tv Conservationist John Muir CSPAN December 27, 2014 10:30am-11:49am EST
>> coming up next, sierra club volunteer harold wood discusses the legacy of con survey shifts that conservationists and national list john your -- john muir. this was hosted by the california historical society, as a part of the commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the wilderness act. >> we want to hear harold would tonight. he will give us an incredible journey through john muir's life. that legacy is stronger than ever. i'm looking forward to hearing you talk. i promise to be relatively brief here and just say a few words of welcome. and thank you all for coming. i want to say that i really am a huge fan of the two organizations that had us here
tonight. the california historical society, what a great place for great work that is preserving our cultural and historic heritage here in california. and the partner, the sierra club. for all of the great work it has been doing since 1892 to protect our natural landscapes here and throughout the nation. what a legacy. a couple of quick questions, how many of you have been to yosemite before? that is good. how about sequoia? kings canyon? let's not leave those guys out. sequoia is our second national park. without his work we wouldn't have those places to celebrate and enjoy. i just want to say a few personal words.
this is a big year of celebration. 50 years of the wilderness act and the leg he is incredible. my family on my mom's side, they were a little lazier then john was. [applause] they waited until a transcontinental railroad was completed then bought a ticket and came out come of getting in as early as the 1870's. he came in a bit earlier than that. they lived, most of their time, in costa county. i fantasized they saw john frequently in route to yosemite and they went up to yosemite themselves in the late 19th century.
it was only a few moments ago in the grand historic reach of time that he was keyer and making a huge difference in our lives then and now. it is appropriate we are gathered here tonight, just shy of the centennial of his passing, which was christmas eve of 1914. we have so much to talk about tonight and think about what john your -- john muir has given us since. my moment that gave me the gift and -- gift of an incredible childhood. my mom would be 105 years old
tonight. i am dedicating whatever i have to say to my mom. my earliest memories are of being in the mountains on the ease side and west side and westside and up-and-down and all around. i canter member when i could not have a passion for the outdoors and for nature. -- can't remember when i could not have passion for the outdoors and for nature. fresno was pretty darn cool. to the east of us, a couple of hours was sequoia and teens canyon. to the north of us was yosemite. i truly believed that was my own personal national park. i had to open up to the fact that in the 50's i trampled more medals than i care to remember, just being there. i felt i got to to grow up in the light of john muir.
i/o him personally a great debt of gratitude for all of the inspiration -- i oh him personally a great debt of gratitude for all his inspiration. as i was growing up i went on to live and work all over the country. for the last 45 years i have worked at the intersection of the media, mostly tv. following him john muir -- following in john yours footsteps. he must have been one of the greatest athletes of the 19th century. his ability to saunter and climb glaciers and get into the backcountry of southeast alaska and all of these places he went all over the world, twitterverse interpret them and care about them and help protect them. i lived in alaska for a long time and was still deeply involved.
