John Muir


[John Muir]


Mary [Muir]


[Original letter in possession of Mrs. Mary Muir Hand]

Oakland. Sep. 11, [1874].

My dear bra highland Mary:

I am off for an excursion into the Sierra again and so farewell. I hope you find the world full of light and love and color and that your life is clear to absorb and enjoy it.
I had a letter from Prof. Butler lately. You must go there at times. How do you progress with your painting? I have a friend here, W. Keith, a splendid artist with whom I wish you might practice. Yet I am glad you did not come out here. I dislike the town and most of the spirit that pervades it the more I see of it, and then all hopes of being long enough in one place to make anything like a home for you seems more improbable every day.
Work hard and continuously, for there is nothing like it. Yet be sure that you do not work fretfully and anxiously, for that is destructive to health, and see that you do not want for anything you require while for the sake of independence you practice economy. It is easier to practice a mean and hurtful economy than a wise and comfort making one.
Have you any friend in Madison that you can trust for counsel in case of need? I think Prof. Butler is true and faithful. Heaven bless you, my lassie, and cheer and love you as you deserve.

Fare ye well. Address Oakland as before.
[John Muir]

[Envelope addressed Mary Muir, Madison, Wisconsin, postmarked Oakland, Sept. 14, no year given]
[Year 1874 supplied, because Muir appears, from letters to Mrs. Carr of about this date, to have visited Oakland about this time]



Oakland [Calif.]


Original letter dimensions unknown.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 03, Image 0163

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The unpublished works of John Muir are copyrighted by the Muir-Hanna Trust.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, click here to view the Holt-Atherton Special Collections policies.

Owning Institution

John Muir National Historic Site. 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



3 pages



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