John Muir


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to Victoria. Here for the fourth time this year, I saw the glacial rocks and traces which seemed yet more fresh and telling in all that relates to the action of the ice-sheet; its course, the way it deposits the so-called glacial drift, excavates harbors and fiords, and brings landscape features in general into relief. Yet, strange to say, man, with his reason, builds his houses, grades streets, tills the glacial soil on the ground prepared by this mighty agent, where the phenomena are so strange and so striking as to attract and arrest the attention of animals, without once attracting his. So truly blind is lord man; so pathetically employed in his little jobs of town-building, church-building, bread-getting, the study of the spirits and heaven, etc. that he can see nothing of the heaven he is in. Place people who sing heaven and explore it so zealously here and they would still be seeking it without guessing for a moment their present whereabouts. The sail over to Port Townsend is interesting chiefly from the fine open display of the Olympic Range made to us from the deck nearly all the way across. At Departure Bay, a short distance to the North of Nanaimo, we went to coal. Here are located the Wellington coal mines which have sent so much excellent fuel to San Francisco. Coal is said to have been discovered at Nanaimo by the Indians about 24 years ago, and through them became known to the Hudson Bay Company who began to work it, but in 1861 sold it to an English Company now known as Vancouver Colliery. The Vancouver coal measures (cretaceous) are said (by Mr. Richardson who has {Sketch: Near the N.W. end of Vancouver Island. Wint on passage, Johnson strait}

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Original journal dimensions: 8.5 x 13.5 cm.

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Holt-Atherton Special Collections, University of the Pacific Library

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John Muir, journals, drawings, writings, travel, journaling, naturalist