John Muir


John Muir


Louie [Strentzel Muir]




July 4th 1889

Dear Louie

I'm pegging away & have [invented?] a few good lines since coming here but it is a hard subject & goes slow. However I'll get it done somehow & sometime. It was cold here last evening & I had to put on everything in my satchel at once. Saw Mrs. [Porteous?] in the Viennese Restaurant. She sends her love & wishes to be remembered & is very anxious for a visit from you & the children. Last evening an innocent looking Examiner reporter sent up his card & I really [illegible]




told the boy to let him come up. He began to speak of the Muir glacier but quickly changed the subject to horned toads snakes & gila monsters. I asked him what made him change the subject so badly & what there was about the Muir Glacier to suggest such reprobate reptiles! He said snakes were his specialty & wanted to know if I had seen many etc. I talked carelessly for a few minutes & judge of my surprise in seeing this villanous article - "John Muir says they kill hogs and cat rabbits but dont eat hogs becuase too big etc" What poetry!




Its so perfectly ridiculous I have ad least had a good laugh out of it. "The toughness of the skin makes a difference" etc. - should thing it would. The air has been sulphurous all day & noisy as a battlefield. Heard some band musci but kept my room & saw not the procession. Hope your finger is not going to be seriously sore & that the babies are well. I feel nervous about them after reading about thsoe geological snakes of John Muir. Give my love to Cousin Fannie




& tell her to help watch the children while Im away. My room is better than last & I might at length feel at home with my Puget sound scenery had I not sun & had nerves shaken with those Gila monsters - I hope Ill survive though the Examiner makes me say "If the poison gets into them it takes no time at all to kill them" (the hogs) & my skin is not as think. Remember me to Grandma Grandpa & the babies & tell them not the sad story of the snakes of Fresno. Ever yrs

John Muir



Grand Hotel, San Francisco, Cal

Date Original

1889 Jul 4


Original letter dimensions: 24 x 15 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 06, Image 0117

Collection Identifier

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

Copyright Statement

The unpublished works of John Muir are copyrighted by the Muir-Hanna Trust.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, see

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.

Copyright Holder

Muir-Hanna Trust

Copyright Date



2 pages


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



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