John Muir


John Muir


Alden Anderson


Martinez, July 13th 1904.


Dear Mr Anderson,

I have already met Major Chittenden Mr R. B. Marshall & Mr Frank Board & discussed with them the matters referred to in your letter to me affecting the Yosemite National Park. In general I am opposed to the changes that would dininish the area of the park. It should rather be increased. A small portion on the southwest corner where a few mines are located might well be cut off, provided this would not result in making the destruction of the forests on patented lands thereabouts easy & sure.
The private claims in the


sugar pine region, the best & most essential part of the park, should I think be taken up by government at a fair price or condemned. Whether this may be done or not I don't know.
No sooner are the boundaries of a forest reserve or park established than interested parties begin to try to break through them. In 1895 a determined effort was made to have the area of the Yosemite Park reduced nearly one half. The first & the smallest forest reserve I ever heard of was in the Garden of Eden. Its boundaries were drawn by the Lord himself & embraced only one tree, yet even so moderate a reserve as this was attacked. And I doubt not


if only one of our grand trees on the Sierra were reserved as an example & type of all that is noble & beautiful & useful in mountain trees it would not be long before you would find a lawyer & a lumberman at the foot of it trying to prove by every law human & divine that that tree must come down.
The Yosemite Valley in the heart of the park & essentially a part of it should I think be receded to the Federal government & put under one management thus ensuring great improvement in present conditions through increased appropriations for roads trails & expert work on the valley floor etc. Thus increasing


& facilitating travel to the advantage of the whole country.
Thanking you for your kind letter & invitation

I am with best wishes

sincerely yours

John Muir

Hon. Alden Anderson

Lieut. Governor.




Martinez [Calif.]

Date Original

1904 Jul 13


Original letter dimensions unknown.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 14, Image 0354

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The unpublished works of John Muir are copyrighted by the Muir-Hanna Trust.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

The Bancroft Library, University of California at Berkeley. 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



4 pages


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



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