James D[avie] Butler


John Muir


Superior, July 30, '94

John Muir.

My dear Friend.

How do I account for your sepulchral silence? You have gone to rescue Sheldon Jackson who, as I have noted, was stranded on some furthest shore while jeoparding his life as the apostle of the Aleuts. But you ought to be home by this time, from an enterprise like Stanley's plunge to bring up livingston from the depths of darkest Africa.
I am just landed here after an Itinerarium ecstaticum. As asked by the Am. Ant. Soc. of which since Bancroft's death I am among the half-dozen of longest standing. I addressed them at their Boston annual. I talked about a long-lost Journal of the Lewis and Clark overland. Interviews, which I had long desired with Winthrop, Holmes, and Norton. I had. My after-calls were many, in Wellesley, Natick, Worcester, Charlemont, Norwich, Brooklyn, Kinderhook, Bennington, Rutland, Woodstock, Burlington, Essex, etc. In all and in many more, I found old friends.--our here and there upon the rest abyss.--and thanks to youthful memories--we rejuvenated.


The Green Mts. are not sublime--but they are charming. Lake George which I went through for the 4th time.--I know not where it has a rival in islets multitudinous.
In Ohio I had a week with a sister five years my senior. Yet her hair is abundant and retains its natural color. After a Detroit visit with a friend made on the Nile in 1868.--I steamed hither on a steamer no whit behind the 24 which bore me round the globe. In electrics it is in advance of whatever was possible till these last years. Often have I made excursions on this chiefest among our ten thousand unsalted sea, but never before have I laid behind me all its 302 miles of length.
All my children are here. Here we abide till the heated term is over. Henry remembers with gratitude your early mouldings, and regrets that his visit to Everett was on flying wings.--which made it impossible to find you out. Let us hope the rebellion of the members against the belly is over.--and that no hand will say to the head, "I have no need of thee.

Very regardfully yrs.

James D. Butler.


Superior [Wisc.]

Date Original



Original letter dimensions: 27.5 x 21.5 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 08, Image 0343

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