John Muir


[John Muir]


Sarah [Muir Galloway]



Yosemite Valley Nov 2d 1875

Dear Sister Sarah, Here is your letter with the Dalles in it I’m glad you have escaped so long from the c[illegible] & sewing & baking to Gods green wild Dalles & dells for I know you were young again & that the natural love of beauty you possess had free fair play I will never forget the big happy day I spent there in the rocky gargy Wisconsin above Kilbourn City What lanes full of purple orchids & ferns. Aspedium fragraus I found these for the first time. & what hillsides of huckleberries & rare asters & golden rods Dont you wish you were wild like me & as free to satisfy


your love for whatsoever is pure & beautiful. I returned last night from a two & a half months excursion through the grandest portion of the Sierra Nevada forests You remember reading of the big trees of Cal[illegible]eras county discovered fifteen or twenty years ago, well I have been studying the Specied Sequoia Legantea) & have been all this time wandering amid those giants They extend in a broken in= =terrupted belt along the western flank of the range a distance of 180 miles, But I will not attempt to describe them here. I have written about them & will send you printed descriptions — I often feel alarmed about Joannas health. from what

[Page 2]


I can learn about her symptoms only the greatest care & skill will restore her to perfect health & I fondly hope that Dans efforts on her behalf will prove successful I fancy your little flock are growing fast towards prime Yet how short seems the time when you occupied your family place on Hickory Hill Our lives go on & close like a day morning noon night, Yet how full of pure happiness these life days may be & how worthy of the God that plans them & suns them The book you speak of is not yet commenced but I must go into winter, quarters at once & go to work While in the field I can only

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observe, take in but give nothing out. The first winter snow is just now falling on Yosemite rocks. The domes are whitened & ere long [deleted: will] avalanches will rush with loud boom & roar like new made waterfalls. Give my love to David & the children & Mr. Galloway & I will hope to yet see you all But now once more Farewell

The November number of Harpers Monthly contains Living Glaciers of Cala The illustrations are from my pencil sketches some of wh’ were made when my fingers were so benumbed with frost I could scarcly hold my pencil. This is the first paper on glaciers I have yet published


Yosemite Valley

Date Original

1875 Nov 2


Original letter dimensions: 20.5 x 25.5 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 03, Image 0335

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, click here to view the Holt-Atherton Special Collections policies.

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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