Charles [A.] Keeler
Dunedin, N. Z.,
February 23rdf 1901.
My dear Mr. Muir:
Very often since we have been on this interesting voyage we have thought and spoken of you. Of course I have been constantly making comparisons of everything with Alaska and to speak of the Harriman Expedition is to recall my roommate during those two delightful months on the Elder. How you would enjoy this New Zealand country! The coast is not unlike the California shore - bleak brown hills over which the wind sweeps and the fog drifts - but in a week we shall be amid the wonderful lakes surrounded by snow-capped mountains, and with densely forested shores. I hope to visit Southerland Falls, 1900 ft. high, and anticipate much of interest in the excursions amid the mountains.
We spent over two months at Tahiti, studying the life of the tropics - the mountains and the plains covered with brilliant verdure, the sparkling sea of the brightest blue, the ring of coral reef encircling the lagoon, with white breakers ever dashing upon it, and the bright people so gentle and friendly in their ways, with bronzed skin and wreathes of flowers. It was beautiful and charming for a time, but the life of the tropics is so utterly corrupt that we were glad enough to be off exploring fresh fields and pastures new.
We have been hard at work, striving to portray the life we have seen. Louise has made over 60 drawings and I have written industriously. Our present plan is to remain three months in New Zealand, but beyond that we are uncertain. The Oceanic Steamship Company have written to London asking for our transportation home via London, visiting India and Egypt on the way. If this is granted you will not see us for many a long day, but if they refuse it we shall return by Samoa and Honolulu, reaching home about the first of August.
I hope you are well and writing away at your visions of mountain and forest. We should be most happy to have a line from you way off here, but in any event we feel sure you have not forgotten us in our flight across the seas.
With kindest regards to Mrs. Muir and the girls, from us both, believe me,
Very sincerely your friend,
Our address is
Care Union Steamship Co., Auckland, N.Z.
Dunedin, N[ew] Z[ealand]
1901 Feb 23
Original letter dimensions: 21 x 27 cm.
Keeler, Charles A., "Letter from Charles [A.] Keeler to John Muir, 1901 Feb 23." (1901). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 4392.
Reel 11, Image 0621
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