John Torrey


John Torrey


daughter [name unknown]


[illegible] letter of Jan. 4, 1874 [illegible]
also Sept. 11, 1872
Letter of [illegible] Sept. 28, 1892

San Francisco,
August 25th, 1872.

My dear daughter:

We arrived here on the 9th inst. after a ride on the oars of 3,300 miles with less fatigue than you and I experienced in some of our travelling last spring. The whole journey was intensely interesting - of which I shall have much to tell you when we meet. Remaining in 2. Fr. four days (one of which was Sunday), and wishing to visit the Yosemite before commencing our business at the Mint, ,we left on the 13th for that celebrated and remarkable place,and remained there nearly four days, visiting some of the most interesting localities. The journey to and from the Valley was easier than when I went there seven years ago. We had only about 12 miles of horseback instead of about 50 in 1865, but the descent and ascent of about 5,000 feet over a very steep and rough bridle-path was not at all improved. To visit, on horseback, the various points is also very laborious; but the grand views that are thus obtained amply repay the cost. In the Valley I met with Mr. John Muir, a Scot, who has resided there more than three years, making observations on the geology, and showing clearly, as he believes, that this deep excavation was made by glacier action - when the slowly moving ioe, reaching thousands of feet above the highest mountains, - ploughed out the valleys, the present border of high peaks, domes, etc. being only the harder portions of the rook. This Mr. Muir is a second Hugh Miller, for he was a common workman, and is self-taught. I met people that I knew in all the places that we halted at along the road — among the YA: rest Rev. Br. Hall of N.Y., who with all his family had just left the Valley. we encountered them in a narrow pass on the side of a mountain, and it was with difficulty that we got by each other. I told you about Mr. I.H.Redfield and daughter joining us at Cheyenne, on their way from Colorado Mountains. They went with us to Yosemite and we put up at the same hotels. They are with us here at the splendid Hotel called the Lick House. I cannot tell for a few days what our movements will be, but I shall Inform Herbert when I know. I was very tired when we returned from Yosemite late last evening, but am now quite bright. This morning I heard Rev. Dr. Stone preach and this afternoon Dr. Hall. Give much love to Herbert and the "boy". Remember me to "Henry".

Your loving father,


On my return from the Valley I found a number of letters waiting for me -among. them yours of the 7 inst. & Herbert's of the 10th.



San Fransisco

Date Original

1872 Aug 25


Original letter dimensions unknown.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 02, Image 0883

Collection Identifier

Online finding aid for the microform version of the John Muir Correspondence

Copyright Statement

Some letters written to John Muir may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

Owning Institution

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


1 page


Environmentalist, naturalist, travel, conservation, national parks, John Muir, Yosemite, California, history, correspondence, letters



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