May 28th., 1902.
John Muir, L.L.D.,
Will you kindly AID us in preparing a complete and accurate biography, of about one thousand words, BY SENDING a full account of your life and work, making brief mention of your family history; or by INDICATING THE SOURCES from which such authentic data may be obtained; or by expressing a willingness to be interviewed regarding the insertion of such a sketch in our great National Biography.
The National American Biography, with its features of public interest, and value, when completed, will reflect credit upon our country. It is being prepared on the same high plane as Leslie Stephen's great Dictionary of National Biography, which "will last as long as the English language."
Twenty artistic volumes of this authentic work will be published, and EVERY NAME ADMITTED must first be acceptable to our National Advisory Council, the sixty members of which are of the HIGHEST STANDING, and were chosen from thirty-five States, and fifteen different professions. They have signed contracts, covering a period of five years, to pass upon names considered entitled to a place in our National Biography; and also, as Contributors, to furnish original estimates of those worthy of mention. Serving on this Advisory Council are Nine U.S. Senators, fifteen Governors, four Bishops, twelve Presidents of our leading Universities, three Rear-Admirals, etc; a few of whom are:
Hon. J. C. Burrows, U. S. Sen. from Mich.
Hon. S. M. Cullom, U. S. Sen. from Ill.
Hon. J. P. Dolliver, U. S. Sen. from Iowa.
Hon. George P. McLean, Gov. of Conn.
Hon. James B. Orman, Gov. of Col.
Hon. R. Fenwick Taylor, C. J.,
Supreme Court of Florida.
Rear-Adm. Robley D. Evans, U.S.N.
Noah Brooks, Esq.,
Author and Journalist.
Daniel Chester French, Sculptor.
Joseph Jefferson, M.A., Actor.
Hon. Carroll D. Wright,
U. S. Comm'r. of Labor.
Maj.-Gen. James Longstreet,
Soldier & Statesman.
Rt. Rev. Wm. C. Doane, D.D., LL.D.
P. E. Bishop of Albany.
Rt. Rev. C. D. Foss, D.D., LL.D.
M. E. Bishop, Philadelphia.
Rev. Charles H. Parkhurst, D.D.,LL.D.
Pastor Mad. Sq. Pres.Ch., N.Y.C.
Rev. Francis L. Patton, D.D.,LL.D.
Pres. Princeton University.
David Starr Jordan, LL.D.,
Pres. Leland Stanford Jr. Univ.
William H. Welch, M.D.,
Johns Hopkins University.
Prof. Crawford H. Toy, LL.D.,
Rear-Adm. Henry Glass, U.S.N
As the result of this expensive yet gratifying feature, will undoubtedly make our National Biography the MOST SELECT ever published, we trust you will grant the above request at an early date. A copy of your biography will be submitted to you for correction before going to press.
Yours very truly, [illegible]
N.B--We would be glad to have your photograph on file, one suitable for reproduction in an historic work of this character. It should be endorsed with your autograph for identification, and if not used, will be returned at your request.
1902 May 28
Original letter dimensions: 27.5 x 21.5 cm.
Baldvin, Henry, "Letter from Henry Baldvin to John Muir, 1902 May 28." (1902). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 4675.
Reel 12, Image 0438
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Environmentalist, naturalist, travel, conservation, national parks, John Muir, Yosemite, California, history, correspondence, letters