john muir went into alaska in the late 1870's, 1880's, 1890's, the first anglo european to sort of get into the glaciers. many of you read his stories of adventure and discovery in that landscape all those years ago. 1899 he was on board the harem expedition. how many of you saw butch cassidy and the sundance kid? the trains they kept robbing -- he was a railroad person. the writings of meurer and the
advocacy of muir played an instrumental role to begin the protection of the national forest. it became the largest forest inside the united states, still at risk and still battles being for -- battles being fought. we have our own personal specific memories. it is extraordinary to think about where he traveled, what he did, and the sierra club. and those that followed him in spirit to build on those early years. harold is going to cover so much
of this, so i don't want to step on this. i do want to mention a couple of things. i do have a few notes i wanted to remind myself to say to you. when i look at the bay area -- i traveled and lived in alaska. 31 years ago this month my wife and i had our first baby child. we decided it was time to come back to california. for me it was this gift of coming back and rediscover a place i dealt i knew really well that i felt i knew very well. -- rediscover a place i felt i knew really well with fresh eyes. it tied with my values and my interests to john muir and the sierra club. was great to come back and see all of this and recognize in the year subsequent to his death -- people i had to meet -- people i got to meet like ansell adams
and many others. they worked so hard, creating the wilderness act, pushing it forward. becky evans played a special role in protecting the bay from utter destruction. the largest collection of protected public lands and open spaces, any major urban region on earth, 1.2 million acres. maybe 1.3, i lose track. it is growing. that is an extraordinary legacy. it goes back to all of the decades of work and labor that so many people provided. we have all of these things we get to benefit from. the national park service idea deeply rooted right here in california. john muir, at the center of that
whole concept. we have william kent. in 1908 the national monument -- which is now part of the golden gate recreation area, one of the first national parks created right where people live. now you can trace that dna back. the university of california deeply connected to the establishment of the national park service is. all of these connections, these ideas that took root here and grew, it is an amazing legacy that we get to benefit from
right here. and then especially the wilderness that we are focusing on here today. john muir, the great passionate voice and advocate for wilderness, far ahead of his time. here er in 1964, the work of the sierra club and others. and california, right at the front of support of that. they have been at the center of innovation. a very long time. vicki, back here so far. let's see here. california has more wilderness areas than any other state in
the nation. we have 149 of the 758 national wilderness areas right here in california. alaska, my old stomping grounds, has more acreage. it is a little larger. by the way, we have to thank the sierra club and some others for making that possible, when they worked throughout the 1970's. late december, 1980, weeks before ronald reagan took on the job, they were able to get passed and signed by jimmy carter the national alaska conservation act, the largest conservation act in human industry, protecting 104 million acres, the site -- the size of the state of california. doubling our wildlife refuge system. an amazing thing. it roots back to the sierra club, roots back to john muir. we have 15% of our land mass in
california as wilderness. we are only 1% behind alaska. that is not bad. california is very close. california is also one of the only states that has its own state designated wilderness areas that grew out of the federal designations of 1964. we have taken this idea, 50 years old, and put it to ground here in california. we have 12 wilderness areas officially designated as a california state park. and then in the region here, the regional park district, largest regional park district in the world, 100 14,000 acres, it has three designated wilderness areas. right near where john muir's historic home is. not just land but water, the wilderness area is now celebrating its aquatic -- its 40th anniversary this year. we have all that and a whole up
more as a result of john muir and his gifts to us in california. enough from me. i could go on for a long time but i am really looking forward to hearing harold wood. he has a great thing to tell us about. a great story to take us and tell us about john muir. he lives right here near fresno. he had that great outdoor backyard i used to have. he is chair of the meurer -- of the john muir education team. he also chairs the educational programs in you 70 -- in yosemite. he is also curator of the john muir exhibit and master of its website on the sierra club. he answers questions.
harold basically answers questions from young people of all ages constantly about john beer -- john muir. he is a walking encyclopedia of his life and legacy. he doesn't just chronicle john he is an environmental activist himself -- john muir, he is an environmental activist himself. he was very involved in helping to promote and create, through his efforts, wilderness areas in the state of washington, including clearwater. it turns out, parenthetically, washington is third behind alaska and california for division of land mass and wilderness areas it is 10% in washington. harold, thanks for your efforts in helping you get to that number. -- helping get to that number. harold is going to take us on an incredible journey tonight here inside yosemite, down a virtual
john muir trail. harold, it's all yours. [applause] >> good evening, everyone. as i have worked since 1994, maintaining the sierra club's website, i'm constantly reminded how john muir is as relevant today as he was 100 years ago. every day i am notified by google news of an article mentioning john beer. every week i received a steady stream of e-mails with questions and requests about john muir. 100 years after his death, john muir is still well known for his ability to inspire many people from all over the world, all nationalities, to experience and care about the natural world.
