Jeanne [C.] Carr


[John Muir]


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[2]too large for a single life, and requires Eternity. But surely it is wiser to lay the foundations deep enough for a structure that shall outlast the fleeting years. In my private prayer book I find this petition - "Oh Lord help me to feel in my heart the leisure in which thou dost work thy works, and teach me the secret of that Labor which is not Toil." - a prayer for a woman whose life seems always to be used up in little trifling things, never labeled 'done' and laid away as a mans may be. Then as a woman I have often to consider not the lilies only, in their perfection but the humble, honest wayside grasses and weeds, sturdily filling their places through such repeated discouragements. I think I can sympathise in your sigh - "I shall die before I accomplish what I desire." Yes, dear friend, we have to die to[3]be what we seek, to gain what we pray for, and what faith does for us is to enable us to reach out joyously into that unseen future; to expect it as one of the things of tomorrow. I have thought much of you in reading lately of the life of Charles Goodyear, the "India rubber Man", whose whole existence was a battle with adversity. He does not seem to have lived so near the heart of Nature, or found her balms for his wounded spirit, but he was haunted with inventions. they tortured him sleeping or waking until he worked them into visible forms. A great mechanical ge- nius is a wonderful gift, something one should hold in trust for man- kind, a kind of seal & private mark which God has placed upon souls especially his own. For all these must look into the far future for[5]There is a very gay butterfly spor- ting about them while I write, and in the window a bundle of twigs with large chrysalids, which I look to for a supply of these winged blossoms in the dreary season. I have a hope of going out upon a farm near Madison with my boys, and bringing them up in the healthy exercise of all their faculties upon a farm. I think Dr Carr would be proud of sleek cattle & waving harvests that had the seal of his owner- ship upon them; while the return wave of the war has flooded Madison with so much wickedness that I long to be out of sight of it, and gives us a reason for making the change. We shall not go very far, and you will find us easily. Dear Mr Muir, I was very much gratified by your excellent letter, to which this is a very poor return


Sauk City, [Wisc.]

Date Original

[1865] Sep 24


Original letter dimensions: 17.5 x 23.0 cm

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 01, Image 0720

Copyright Statement

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Owning Institution

University of the Pacific Library Holt-Atherton Special Collections. Please contact this institution directly to obtain copies of the images or permission to publish or use them beyond educational purposes.

Page Number

Page 1


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