History & Culture

Female ranger riding horseback
In 1918, Yosemite's Clare Marie Hodges became the first female park ranger in the National Park Service.

At first glance, Yosemite’s natural wonders are easy to observe. Sights around the park are iconic in the human experience of national parks. Beyond the rocks, plants, and animals, is a story about people in Yosemite written on that very same landscape. It tells a story of different cultures (sometimes working together, sometimes in violent clashes) creating the place we call Yosemite National Park and defining how we experience it. Yosemite’s rich human history tells a story of conflict, dreams, diversity, hardships, adventures, and preservation of one of the first national parks.

 
 
galen clark

NPS Historic Photo Collection

“I have seen persons of emotional temperament stand with tearful eyes, spellbound and dumb with awe, as they got their first view of the Valley from Inspiration Point, overwhelmed in the sudden presence of the unspeakable, stupendous grandeur.”

– Galen Clark, guardian of the Yosemite Grant

Last updated: September 20, 2017

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

PO Box 577
Yosemite National Park, CA 95389

Phone:

(209) 372-0200

Contact Us