John Muir


[John Daniel] Runkle


image preview


[Page 1] Yosemite Valley April 3d 1872 Dear Runkle, I hope to hear from you soon. I know that you are exceedingly busy therefore I have not written you oftener during the winter. I am afraid the few letters I sent may have exacted too much of your time. Anything I sent with a view to publication wh you do not like, toss into wastebasket. How many letters have you received in all? I think I have sent ten since writing the first Glacier rambles. The last is an account of our earthquake storm which commenced March 26th and is still in progress. About a month ago I sent a short account of a journey to the Hetch Hetchy. A short article “Yosemite in flood” is in the April [issue]of the Overland. Our Glacier Study has been expanding all winter. It threatens to cover all the continents and much of the sea. The great earthquake has solved a minor question of debris slopes wh hitherto baffles all my efforts. It was not the mere existence of such slopes as that back of Hutchings hotel, but their synchronism that puzzles me. In my investigations of these slopes about Yosemite I had decided that not only had the principal mass of each slope fallen at one time, but that the different slopes had been made at one time. & While the ground was heaving, thumping, shuddering in its first stupendous passion, a before a single boulder reached the bottom of the valley the application of this new force flashed upon me, and I shouted “I have it.” Judge then of my joy when the incomparable song of the booming and roaring notes of the falling Eagle Rock began.


Yosemite Valley [Calif.]

Date Original

1872 Apr 3


Original letter dimensions: 25 x 20 cm.

Resource Identifier

1872 Apr 3 JM to Runkle

File Identifier

MSS 307 Muiriana

Copyright Statement

The unpublished works of John Muir are copyrighted by the Muir-Hanna Trust. To purchase copies of images and/or obtain permission to publish or exhibit them, see

Owning Institution

John Daniel Runkle Papers, MC 7, Institute Archives and Special Collections, MIT Libraries. Please contact this institution directly to obtain copies of the images or permission to publish or use them beyond educational purposes.

Copyright Holder

Muir-Hanna Trust

Copyright Date


Page Number

1872 Apr 3 JM to Runkle p1


John Muir, correspondence, letters, author, writing, naturalist, California, correspondent, mail, message, post, exchange of letters, missive, notes, epistle