R[obert] U[nderwood] Johnson
May 17th, 1894.
R. W. GILDER, EDITOR.
R. U. JOHNSON,
C. C. BUEL,
My dear Muir:-
I have been so overcrowded with work of different kinds - some of it in the office, and a good deal of it outside - that I have not been able to write you (pro forma) in regard to your article on the Discovery of Glacier Bay. The fact is he have been expecting before this to get it into the magazine; but other imperative things have kept it out. We did expect to get it into the July or August number. It is now down for September, which is only a number or two away, as we work, and I hope very much that we can use it then.
I am, however, greatly disappointed that the illustrations are so inadequate to the text. They all look alike, and are somehow not very effective; but your article will have to carry them, and they are, after all, not discreditable.
I do not know whether you have noticed that we have been having a fight in this state to save the Adirondacks from the timber-cutting of our Forest Commission. First of all, the fight was in the Forestry Conference at Albany in March, and since that time we have been fighting in the Legislature somewhat. We finally succeeded in defeating a bill to per-
mit timber-cutting. It would be better for the State of New-York to pay $25 to keep every tree than to get $150 for each tree cut.
I have just made a formal suggestion to the Sierra Club that it take up a campaign for the recession of the Yosemite by the next Legislature. Of course a good deal of work would have to be done now, and it seems to me the Sierra Club ought to do it. They have already tested the feeling of the State in the direction of forest preservation and those of us who are most strenuously urging recession are the very people who have in the main been responsible for the forest reservation policy which is now recognized to be a great boon to California. I am sure that if three or four of you were to sign an appeal to the people in this matter, you could get signatures all over the State from influential men, and could make a strong impression upon the newspapers, and thus organize public opinion for recession. It is enough that at its best the State control has not proved a success, but has been a bone of contention; whereas the Yellowstone has been admirably managed by Government supervision.
I am now wondering whether we cannot get a start made in Washington in favor of transferring all these forest reservations to the War Department, and at the same time of establishing a chair of forestry at West Point in accordance with Prof. Sargent's suggestion. If I were in Congress I should
like nothing better than to try to push that reform through.
You will be glad to learn that Tesla is much improved in health, I took Burroughs down to see him, the other day, and they were very much taken with each other. Are you not coming east this summer? I hope so, for there does not seem to be any chance of his going west. If he goes away at all it will probably be to Servia for a month or two. The more I see of that man the more I like him and admire him.
You have reason to think that I have delayed for a long time my writing to you about your manuscript, but the fact is there is hardly anything to say. "The Discovery of Glacier Bay" is now in good shape, and if there is anything to suggest I will do it in proof. I have not yet given scrutinizing attention to the Alaska Trip, but I have no doubt that is all right too. I don't think we can use the Indian part, as we have several papers on Indians by Miss Fletcher which have been hanging on for months, even years, and we must give them precedence. Besides there is hardly enough of this material to make an article.
Do you not want to write out the dog and glacier story in your liveliest style? If you could dictate it it would be all the better, perhaps.
With apologies for my apparent neglect, (which is only apparent as you have been [illegible] on my mind) I am, believe me, my dear Muir, in hopes of seeing you here before long, and with kindest regards to Mrs. Muir,
Ever faithfully yours,[illegible]
Original letter dimensions: 26.5 x 21 cm.
Johnson, Robert Underwood, "Letter from R[obert] U[nderwood] Johnson to John Muir, 1894 May 17." (1894). John Muir Correspondence (PDFs). 6852.
Reel 08, Image 0265
Copyright status unknown
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.
University of the Pacific Library Holt-Atherton Special Collections. Please contact this institution directly to obtain copies of the images or permission to publish or use them beyond educational purposes.