Emily [O. Pelton]
is indeed a beautiful moss, and in springy woods covers old prosttr[illegible] trees in uncommon richness & grandeur. No 2 grows in wet and swampy places I frequently sank to my waist in beds of it when lost in that horrid Canadian swamp a year ago You ask Emily when I am going to return to the states. I think likely next summer or fall I may then complete my studies at the university - it seems as though I could not be contented with the little education I now have You seem to think that nature has designed me for an inventor - well, strange today, when your letter came I had just completed a bargin with my employers to invent a set of new machinery for the rake factory and also to manufacture a thousand doz of rakes - it seems as though I should be [illegible] inch - machinery whether I would or no - for the last three or four months I have been inventing machinery about [illegible] hours per day But Goodbye
My sincere regards to all my friends especially to Mr. [illegible] the Newtons and Mr. Wright. May I hear from you soon Truly your friend John Muir
Trouts Mills Nov '12th 1865
Dear friend Emily, I sincerely beg pardon for my gross carelessness in not writing sooner to ascertain whether or no you had quite recovered from your severe cold, I fondly hope that you have, and that now nothing remains to remind you of your long interesting journey some the deep flowing happiness which your visit to early friends and old home seems was sure to awaken. I am rally glad that you told me how your were. Your former lack of egotism is hardly now pardonable than my tardiness in writing when I knew you to be sick, but I though I had better wait until you should have returned home. I then became busy
almost to crazyness and neglected you till now. I suppose that you are now all home in the Mondele block among your friends, Have you seen or heard from Mrs Goodrich since your return, I would l9ike to hear how she is. I wrote her a letter shortly after receiving your last in care of Mr Pelton, thinking that he would know where she then was. How much I should enjoy a visit amongst you all - it begins to seem long indeed since I was at the [illegible]. when upon my first botanical walk, Has winter reached you yet. it has came down into our hollow and missed many of the fall plants ere they had time granted to mature their seed, and while many of the bushes and maples had but just began to show the mellow tintings of Autumn. I have not botan aged so much as manual this season I had one ramble among the rocks in the vicinity of Owen Sound I send you
a section of fruited found of a rare fern which is abundant in the wet limestone rocks there it is know in but one or two localities in the states. I shall give you a perfect specimen some day if you have not one already. there is another fern somewhat rare from the same place - Camptosarus [illegible] I would take pleasure in showing you my collection of ferns the eyes are so few that appreciate such beauties, I send you a few mosses I only began their analysis this fall and these are some of my first specimens Many of them are imperfect in some cases the male flower is wanting stil I assure you they cost one much labor as my land was of so low a power that I could scarely see the teeth of the peristone in some species, much less count & examine them perhaps you are already possessed of far better specimens. Ne[illegible] hangs in [illegible. loose patches from nearly every bush & maple in our woods. Hyp[illegible] No 1
[Near Meaford, Canada]
1865 Nov 12
Muir, John, "Letter from John Muir to Emily O. Pelton, 1865 Nov 12" (1865). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 1174.
Reel 01, Image 0734
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, click here to view the Holt-Atherton Special Collections policies.
Wisconsin Historical Society. Please contact this institution directly to obtain copies of the images or permission to publish or use them beyond educational purposes.
Environmentalist, naturalist, travel, conservation, national parks, John Muir, Yosemite, California, history, correspondence, letters