imagine my surprise when someone sent me an article today from "the los angeles times," questioning the relevance of john muir today. the author said we do not need wilderness because hispanics don't go to yosemite. not my experience. a set john muir only expires -- only inspires wilderness areas. as we heard he inspired many local urban parks as well. they created a strawman vision of john muir that is historically inaccurate and failed to completely -- to complete and accurate per trail of his inspiration around the world today. -- accurate portrayal of his inspiration around the world today. i think we will respond adequately to the misinformation of that article. in any case, the last few years
provides many examples of the continuing inspiration of john muir. the categories i would like to cover include international inspiration, land protection, education, and the arts. 2014 is the anniversary of many events related to wilderness, national parks, and force protection. to me -- and forest protection. to me, a key event, it is 100 years after john muir died after losing a battle to save hetch hetchy. we can celebrate the 50th anniversary of the wilderness act today only because the legacy of john muir and his followers. in many ways celebrating that wilderness -- the wilderness act is not about ager. it is more fundamentally about people. even though john muir lived before organized efforts for legislative wilderness
preservation systems, his own efficacy for wildlands laid the groundwork for public support for future wilderness legislation. today we find that john muir is becoming more and more a global inspiration as his life is celebrated increasingly throughout the u.s., his birthplace in scotland, and elsewhere. of course, this is nothing new for the california historic society. the society came up with 50 nominees considered as the top 10 greatest californians. a committee of 17 historians selected these nominees. a poll was conducted of society members, and john muir was chosen as the overall number one greatest californian. not to be outdone, the scots decided to be -- the sided to have a pulled about the greatest scott. they did -- decided to have a poll about the greatest scot.
they included many patriots of scotland. well, john muir did not win this exercise, but title went to his favorite poet. so he really won. robert burns. john muir would have approved. he treasured burns all of his life. in writing about robert burns, john muir could wax elegantly when he was describing trees or glaciers. he wrote, "his lessons of divine love and sympathy to humanity, which he preached in his poems and sent forth white-hot from his heart, has gone ringing and singing around the globe, stirring the hearts of every nation and race -- and race." so no wonder the appreciation
for john muir in the land of his birth is increasing. this is part of scotland's homecoming celebration. the country celebrated a year-long john muir festival, with a series of special events, programs, and enterprises, all focused on bringing john muir home to his birthplace in scotland. one of their major efforts was to establish a walking and cycling route in scotland named in john muir's honor. they were going to chop -- going to call it the john muir trail, but realized that could be confused with the wilderness route in sierra, california.
instead it goes across the middle of scotland, including many of the urban areas. the john muir way stretches 134 miles across scotland's heartland, running from the west to his birthplace in dunbar on the east coast. the walking and hiking trail is only one of the many efforts in scotland this year to bring home his legacy. numerous publications sought to remind people that john muir so often taught of -- that john muir, so often thought of as american and californian, was born and raised in scotland. there was even a national conference in scotland about parks and protected areas that was named the john muir conference. i am told all of the keynote speakers quoted john muir favorably in some way or
another. it has taken some years of efforts in scotland to remind the scottish that john muir was born in a small seacoast fishing village of dunbar. after two decades, that reminder has become effective. the john muir birth placed -- birthplace trust, a citizens group, have worked hard to remind people of scotland and many visitors from the united states about john muir as a scottish environmental hero. indeed john muir's first climbing experiences run the dunbar castle ruins. was born in the small white building on the left. later he moved to the larger house on the right. the smaller building was renovated in 2003 to a museum dedicated to john muir's life and work. it has thousands of visitors every year. in 2012 they counted 100,000 visitors is the museum open. it includes many great exhibits on three stories, designed to inform visitors and young people about the importance of john
muir, and through him the importance of protecting the natural environment of all sizes, large and small. the john muir replace hosts numerous programs with school groups in the community. -- john muir birthplace hosts and was programs with school groups in the community. when the new scottish parliament building, edinburgh, was dedicated in 2004, the spirit of john euro -- of john muir was included. before quotations from preeminent writers and authors
of scotland were inscribed. there is an inscription from john muir, reading, "the battle for conservation will go on endlessly. it is part of the universal battle between right and wrong." the closest equivalent to that attributed in the united states is the extra mile volunteer pathway in washington dc. this is a new national monument dedicated to the spirit of volunteering in america. john muir was given a plaque on the volunteer pathway in 2009 by the points of light organization. the extensive inscription is sort of like a hollywood walk of fame. the inscription called john muir -- and the worldwide influence of the sierra club. he raised awareness about the fragility of the wilderness and made us mindful that in preserving it we say something greater than ourselves -- we save something greater than ourselves."
