AAC Publications - http://publications.americanalpineclub.org

George E. Goldthwaite, 1890-1960


None loved better to walk in the hills of the Hudson Highlands and few knew more about them than did George Goldthwaite. So it seemed quite as George would have wished it that death came as he was on his way to his customary Sunday walk. His friends on the train thought he had fallen asleep. But it became apparent that this was no ordinary sleep— it was one from which there was no awakening. The strong heart, which even to his latter days carried him over the hills at a pace few cared to match, had given out.

George was a modest, quiet person and only a lot of conversation would give you a lead to what he had really done. A native of Indiana, he was a pilot and flight commander in World War I receiving a Distinguished Service Cross for his achievements. By training an electrical engineer, he was widely known and highly respected as an expert on rates, services and capitalization in public utilities.

In the outdoors the one word that came to everyone’s lips when George was mentioned was "speed.” He always traveled on the run, covering twice the distance most people could in the same length of time. With companions, however, he always moderated his pace to suit their ability. His climbing in the Tetons and the Canadian Rockies was done in the same impetuous manner. There was joyful vigor in everything he did.

George’s love of the natural beauties of the country made him always strong for their defense against the inroads of civilization. So it was natural that he should serve on the Conservation Committee as his major Club activity. His opinions carried great weight with those who knew how carefully he could document them for, no matter how strongly he believed in a cause, he never let fanatical emotion blind him to the practicalities of the situation.

His many friends will miss George—a good companion and a mountaineer who climbed for the pure joy of climbing.

Percy T. Olton, Jr.