The Three Sisters, Canmore, Canada about 1892

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THE THREE SISTERS, CANMORE, CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY — The scenery along the Canadian Pacific Railway is, at certain points, magnificent. Snow-covered mountains, deep ravines, sparkling cascades and lovely valleys succeed each other, mile after mile and hour after hour, in the neighborhood of the Rocky Mountains. At Canmore an observation car is attached to every train to permit the passengers to enjoy an unbroken view of the varied and imposing panorama visible on either side. A prominent feature of it is that group of mountains known as the Three Sisters, beyond which other peaks arise, like suitors, to attend them. It is impossible for photographic art to give any adequate idea of the scenery on this splendid route to the Pacific. Sometimes so narrow is the gorge that no possible outlet is discernible; but in a moment more an unexpected turn or gloomy tunnel transports the long-drawn, swiftly moving retinue of human lives into some new and still more glorious surroundings. From valleys beautifully fresh and green rise countless mountains 9,000 or 10,000 feet in height, their sides and summits silver-white with snow, rolling away, one peak beyond another, to meet the sky, as crested waves might look to occupants of a little boat tossed in the hollows of a stormy sea. The forms of these wild mountains also offer infinite variety; being at times pyramidal, at other times resembling castles with projecting towers, or huge cathedrals with their flying buttresses and slender spires; while glittering glaciers, too, occasionally reveal themselves like jeweled highways of the Gods. (from John L. Stoddard, Glimpses of the world; a portfolio of photographs of the marvelous works of God and man – 1892)

The Three Sisters are a trio of peaks near Canmore, Alberta, Canada. They are known individually as Big Sister (Faith), Middle Sister (Charity) and Little Sister (Hope). It was Albert Rogers, a nephew of Major Rogers, who named the three peaks in 1883. He recalled, “There had been quite a heavy snowstorm in the night, and when we got up in the morning and looked out of the tent I noticed each of the three peaks had a heavy veil of snow on the north side and I said to the boys, ‘Look at the Three Nuns.’ They were called the Three Nuns for quite a while but later were called the ‘Three Sisters,’ more Protestant like I suppose. The name “Three Sisters” first appeared on Dr. George Dawson’s map of 1886 and it is quite likely he who thought that the name Three Sisters would be more appropriate. The myth also refers to three nuns going for a walk one day and the three nuns never returned, also a reason the peaks are called the Three Sisters. (from Wikipedia)

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