the trust was established as a membership organization in 1983 to conserve wild land and while places in the united kingdom. although inspired by the americas sierra club, the strategy the john muir trust has to work through less legislation. the john muir trust actually purchases wild landscapes and now owns some of the finest wild land in the highlands, mountains, and islands of scotland. the john muir award is a large part of the trust environmental education program. the john muir award is awarded retrospectively at an annual dinner. it is more like a college academic certificate or scout merit badge that both young people and adults can
deliberately earned by completing a series of identified tasks. the goal is to encourage people to connect with, enjoy, and care for while places, large and small. his legacy has been around scotland quite a number of years before the homecoming celebration this year. environmental education efforts especially have focused on john muir. booklets and curriculum seek to remind children in scotland that he is one of their own, that they would do well to follow in his footsteps. there was even a graphic novel of john muir's life published this year. free copies were sent to every secondary school in scotland, and teacher resources are available on the web, as well as free pdf downloads of this novel.
walter a graphic novel, the book rather closely follows john muir's life pretty accurately, while simplifying and paraphrasing for a young audience. john muir at age 11 emigrated to wisconsin with his family in 1849. he was soon put to work rooting out the forest to plant crops. he fell in love with the lake near their house, where he learned to swim by watching the frogs. he admired the flowers in the meadow by the lake. when he left the farm to attend the university of wisconsin, he asked his family put a fence around the flowery meadow to keep the wildness intact. this is one of the earliest efforts of wild life preservation in the united states. the good folks in wisconsin today formed a group called "wisconsin friends of john muir," who seek to separate his life and legacy equally in wisconsin. local efforts established john muir county park next to his boyhood home site. since that time in the 70's and 80's additional land was acquired around his belovedhis
site. 1970 that time, in the back in 1980's, additional land all around his farm and protected under state management. in additional protective parcel was acquired national heritage land trust. it will eventually be owned by the u.s. wildlife service. 38 acres of land john nally settled by muir's father, daniel, adjacent to the existing wildlife refuge. sierra club vice president spencer black gave a keynote speech at an october 15 event this year in madison, wisconsin. recognized that the
muir failed to preserve the lifetime, s successful conservation efforts over the years have finally protected much of the landscape that inspired john muir to protect our wild places. sierra club's e called the hapter is john muir chapter. re in northern california, we have the home that john your lived in most of his adult life. this year is not only the 50th wilderness of the act, but also of the establishment of the john muir national historic site in martinez. this is a home that muir lived in for many years, with his wife, lily, and two daughters. i wonder how many of you have visited this national historic site. can i see a show of hands? okay, that is a third, maybe.
i'm always amazed at how many people have gone to this historic site. right across the bay. please go there, and encourage hbors.riends and neig of the unsung ne delights of the national park in the bay ht here area. muir called the study on the is scribble den. this is where he wrote many of his books and articles calling tion of the erva wilderness. if the wilderness movement has ne y ground, this is surely o of its primary temples. the john your association works service national park in celebrate muir's legacy the bay area. events s numerous public and educational programs, including a mountain and a summer camp where children firsthand about john muir and the importance of protecting wild places.
