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99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall ...

99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall ...

Today we continue documenting the annual vacation odysseys of the Red Chevy family from Great Falls with a 35mm Kodachrome titled: "Great Divide at Kicking Horse Pass, Yoho National Park, Alberta, Canada. July 18, 1961." I found these on eBay — picture after picture of the family car, a 1960 Chevrolet, every summer from 1960 to 1964. More below, including the actual kids. View full size.


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Great Divide Marker

The marker is still there on the old, now closed highway from Lake Louise west. It can still be seen by hiking in or biking fom Lake Louise townsite.


The Great Falls Tribune should publish a couple of these pictures to see if anyone can identify the family. Their house is in the area of 25th Avenue N.E. I used to live very near there.

Tag Number

Actually, from 1959 thru 1966 there was only one plate change in Montana. Many other states were still issuing annual plates, but the plate in this photo is a 1959 base plate with a white-on-black 1961 metal tab. In '62 there was a white-on-blue tab, then in '63, Montanans got new plates. The plates were still black on unpainted aluminum, but they had a "Treasure State" slogan at the top (the '59 base has no slogan). These were used for four years.

Yoho National Park

While our friends from Great Falls may think that Yoho Park is in Alberta it is actually in British Columbia and until they pass under that sign (no doubt long gone although it's been years since I've been there) they are in Banff National Park. Banff National Park was created in 1885 but was much smaller than it is today, while Yoho was created in 1886. Banff would expand several times before it reached its current size. Part of the reason why the two parks weren't merged at any point in their history has to do with provincial jurisdictions and laws. British Columbia was a province at the time the parks were created while Alberta was part of the Northwest Territory and mostly under federal control until 1905. The road that they're driving on was improved and became part of the Trans-Canada Highway in 1962, which presumably is when the sign came down.

Tag Number

The licence plate changes? 2.29946 and 2.15419 in the other shots.

[There would be a different tag, and number, every year. - Dave]


I've scanned many collections of tourist slides from the 50's and 60's, rarely do they look this good. Who ever took this knew what he was doing; the camera was level, the composition is good and the exposure is good. What a surprise!

And I love the car too.

[Let's not overlook their masterpiece. - Dave]

red chevy wagon

memories. we had a blue 60 chevy wagon. though no pictures i believe exist. i remember the back seat being folded down so my brother i could sleep on our way to chatham on cape cod for our summer vacation, move from greenwich, ct to central florida in nov 63. the decision to get rid of it in 68 after mom slammed on the brakes, putting her high heel through the floorboard. the car was affectionally called the winter haven garbage truck. thanks

Red Chevy Family 2

You probably are right

Red Chevy Family

one of them may have put them on e-bay?

[My guess is that someone died and there was an estate sale. Maybe someone with a DMV connection can run the plates. - Dave]

Calling The Red Chevy Family

We need to reconnect these people with their photos. Odds are that at least some of the kids in the next photo are still around somewhere. And they're probably wondering where their old family vacation photos are. In that old trunk in the in the basement? Maybe in a shoebox in the attic? No, they somehow ended up on this website.

This is where the internet is such a great thing. Somebody out there knows the Red Chevy family. They lived down the street from them or went to school with these kids in Great Falls. If they don't get their slides back they should at least know where they are so they can come and visit them.

Great Divide

Oh, man! I remember that old Great Divide marker! That brings back memories... There's a much smaller, less cool marker now. One that lets the big rigs fit through...


Here's the approximate location on Yahoo Maps. (Here's the same location on Google Maps.)

the little car that could

Dave, are you going to map its travels?

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