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Happy Birthday to John Muir

Posted on: April 21st, 2011 by Luke Bauer

Today, in 1838, Scottish-American Conservationist—and Past AAC President—John Muir was born. As Muir’s biographer Steven J. Holmes puts it, Muir was “one of the patron saints of twentieth-century American environmental activity.” Muir was integral in the preservation of one of our most storied and iconic National Parks, Yosemite. He founded the Sierra Club, was a prolific author, and passionate defender of wilderness, particularly California’s Sierra Nevadas. Today, the Club’s dedicated Library staff poured through our archives to find something to commemorate his birthday. As it turns out, the AAC Library has several pieces of correspondence from the early 20th Century. Enjoy reading through the letters below, and remember that this is also National Parks Week—admission fees are waived.

(click to expand the image—the full letter is attached below as a .PDF)

Muir’s Letter to AAC Secretary, Howard Palmer (partially pictured above) [.PDF]:MuirletterDec121912001

Muir’s Letter to Harrington Putnam (Grandfather to Honorary Member William Putnam, keynote speaker at our upcoming June Board Meeting in Flagstaff, AZ) [.PDF]: MuirPutnamLetter1912001

A letter from the U.S. Secretary of the Interior to Harrington Putnam  inviting the American Alpine Club to participate in a conference for “the betterment of the National Parks” [.PDF]: SecInteriorPutnamltr1912001

A letter confirming the details of a conference for “the betterment of the National Parks.” [.PDF]: 2ndNatlParksConf1912001

About the AAC Library

The Henry S. Hall, Jr. American Alpine Club Library has a circulating collection of 20,000+ climbing books, guidebooks, and videos. As an AAC benefit, the Club will ship members up to 10 books/guidebooks/videos at a time for free. Search for and check out books at (Email the library for access to our new and improved online catalog.)

To enjoy this benefit, unite with your fellow climbers by joining the AAC. Established in 1916, the library is one of the oldest alpine research facilities in the United States, and the largest outside of Europe.

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