unlike muir's birthplace in is no visitor e center or museum with more than of displays and exhibits to provide detailed information about muir's life. historic home with period furnishings. near the john muir national historic site, the memory is often called upon for open-space land preservation. in fact, one local land trust land trust he mirror -- muir land trust. housing summer, a development was proposed for 44 acres adjacent to the national historic site. group d, a conservation bought the land and is planning to add it to the national historic site. should not forget that it is wild landscapes any protecting, but also bits and pieces of wildness in our cities and urban areas.
of course, tributes focus on an important place. the famous muir words named donor of the the became a national landmark, is the best-known redwood park in the world. i went too far. even ove of muir is found in southern california. is a mural that has been there since the 1970's. a noisy campaign ensued saying, save the mural. it is not just a piece of tribute ut an important to john muir as an environmental hero. a statewide and
national importance. the legislature added john to the birthday to memorative day for all celebrate to recognize his contributions. i have to say t as a me embarrassmen california, despite this law, program about john muir has not been into the curriculum here in california as much as has been in scotland. however, john muir is a popular topic for students reading special reports and presentations. especially for the annual national history day contest. students are required, under program, to not merely sources, d secondary but to identify and cite
primary historical and contemporary sources. students quite quickly see the links between muir's efforts and wilderness areas. of course, the granddaddy of is nd landscape preservation yosemite national park, celebrating its 150th anniversary this year. we all know muir's role in yosemite, which helps lead to the establishment arks e first national p outside of yellowstone. of that celebration, efforts for environmental protection and education are slated for the next several years. petrified forest in arizona was one of the first national ts proclaimed by president roosevelt in 1906. antiquities r the act authorize presidents to proclaim such national
monuments. since then, many presidents have added units to the national park system through monument designation. national tly, as monuments under jurisdiction, as well. en here studying a petrified log. the petrified forest is now a national park. enlarged and established by congress in 1962. and contains a 50,000 acre established in 1970. petrified forest national park, and craters of ional monument were the first units to receive ion within the at boundaries. the movement to establish national monuments has continued. clinton t bill
proclaimed a giant sequoia national monument, near where i live. oted so, the president qu directly from john muir, saying will ese domestic cheese continue to preach god's words fresh from heaven. i know from personally participating in this campaign how much this accomplishment was as a result of citizen efforts. recent national monument was just proclaimed last month by president obama here in california. north of los angeles. san gabriel mountains is the series of t in a national monuments proclaims by almost every national president since theodore roosevelt. similarly, pinnacles national park is our most recent national park. note the john muir quote here -- everyone needs beauty, as well as bread. places to play in, as well as pray in.
where nature may heal and give us strength to body and soul alike. from john ng legacy muir's life reminds us of the important things that one person can do. the founder of patagonia said -- if you think about all the our society has made, it m independents to now, was not government, it was activism. think, oh, teddy roosevelt established yosemite national park. bs. it was john muir who invited and then out, convinced him to ditch his security and go camping. activist, a and single person. so we see the idea of wilderness as important roots in the legacy of john muir. fulfilled by citizen activists working many decades since his
death. those who cessors are actually created our national wilderness preservation system. all of those leaders, you know, david brower, did an interview about how he was introduced to wilderness. reading of o the john muir. muir told me about the wilderness. muir, of course, was one of the founders of the sierra club. and launched a movement that lasted well beyond his lifetime. his successes would go on to found the national park the california state parks, conservation groups renting from save the redwoods to the wilderness society to local land trust and local land districts. wilderness the society, is well-known of the 1964 wilderness act. a described himself as follower of muir.
