Louie [Strentzel Muir]
Saturday, Oct. 3, 1885,
We have just returned from Crete, and intend to take the night train to Kansas City at ten this evening; then if I am not detained by father, whose death may take place any hour, I shall start on the home trip via Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe, and Southern Pacific on Monday. Maggie is about as usual, and all her family are well. The two boys are fine, vigorous, good-natured, hopeful fellows, and the girls are bright and amiable and take all household cares off their mother's shoulders. John is rosy and kind and calm as ever. Maggie might have been prevailed on to come with me but I did not urge her much for reasons I will tell you when I come. I have stayed longer at Crete and indeed at every place than I had intended, but it is always a desperate fight to get away, giving only a day or two to each, while the whole time is already too great. The grapes, I know, demand a good deal of care, and my work is being done by you and the Dr. when I ought to be at home. And yet I have been making haste nearly all the time. David is still with me. I tried to make him extend his visit to Cal., but have not been successful, though he promises to make us a good long visit in a few years. Dan is quite like himself, and has evidently forgotten all his old whiff or tiff, or whatever you call it, and has been very cordial. We stopped with him two days on our way to Crete. Mrs. M. ,Emma, also seemed to take pains to make us comfortable and welcome. The four girls, the youngest Wanda's age, are very pretty and good-looking. The eyes of all are remarkably fine. The youngest is as pretty and bewitching a little miss as ever was seen. Dan has a fine practice, and is doing well, though not getting rich fast enough for his taste or ambition, or for his family. The eldest, Anita, is the only one that seems to have any of the Muirs in her.
I have just telegraphed to Kansas City to enquire how father is, hoping for an answer before I start tonight. We got a postal from Mary, who is still there, dated Sept. 30, stating that he is failing visibly every day, that he can no longer articulate so as to be understood, and that his death is looked for within a few days at most. I want Dan to go down with me tonight, and David also, who thinks of staying here a few days. For then all the boys would at length see him once more together and three of the girls. Dan says that he could do no good and that he would not be recognized, etc., but I tell him that he will regret not seeing him yet once more in the flesh, and I am urging him to go and turn over his patients to another Dr. for a few days. In case anything happens I shall write you again from K. C.
Hope grandma is improving and that the Doctor is not allowing the burden of the other ranch to bear too heavily on him. Tell Wanda that Aunt Maggie and Sady have sent some nice things for her, and that papa is very anxious to see his little girl again. Time flies fast,
1885 Oct 3
Original letter dimensions: 24 x14.5 cm.
Muir, John, "Letter from John Muir to Louie [Strentzel Muir], 1885 Oct 3." (1885). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 1636.
Reel 05, Image 0475
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