M. S. Griswold
[letterhead]WAUKESHA, WIS., Feb. 17. 1909John Muir, Esq.Martinez, Cal.My Dear old friend;I so address you, as an old friend of our school days of the university. Mr. John Howitt has just called on me and shown me your late letter to him and for your kindly remembrance of me therein [mentioned?] I most sincerely thank you.I have often been prompted to write to you, and especially after reading some of your graphic descriptions of nature scenery as found in various articles which have come to my notice. I have always read such with intense pleasure, and when reading them there always comes up before me the visit of our younger days, when we took our botanical trips around the lakes and woods of [illegible] county. What delight we [illegible] to experience in the haunts of the forests where we would meet with a new flower or some fossil among the rocks. I have yet the botanical specimens I there gathered, but the busy days of years past have prevented me from increasing them.04441 [letterhead]2The scenes amid which we used to wonder around [illegible]ion have greatly changed. The valley and summer homes have swept away the wild glories of old Rocky Point and other places of our youthful interest around Lake Mendota. But the University is still there, and has become one of the greatest institutions of learning now in the west. It is the Alma Mater of myself and of my two sons as well, one of whom graduated in 1905 and the other graduates in June next.The last of an old time instructors passed away with the death of Dr. James Butler, who, but a short time before his death, gave me an interesting account of your coming to his relief a few years before on an occasion when he found himself lost towards nightfall among the mountains in California.Since 1870 my home has been here in Waukesha, and I am now rounding out my 20[th?] year as County judge My official duties, as I have civil jurisdiction as well as probbate, have kept me continually busy, with04441 [letterhead]the exception of an occasional summer vacation in Minnesota, or down on the banks of the Hudson, or in New England.My enjoyment of life however remains and with it strenuous good health and vigor still. You probably remember I was quite a student in the languages- and the [information?] I get from Prof. Butler in Latin & Greek has never left me. I have kept up my studies in the cl[illegible]s as well as [delved?] into several of the [illegible] languages, and I have books of ancient lore that would stock up a professor's library. I now read daily from twenty to thirty pages of Demosthenes or Plato at my evening pastime in Greek - reading at sight- lexicons I hardly ever need now- and I [illegible]ly believe my [content inter course?] with the best thoughts of the best men of the past has much to do with keeping up my freshness and [illegible] of spirit, and keeping my [perspective?] f[illegible]s alert and [active?] for the fitting discharge of [illegible] my judicial duties.04441 [letterhead]On no other basis can I account for the fact, for it is a fact, that among the [illegible] [illegible] to our Supreme Court since I have been in my present [position?], I have a higher percentage of [illegible] then any other judge in the state.It has [never?] yet been my fortune to get out to the Pacific Coast - but I often think that if I could get there, the first effort I should make would be to find you, and with you renew the many pleasant remembrances of the past. Your love of science and nature never [flags?] - and it is that which doubtless contributes still to your own vigor as well as [illegible] and happiness. I heartily sympathize with your efforts to preserve Yosemite Park from the grip of the money power. and have been interested in what I have read relating to the matter in the Outlook & other periodicals. May I hope to hear from you sometime [illegible]![illegible] sincerely yoursM. S. Griswold04441
1909 Feb 17
Original letter dimensions: 28 x 21.5 cm.
Griswold, M. S., "Letter from M. S. Griswold to John Muir, 1909 Feb 17." (1909). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 5697.
Reel 18, Image 0234
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Environmentalist, naturalist, travel, conservation, national parks, John Muir, Yosemite, California, history, correspondence, letters