Katharine Hooker


John Muir


[1]3255 Pacific Ave.San Francisco, July 14My dear friendYour letter of June 26th was most welcome; it was full of sweetness and true affection and gave me just the news I wanted of you. Then I so enjoyed your account of the great ceremony! All the members of the family have listened to it with laughter and applause, and this morning I read it to Fred Yates (who is here with my brother) and he appreciated it fully. Fred goes east in two days to sail again for England and05074

[2]join his family.I have been in Santa Barbara and now am in San Francisco for a week, but return to Los Angeles in two days. [illegible] and Lucy leave for Yosemite tomorrow taking "The Mountains of California" with them, as usual when they go to the Sierras.I have a book from you--at least so the printed slip in the volume tells me. But I opened to a bare, blank fly leaf, with no heart-warming inscription upon it in you handwriting. Can this be? I don't see how it is to be let remain so! It is a fair volume,[3]2well gotten up and illustrated; but that cold and chilling print that tells me (along with so many other receivers, no doubt) that is is mine, and from the author--no, I don't think I can endure it.Are you well? Are you working too hard, I wonder? But, still worse, are you melting away into a barbarous and unknown land, almost as distant in my imagination as another planet? I don't like to think of it.You wish peace to me. I think it is coming to me--by degrees. I appear gradually05074

[4]to realize, to expound, to come to life as it might be. I began by being torpid and timorous--that is wearing away. There was little rebound at first, after the long strain. Then a night came when physically and mentally I had such strange sensations that I wondered vaguely if I were going to die. I remembered that it happened sometimes to people after a sudden great change, [even?] if it [were?] the change of relief.It is a pitiful thing, is it not, that the passing away of a man--a husband and father--whould leave relief behind, instead of grief![5]Marian is well but so busy and so closely tied to her present work that I cannot have much of her yet. On the fifth of August her hospital term is over and perhaps then we may go away to those healing mountains of yours for a time. I shall come back here to be at hand when she emerges.Very affectionately yoursKatharine HookerI should like you to call me Katharine rather than the formal "Mrs Hooker."


San Francisco

Circa Date

[1911] Jul 14


Original letter dimensions: 23 x 14 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 20, Image 0520

Collection Identifier

Online finding aid for the microform version of the John Muir Correspondence

Copyright Statement

Some letters written to John Muir may be protected by the U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.). Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.

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.


3 pages


Environmentalist, naturalist, travel, conservation, national parks, John Muir, Yosemite, California, history, correspondence, letters



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