This week marks 150 years since Abraham Lincoln signed the Yosemite Land Grant. The grant protected and preserved the park’s exquisite beauty for generations.

Yosemite has a very close relationship with photography. The park has been vital to the birth and growth of the art form since its birth.

In honor of Yosemite’s birthday, here is a selection of images from the Library of Congress’s Prints and Photographs Division:


Circa 1902: Nearly a mile straight down and only a step from Glacier Point and across valley to Yosemite Falls. (Underwood & Underwood/Library of Congress)

June 2013: Yosemite National Park spans eastern portions of Tuolumne, Mariposa and Madera counties in California. (Carol M. Highsmith/Library of Congress)

June 2013: Yosemite National Park spans eastern portions of Tuolumne, Mariposa and Madera counties in California. (Carol M. Highsmith/Library of Congress)

Circa 1871-1878: Section of the Grizzly Giant is 33 feet in diameter, Mariposa Grove, California. ( Carleton E. Watkins/Library of Congress)

Circa 1865: North Dome, Yosemite, California. (Carleton E. Watkins/Library of Congress)

Circa 1871-1878. ( Carleton E. Watkins/Library of Congress)

Circa 1903: President Theodore Roosevelt amid nature’s rugged grandeur on Glacier Point, Yosemite. (Underwood & Underwood/Library of Congress)

Circa 1865: Yosemite Valley, California. (Carleton E. Watkins/Library of Congress)

1991: Stoneman Bridge, spanning Merced River on Stoneman Crossover Road, Yosemite Village. (Brian C. Grogan/Library of Congress)

Circa 1902: The Valley from Eagle Peak, Yosemite. (Underwood & Underwood/Library of Congress)

1991: Stoneman Bridge, spanning Merced River on Stoneman Crossover Road, Yosemite Village, Calif. (Brian C. Grogan/Library of Congress)

Circa 1899: Panorama Yosemite (Library of Congress)

2001: Yosemite National Park Roads & Bridges. (Brian Grogan/Library of Congress)

Circa 1900: The fallen monarch, surrounded by Company F, 6th Cavalry U.S.A. at Mariposa big tree grove. (Library of Congress)

Circa 1910: Casket of Galen Clark and funeral party at grave site in Yosemite National Park. (Library of Congress)

Circa 1902: A party of camera “fiends” in Yosemite Valley. (American Stereoscopic Company/Library of Congress)

Circa 1902: Yosemite from Oak Flat grade, Boysen, Yosemite.(Library of Congress)

Circa 1901: Overhanging Rock at Glacier Point. (H.G. Peabody/Library of Congress)