Collection 2481 - Elise Furer Musser Yellowstone and Alaska Tourist Letters, 1928
Creator: Musser, Elise Furer
Provenance Note: Elise Furer Musser's tourist letters from Yellowstone and Alaska were purchased by the Montana State University Library Special Collections from Theresa Franks of Phoenix, Arizona on July 1, 2005.
Historical Note: Elise Furer Musser (7 December 1877 - 30 August 1967) was a Utah state senator and prominent member of the Democratic party. She was born in Switzerland, converted to the Mormon Church in 1894, and moved to Salt Lake City in 1897 where she initially worked as a housekeeper. After a brief stay with a Mormon colony in Mexico, she returned to Salt Lake City where she married Burton W. Musser, an attorney, in 1911. They had one son, Bernard, in 1914. Mrs. Musser later became the Utah State Chairman of Democratic Women.
Content Description Note: Elise traveled with her family on vacation in July, 1928 from their home to a variety of places in Montana, Canada, and the Pacific Northwest. An articulate writer with a good descriptive style, she composed six letters to her "Grammie" while on the journey. She traveled with her husband, Burton, her son, Bernard, and two other children named Virginia, and Jeanne. The party began their journey in an automobile, but later used boat and train transportation to reach the more remote parts of their journey. Their route took them through Farmington, Logan, and Bear Lake, Utah; Jackson and Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming; Livingston, Bozeman, Glacier National Park, and Choteau, Montana; Cardston, High River, Calgary, and Banff, Alberta; Pend Oreille, Idaho; Seattle and Vancouver, Washington; Juneau and Skagway, Alaska; Bennett, and Lake Tutshi, British Columbia. Elise's description of Yellowstone includes her dismay over the conditions of the road, complaints about the hotel food service at the Lake Hotel, and an encounter with a mother bear and her cubs at Canyon Junction. The couple also mentions staying at Sargents' Inn at Daniel, Wyoming, the St. George Hotel at High River, Alberta, and at a lodge kept by Otto and Kate Partridge at Lake Tutshi, Northwest Territory. Elise mentions meeting the Partridges and Dr. E. G. Peterson, president of the Agricultural College of Utah (Utah State University) during her trip.