John Muir


John Muir


[Louie Strentzel Muir]




July 15, 1896


Dear Louie,

I have just telegraph you to address letters to Spokane, Washington, Write yourself & tell Helen & Wanda to write. If you have sent letters here I will receive them as I will order them forwarded to Spokane our next address for a week or two. We have just come from the famous Yellowstone. The forests & waters hot & cold were in all their glory & we of course enjoyed them unspeakably.
Yesterday was very hot & we spent a horrible night in a sleeping car or choking cars rather today is also hot & it makes me anxious about you in our little valley.




I enjoy the compqany of the Commission especially of Sargent & Gen. Abbott. Pinchot is out here somewhere but we have not yet found him. though we expect to meet him soon. Sargent would like to go to Alaska but will probably not find time for the trip until next year. This hot weather makes one long for ice in the air as well as in drinking water In the worst heats of north winds you must promptly put Helen & the cats into the cellar & be very careful about drinking ice water. Cool the water but do not make it ice cold. I send you a clipping that appeared in last evenings paper.



here, one of many. Sargent told me that a very good notice of John Muir A.M. appeared in the Boston Transcript after the Harvard Commencement & that he intended cutting it out & sending it to me but forgot Probably Johnson has sent it to you as he forgets nothing in the way of business or kindness
Helena is set west like amed high bare hot hills. but soon we will be with the blessed mosquitoes & pines. Do take care of yourself & the children & northern & burn not my notes! Remember me to Maggie Heaven bless you all

Ever Your loving husband

John Muir


Several Members of the Commission Reached Helena this Morning from the National Park.

John Muir, the Distinguished California Scientist, is a Member of the Party.

They are Examining the Forests on the Public Lands---Will Leave Tomorrow.

A party of distinguished scientists arrived in Helena this morning from the Yellowstone National ‘Park and are domiciled at the Helena. They are a part of what is known in Washington circles as the forestry commission of the National Academy of Science--- learned men who are engaged by the government to advise upon various scientific subjects. As the name indicates, the forestry commission has to do with the timber interests of the country, examining the forests upon the public domain, reporting upon the character and growth of the trees thereon, and particularly making recommendations as to the best methods of preserving the same. There are in the neighborhood 17,000,000 acres of forest land in the possession of Uncle Sam, and the secretaries of the interior for successive administrations have endeavord by means of forestry commissions to ascertain a vast amount of hitherto unknown information respecting the same. This commission is making examinations of the timber interests of the far west with the view of recommending to Secretary of the Interior Smith the best policy to pursue with respect to the preservation of these millions of acres forest in the Rocky Mountains.
The party that arrived this morning consists of Prof. C. S. Sergent, of Harvard college, chairman; General H. S. Abbott, of the United States corps of engineers; Prof. Arnold Hague of the United States geological survey. and Prof. W. H. Brewer of Yale college. Traveling with the commission is Prof. John Muir, the California geologist. He is not in the employ of the government, but happening to be in the east when the party started for the west he accompanied it at the urgent request of several of the professors, who recognize in him one who knows the mountains almost like a book, and who on an evpedition of this sort would be an invaluable companion. His name is a household word on the Pacific coast. Every school boy in the west, if not in the east, is familiar with his vivid descriptions of Mt. Shasta and the story of his discovery of the famous Muir glacier, so named in his honor, in Alaska. He will rmain with the commission until it reaches the Pacific coast. Already the party has visited the forests in the Black Hills country and the in the Yellowstone Park: They will leave here tomorrow for Belton, Flat head county, a station on the main line of the Great Northern a few miles west of the main range. From that point an exploration of the McDonald lake country as far north as the Canadian line will be made. Idaho, Washington and California will in succession be visited. Prof. Clifford Pinchott another member of the commission, an eminent authority on forest matters, who has long been in the employ of the government, preceded the others and has been in Montana several weeks. He is supposed to be studying and investigating in the western part of the Blackfoot reservation.


Helena, Mont

Date Original

1896 Jul 15


Original letter dimensions: 24 x 15 cm.

Resource Identifier


File Identifier

Reel 09, Image 0318

Collection Identifier

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

Copyright Statement

The unpublished works of John Muir are copyrighted by the Muir-Hanna Trust. To purchase copies of images and/or obtain permission to publish or exhibit them, see

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.

Copyright Holder

Muir-Hanna Trust

Copyright Date



3 pages


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



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