and wrote, it is of course, john muir's leadership, to which we are more directly d in our preservation efforts. accordingly, it was a foregone a major on that wilderness area names for john the would be included in 1964 wilderness act -- i'm sorry, i went forward. of what muir called the range of light is wilderness. filmmaker, ken burns, called our national parks america's best idea. but that ideas appear to me is the essence of wilderness. yet it is wilderness preservation that sometimes is among the most controversial of issues. not all wilderness has been preserved and protected. some will need her story. the river flows through
yosemite valley -- this view is what it looked like in john muir's time. the last years of his life were spent in a losing battle to try and preserve this valley. in this image, the top photo was taken in 1911. and the bottom in 1999. one thing that the loss of was h hetchy did, which good, was inspired a movement to prevent the same thing from happening in other national parks. dams proposed for dinosaur even the monument, and the 1950's and 1960's, were defeated in reference to hetch hetchy. muir's spirit lives on. group restore hetch hetchy has been working over a decade to restore the valley. they promise to keep working as long as it takes to prove that john muir was right.
and john muir still lives on in his books. every single one of his books print, with new reprints including new forwards in the last several years. over the first published 100 years ago. 100th anniversary illustrated edition of muir's summer in the sears, was the 2011 national outdoors book winner. this book reprints muir's original text in a handsome with stunning ook photos by scott miller of the places muir described in his ironmental classic. furthermore, muir's legacy is regularly celebrated in books being published today. these range from scholarly films, two biographies, to
geographical analysis. and wonderfully illustrated children's books. i went online the other day and saw that there are several more coming out next year in 2015. usual. to john muir are common today, and more soon to be added regularly. many know the john muir trail, which crosses the high country, in the sierra nevada's. completed in 1938, the project has taken 46 years to complete. william colby, the first secretary of the sierra club, called the finished trail the memorial to iate john muir. who spent many of the best years of his life exploring the region. 1964, on the left, and in office released
postage stamps honoring john muir. outpouring ated an of first-day coverage. 2005, the u.s. mint began distributing millions of the e quarters -- california state quarter -- featuring john muir. john muir is also celebrated in song and music today. songs d more than a dozen about john muir, many recorded in the last few years. there has even been a broadway style musical about muir's in the bay rmed live area with a run of several years. there is also an increasing number of orchestral arrangement inspired by muir. three coral pieces -- choral pieces. the most recent is in active i a string formed quartet -- by a string quartet.
oops. of the john muir's name is even used commercially, such as near where i live. many other buildings are named after muir, as well. of course, , and scotland, there is an education school near where i live. there are many schools throughout the united states named after john muir, ranging from elementary schools -- like in san francisco -- and the john muir college at uc san diego. there are even numerous scientific names honoring john muir. these included not only some of that he collected to the harvard t herbarium, but animals and even kinds of minerals. these names were given even in the last few years. ve most recent was a ca
miller named in 2000 -- millipede named in 2007. john muir is even featured on milk cartons. in the bay area, they joined to thank john muir for the national parks and wilderness areas. now, he is often called a wilderness profit. the patron saint of the american wilderness. to uess you guys don't want take that literally. terms are these typically metaphorical, not religious; however, it actually that at least one major religious denomination has given him a sainthood. beenadded to the list by the episcopal church of america. at saint gregory's episcopal in san francisco, muir
is celebrated among 100 other dancing saints that surround rotunda inside the church. it is a tribute to john muir's he is also claimed by buddhists and pagans and religious other persuasions, as well. in 2006, yes, the international union announced the naming of a newly discovered planet in the name of john muir. this is only a tiny, 1 mile diameter celestial body. the object was discovered in 2004. it seems to discover wanted a better name. i think this development seems who opriate for someone address as earth: planet, address: universe. two new ipad apps just came out
this month. the new ipad -- this one features not only high-resolution scans of two of homes, but extensive information of john muir's wife and inspiration. another new ipad app is called -- explore john muir's yosemite. this is a wonderful multimedia with music, photographs, video, and text selections from john muir. you, today, can even become a john muir on facebook, and join a steady stream of his quotes each day. for john muir e fans often has books discussing issues relevant to muir and his legacy. but, we are talking about places and education. think one of muir's greatest legacy is not even wilderness preservation or national parks,
