"In any area in which the preservation of the beauty of Nature is a primary purpose, always design buildings that are not only attractive to look upon, but also appear to belong to, and be part of, their settings...” - Such was the guiding principle of park development promoted by Stephen T. Mather, first director of the National Park Service (1917-1929).
At Mount Rainier, designers selected massive logs and glacial boulders as the building materials best suited for integrating new structures with their natural settings. Entrance stations, administration buildings, employee residences, bridges... even comfort stations were all built to express the unifying characteristics of what is now known as National Park Service Rustic architecture. For many people, this impressive architectural style contributes to the special sense-of-place quality which makes national parks a distinctive part of the American landscape.
By taking the self-guided walking tour through Longmire, you will see one significant part of the Mount Rainier National Park Historic Landmark District. The district, designated in 1997, includes all the developed areas at Nisqually, Longmire, Paradise, Camp Muir, Sunrise, and White River; all roads, bridges, and associated features; the Wonderland Trail; and the park's wilderness structures.
This walking tour is an easy and approachable introduction to the historic structures of Mount Rainier National Park.