Riverby, West Park, N.Y.November 11,1914My dear Mr. Muir,Here I am living in the little cottage at "Riverby", formerly occupied by Mr. Burroughs's son and family, and just a stone's throw from the big house where Mr. and Mrs. Burroughs live, and they take their meals with me. It is charming here by the river, and is even prettier than my little chalet at Pelham where you came for that flying visit on J. B's seventieth birthday. We heard this summer that you were not very well, then later we heard that you were better, but of late we have heard nothing from you, and I have been on the point of writing you many times this summer; but between the domestic duties at Woodchuck Lodge, and the typewriting, and entertaining of guests, and reading the horrible war news, the days have flown by, with my intentions never materializing. Mr. Burroughs said several times this spring, "I wish you would write and get John Muir out here for the summer in the mountains." I always meant to try, but the truth is, I felt the hopelessness of the thing. Had I really felt that any thing we might write would bring you, I would have dropped everything and written a letter a day until you came. But you are " gey ill" to persuade, and I never should attempt it, only I wish you would persuade yourself that you want to come to us for another summer, and then come, and if you don't learn to love the broad-backed hills of Delaware County, and the wide valleys, and if you don't enjoy the glacial tracings on the Catskill rocks, albeit they are not such tremendous affairs as your noble El Capitan and Half Dome, it will be because there is no place in your nature for the love of the gentler aspects of Nature-- a thing which you cannot make anyone believe who has seen you pluck a tiny [illegible] densa from the rocks, and who has read what you have written about the water ouzel!I wish you would take time to drop us a line as to how you are, entirely apart from what I am now to write to you. Concerning this proposal, if you cannot comply, don't take the trouble to write more than to signify that fact, but I am hoping that Barkis will be willin! so here goes for explanation:Mr. John Lewis Childs of Floral Park, N.Y, the great flower and seed man, an old friend of J. B's, a sound business man, an enthusiastic nature lover, and a great lover of children, is going to start a school magazine, to interest and help children between the ages of five and fifteen. It is to cover nature-study, athletics, gardening, hygiene, morals, travel, short stories, hints and helps in work and play, etc. I have agreed to be its editor. He has the names of John Burroughs and two other people of note in their particular fields as contributing editors, and, as he is a personal friend of Roosevelt's, hopes to get his name to add to the list. He wants very much to have your name as contributing editor also, which will entail no burden upon you, but simply means that you will send us a short article once in a while, the oftener the better, for which you will be paid as for any magazine article. Please say yes to this, for we are going ahead with the Prospectus, and would like to put your name down with the others.Mr. Childs has been revolving this scheme a long time and has been in communication with hundreds of teachers who assure him that there is a real need for such a magazine, even in this day of multitudinous magazines. He is going to make the subscription price so05879
Riverby, West Park, N. Y.
1914 Nov 11
Original letter dimensions: 26.5 x 20.5 cm.
Reel 22, Image 0777
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