American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

Paul Roper McIntyre, 1906-1936

  • In Memoriam
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1937

PAUL ROPER McINTYRE

1906-1936

Paul McIntyre was born June 25th, 1906, and lost his life on September 21st, 1936, in an automobile accident. He was graduated from Brown University in 1928, taking his A.B. in English, magna cum laude. In 1932 he received his LL.B. from Harvard, passing the Rhode Island bar examinations in 1933, heading a list of forty-two. He practiced law in Providence until the time of his death.

In recording McIntyre’s climbing career it is necessary to explain his background. His father, Joseph B. McIntyre, a manufacturer, was a graduate of Brown in the class of ’94, returning in 1916 for his M.Sc. in geology and botany. The elder McIntyre (A. A.C.) took his family to Glacier House every summer for nine seasons (from 1917 until the hotel was closed), where they were fixed stars in the galaxy ruled by Mrs. Young. The McIntyres would spend the entire season, June 15th-September 15th, occupying the same rooms at Glacier House during these years. Mr. McIntyre, Sr., at various times had ascended nearly all summits in the vicinity of Glacier House, and was the founder of the Sir Donald Club, the only “secret society” the Selkirks have ever known—the secret (which puzzled not a few) being not only that one should have ascended Sir Donald, but that one should be a good fellow as well. This was conceived in the summer of 1919, among its members being F. K. Butters, August Eggers, J. W. A. Hickson and Val Fynn.

Paul McIntyre, therefore, grew up with a love of mountain country, as the natural result of an unusual father-son combination. Fynn praised his ability as an agile climber, and his mountaineering is remarkable in that all of his ascents were made before he was twenty years of age. He never saw mountains again after the closing of Glacier House. His ascents were never written up, and our knowledge of them is limited to brief notes.

In 1921, at the age of fifteen, he climbed Afton, Avalanche, Eagle and Sir Donald. In the following summer he did Sir Donald up and down by the N. W. ridge, and made an attempt on it from the E. through the Uto-Sir Donald col. His great climb of Mt. Sir Donald by the W. face was accomplished in 1923, a traverse of Uto being the only other ascent recorded in this year. In 1924 he traversed the Asulkan range from Leda to Mt. Abbott, later traversing Rogers, Swiss Peak and Hermit. During a visit to the new hut in Glacier Circle he was the first to ascend Mt. Fox by the difficult E. ridge. In this season he also climbed Green’s Peak from Perley Rock in an attempt to repeat the Le Prince- Ringuet route on Sir Donald. In 1925 he revisited Eagle and also climbed Mt. Tupper. Christian Häsler or Ernest Feuz were his usual companions.

Paul McIntyre was possibly as much devoted to mountain travel as to climbing. From 1922 on he was a licensed guide of the Canadian National Parks, sometimes working for Brewster, but more often annexed by the R. C. M. P. to acquaint them with the various trails. He was an original member of the Trail Riders, with a mileage record in excess of 2500. His father and he joined the American Alpine Club in 1924.

After 1925 his summers were spent on Cape Cod. It is characteristic of him that, on learning of a seldom-visited lightship off Harwichport, he used his motor-boat once a week to deliver papers

to the crew, doing this for three seasons.

J. M. T.

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