good.

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chisos_muse

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #9 on: May 31, 2006, 07:37:44 AM »
Hey Brian! :D  (bdann)

You're 3 away from choosing you're personal little animal! 8)

Ya better get on it!

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chisos_muse

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #10 on: May 31, 2006, 07:40:15 AM »
Speaking of which.....

Our beloved "BBH"...uhmmm.....are you still thinking of yours? (400 posts and STILL a mountain lion?) :wink:

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Offline Joe

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Re: The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2006, 11:31:47 AM »
Quote from: "bdann"
From Life Magazine, September 1945: Big Bend's 780,000 acres


This is great history!  Thanks for scanning the article, bdann.  Thought I'd throw in my 2 cents - the park used to be 708,000 acres, not 780,000.
The real desert is a land which reveals its true character only to those who come with courage, tolerance and understanding. - Randall Henderson

http://www.bigbendchat.com/portal/forum/el-saloacuten/joe-a-memorial/

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Offline uh_clem

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The Country's Newest National Park - LIFE Sept 1945
« Reply #12 on: May 31, 2006, 04:02:34 PM »
Nice article, thanks for posting.
I'll be the jump start for the car parked in your mind, 'Cause you left the lights on all night long.

 


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