Victoria, B.C. Aug 3d 1880 3.45. P.M.
Dear Louie, The Vancouver roses are out of bloom hereabouts but I may possibly find some near [Naniamo?]. I mailed you a letter yesterday which you will probably receive with this. Arriving at Esqu[illegible]lt we hired a carriage driven by a sad eyed & sad lipped negro to take us with all our baggage to Victoria some 3 miles distant. The horses were also of melancholic aspect lean & clipper-built in general but the way they made the fire fly from the glacial gravel would have made Saint Jose & his jet bu[illegible] hide in the dust. By [illegible] of much [blunt?] praise of his team he put them to their wiry springsteel metal & we passed everything on the road with a whir cab [cart?] carriage & carryall. We put up at the Duard House & had a square or cubical meal. Put on a metallic co[illegible] to the land lord on account of the money & experience we carried, nearly scared him out of his dignity & made him give us good rooms. At 6.45 P.M. The California arrived, & we went aboard & had a chat with Hughes the purser. He at once enquired whether I had anyone
[in margin: 00940]
with me, meaning you as Vanderbilt had given our news. Learned that the Cal’ would not sail until this evening & made up our minds to take a drive out in the highways & byways adjacent to the town. While strolling about the streets last evening I felt a singular interest in the [Thlinket?] Indians I met & something like a missionary spirit came over me. Poor fellows I wish I could serve them. There is good eating but poor sleeping here. My bed was but little like our own at home. Met Major Morris the Treasury agent this morning. He is going up with us. He is you remember the writer of that book on Alaska that I brought with me. About 9 o’clock we got a horse & buggy at the livery stable & began our devious drive by going back to the Dakota to call on 1st Officer Griffith & give him a box of weeds for his kind deeds. Then took any road that offered out into the green leafy country How beautiful it is, Every road banked high & emborvered in dense fresh green Tall ferns 6 to 8 ft high close to the wheels, then [sperara?] 2 or 3 species, wild rose bushes, M[illegible], hazel, hawthorn, then a host of young Douglas Spruces &
[letterhead] Victoria, B.C. ………………………………….18 …………….
silver firs with here & there a few with its red berries & dark foliage, & a Maple or two, then the tall firs & spruces forming the forest primeval. We came to a good many fields of grain but all of them small as compared with the number of the houses. The oats & barely is just about ripe. We saw little orchards too a good many [pears?] little red brown fellows, six hatfuls per tree, & the queerest little sprinkling of little red & yellow cherries just beginning to ripen. Many of the cottage homes about town are as lovely as cottage may be, embo[illegible]d in honeysuckle & green gardens & lots of lawn & orchard & grand oaks with lovely outlooks, The day has been delightful how you would have enjoyed it all three of you. Our baggage is already aboard & hour [draws?] nigh I must go, I shall write you again from [Nanaimo?]. Goodbye again my love Keep a strong heart & speedily will fly the hours that bring me back to thee Love to Mother & father Farewell, Ever your affectionate husband John Muir
Victoria, B. C.
1880 Aug 3
Original letter dimensions: 27 x 20.5 cm.
Muir, John, "Letter from John Muir to Louie [Muir], 1880 Aug 3." (1880). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 572.
Reel 04, Image 0265
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