William F. Bade


[William F. Bade]


Theodore Roosevelt


[illegible]My dear Colonel Roosevelt:-It is with great hesitation that 1 write yon at this time regarding new aspects of the Hetch-Hetchy controversy. But a number of influential men out here, whose opinions on the Hetch-Hetchy project 1 share, have urged me to bring to your attention the grounds upon which officials of San Francisco nor; urge the acquisition and development of Hetch-Hetchy. By their own confession in public print they at this time repudiate the claims of public necessity by which they persuaded Mr. Garfield to make the grant, and at the same time concede (what in063182.Washington the same officials have always denied) that the use ofYosemite National Park as a water supply will involve the closure to thepublic of the five hundred square miles of the Tuolumne watershed.In the Pacific Unitarian (February, 1912), edited by Supervisor C.A. Murdook of San Francisco, he reports Supervisor Alexander T. VogelsangChairman of the Public Utilities Committee, as reporting as follows:"The City should acquire, as soon as possible, the whole of the Spring Valley water properties. When we shall have done this we will have the solution of the water question for all time. With the Hatch-Hetchy and lake Eleanor sources we will get a water power that private capital would capitalize for twenty million dollars. The power possibilities of the system should be fully and quickly developed."From the same official source, the San Francisco Chronicle (Feb.2, 1912) comments editorially:06318

3."The purchase of the Spring Valley, together with the lake Eleanor development to which we are committed, will give us a water supply greatly in excess of the needs of the present generation. While we want the Hetch-Hetchy in reserve, it will be half a century before we shall need to connect with it."In another editorial comment of the same paper (Feb. 14, 1912) the possibility of a double use of a drainage area devoted to the purposes of a domestic water supply is thus dealt with:"But there is no such possible use. In its nature the supplying of water for domestic use excludes all other uses, because the watershed cannot be contaminated."We think that this is another occasion on which your influence may be needed to prevent the destruction of a peerless valley and the diversion from public to municipal use of a large part of Yosemite National Park to satisfy the selfish desires of one community.063184.You may be interested to learn that California is enthusiastically interested in your campaign for the Presidency. One thousand copies of your book "Realizable Ideals" have been ordered for use in Southern California.With warm regards to Mrs. Roosevelt and yourself,Very cordially yours.WFB/F06318


[San Francisco]

Circa Date

[1912 Mar]


Original letter dimensions: 14 x 21.5 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 20, Image 0871

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.


2 pages


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



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