R[obert] U[nderwood] Johnson
Harriman — a call which resulted in a very kind and neither unsympathetic nor unpromising letter, though she made no commitment. I am now writing her to say that this new gift has been offered and asking if I may come to speak to her again.Just at this junction, you can be of great service if you will write her again and incidentally say a good word for me personally (as a trustworthy person and one who does my share in any enterprise) and for the need of such an in[illegible]tion for upholding ideals and standards. it is [moreover?] a great opportunity for any one who wishes to help American literature and arts.I am eager to get good news of you my dear friend. Put down November 18-21 for the New York joint meeting of Academy and Institute It will be a memorable occasion and we want you here. Something very special is in preparation. Believe me dear Muir with unchanging esteem, affectionately your comrade and friend,R.U. Johnson.[in margin: Private]327 Lexington AveNew York,March 26. 1914.My dear Muir:Osborn has told me of having seen you (I wish I had been in his place) and that you are getting happily over your long siege of the grippe. I am rejoiced at this and I beg of you to devote yourself to building up your health so that you may go on with your most important literary work.I hope you will not take too much to heart the apparent victory of the San Franciscans05728
that institution along lines of honor and usefulness so far as I can contribute as permanent secretary. See what has happened.Six days ago I went to see a gentleman of this city to interest him in the Academy. I succeeded! He has offered us a beautiful site and $100,000 to start the fund, and now I am foraging for the rest — for a donor of the building and for $500,000 more for maintenance, for we shall need an income of at least $30,000. Of course I shall have to have a living salary for the work of organization will be tremendous & continuous. (If I were able to do so I would decline a salary as I did that of the Secretary of the Copyright League).Now, this has occurred since I called on Mrs.in the Rape of the Hetch Hetchy. I sincerely hope (and with some confidence) that they may yet prevent the valley from going to the dogs. I feel just as badly as you, but I am learning not to fret over evil-doers. In fact I am mastering the demon of worry & concentrating on the beauty and kindness of the world. If I were willing to worry I could find plenty of justification in my treatment of others and in my loss of nearly a year in making my new start.But the light is breaking! We are about to realize my dream of an endowed Academy, I feel confident. If that is done, my activities thenceforth will go into the building-up of
1914 Mar 26
Original letter dimensions: 20.5 x 26 cm.
Johnson, Robert Underwood, "Letter from R[obert] U[nderwood] Johnson to John Muir, 1914 Mar 26." (1914). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 6521.
Reel 22, Image 0251
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