These vintage photos of Yosemite National Park are incredibly cool

Happy birthday, Yosemite!

A Yosemite Park stagecoach with Bridalveil Fall in background. This is from the early 1900s.
A Yosemite Park stagecoach with Bridalveil Fall in background. This is from the early 1900s. (Getty Images)

This month marks Yosemite National Park’s 130th birthday -- which was Thursday, Oct. 1, really -- so we thought we’d celebrate by sharing some old photos of the California hotspot.

Yes, Yosemite National Park was designated by an Act of Congress on Oct. 1, 1890, making it the third national park in the United States, after Yellowstone (which happened in 1872) and Sequoia (1890).

We found this bit of history on the National Park Service’s website:

“Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove of Giant Sequoias have (actually) been preserved since 1864. Congress passed a bill, which was signed by President Abraham Lincoln on June 30, 1864, that set aside Yosemite Valley and the Mariposa Grove, that stated the lands be held ' … for public use, resort, and recreation … inalienable for all time.' This was truly the birth of the national park concept, since this was the first time in history that land was set aside purely for preservation and recreation for all people.”

Here are those photos:

A decal for the Yosemite Falls in Yosemite National Park, California, from 1955. (Getty Images)
The North Dome and Washington Tower, Yosemite, California, 1890. (Getty Images)
Some scenery along the Merced River, in the Yosemite Valley, California, mid-1870s. The mountain in the center right is known as Half Dome. (Thomas Houseworth & Co./George Eastman House/Getty Images)

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