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American Road Magazine
Celebrating our two-lane highways of yesteryear…And the joys of driving them today!
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National Parks Highway - Grabow Hotel, Livingston, Mt

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Anyone who regularly travels our heritage highways knows that you meet the nicest people in the most unusual ways. I was driving through Livingston Montana, and had photographed the hotels in the 1917 National Parks Highway guide. I was a mile out of town when I realized I had missed the Grabow Hotel. I turned around and went back to town and took a grab shot from the car, then pull up in front of the hotel to take a closer look.

 

 

ARGrabow.jpg

 

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A woman standing down the sidewalk, on noting my interest in the hotel, asked if I had an interest in the building. I replied "Yes!", and clarified that I was photographing hotels along the National Parks Highway that had been recommended in the 1917 National Parks Highway Motorists Service Guide. She appeared pleased and she introduced herself as Patricia Grabow, granddaughter of the original owner!!!

 

 

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She invited me in and we had an all too brief talk. Had it been up to her I would have been invited to meet every worthy in Livingston, and some sounded pretty worthy! She was full of enthusiasm for Livingston, which has more buildings on the nation register than you can count......it is in the several hundreds.....and she is obviously much involved in the historical preservation of the town.

 

She has restored the hotel, and from a brief look at photos taken before the lovely restoration, she had quite a job, and did a superb job. I took some quick shots of the downstairs where we were chatting and she said it was OK to include a photo of her.

 

 

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I just couldn't stay and enjoy all the interesting things she offered, but I did promise to send her a copy of the guide. And this evening I discovered that the Grabow had a nice display ad in the 1920 Transcontinental Automobile Blue Book (and in the 1918 Montana edition, and perhaps others I'm not carrying), along with some other Livingston businesses.

 

 

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I will post this tonight and then try to get the rest of July 3 up tomorrow.

 

Thanks to Patricia and the Grabow for a great American road experience!

 

Dave

 

Keep the Show on the Road!

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This whole post just makes me grin from ear to ear. Not only do I love how the hotel has been restored, but I love how the photo in the ABB makes the hotel look like it's moved forward to today as if it has always been vital. Awesome!

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