remember ng societies the essential characteristic of defiance of ecology. the interrelatedness of all living things. he sustained please summarize ecology by of artfully saying -- when we out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe. have died in his spirit lives on in so many ways. of haps the best-known way connecting john muir with the through the continuing activity of the sierra club. club efforts today beyond wilderness preservation alone, given the massive threat we face with climate change. is not forgotten -- has not forgotten muir. to y have a society donors, and the
highest award given annually is called the john muir award. the chapter this year is events king some special to recognize muir -- because he died in los angeles 100 years ago. is also a growing recognition that wilderness preservation is actually an important part of responding to climate change. ceo wilson, annette subject. years of memory is preserved by john beer education team, which works on a john muir exhibit website and other efforts to remind people of the inspiration that john muir can provide for efforts to protect wilderness and our national heritage. for much more about john muir and his inspirational legacy, please see our website hosted by the sierra club. ank you. [applause]
you very, boy, thank very much. i want to say, in my introduction, i failed to see many things. you also really lead that 1989, 25 years ago, to have john muir day every day in california. thank you so much for that, among many other things. [applause] we on't know how much time for , but we have time questions, do we? if we have a question or up ment, if you like to come to this microphone, we would really appreciate it so that c-span can get it and we can all hear it. harold and i will get out of the way here. >> harold, you don't know me, but i know you. i know you from --
>> this little button. >> okay, thank you. >> testing? okay, harold, i know you because i am the president of john muir tourism center. i have some -- i am a teacher, first. and i'm a teacher there. some of my ys, be coming re going to the film that t they promoted, or actually that they created for the yosemite youth contest. to so i have been trying round them up to see if i can get them, and so forth.
i went on and found that you are going to be here tonight. just out of sheer determination, i left school at 3:00 pm this afternoon. and i don't know if john muir would approve of it because i've made it here because i took bart. to the ed to run down muir center and bring you a gift. this gift is for you to pass on to others. at your discretion, that you think would be worthy. other artifacts in here. scott a signed copy by -- both of them. so i really appreciate you o ving this opportunity to d this. and i do want to say about the is where which jjust four in 1868, years after abraham lincoln
signed the grant -- we have of his l copies of all original books on display there. want is a.s all i thank you so much. [applause] >> thank you. was up in coulterville a couple years ago for one of their programs that they do e john y, to celebrat muir's memory. unfortunately, i just heard otel in jeffrey h coulterville, where a state, stayed, re -- where i had a fire in just the past few days. i hope they will be able to restore that. >> [inaudible] that the part -- the
part where theodore roosevelt stayed was protected and not burn down. re, as well.ay the he did not always. >> we have john muir right here, as a matter of fact. in what would be involved restoring hetch hetchy? take any billions would it to find another place for the water? >> good question. well, i'm not here to speak about hetch hetchy. i would just briefly say that hetch hetchy reservoir is one of nine reservoirs along the river. to restore hetch hetchy does not require san of its co losing any water rights. it simply talks about redistributing the location of where it would be stored. there are nine other reservoirs downstream. it would take some reengineering. i have heard a lot of people cry that the dollar amounts are really huge. so i kind of look them up. you know, it is the price of
maybe one bomber. the price of a new tunnel that the last couple years that went under the city for traffic. it's something, i believe, a little less than what the world trade center cost to build. so it is within our grasp. will st have to have the to do it, to make restoration as much of a priority as preservation. i think that will become increasingly important. to me, hetch hetchy valley is a symbol for the need for ration. they are now calling for the greatly expanded wilderness areas, saying that we are actually too timid in our proposals. we ought to allocate half of planet earth to wildlife. his strategy is to build while ecuador's that could include -- wildlife s corridor was that could improve private lands. let's not be too timid.
let's do it john muir did. [applause] >> anybody else? oh, yes. up a few years ago, i looked john muir -- i looked up his papers. and i think they are at pepperdine? >> the university of mississippi. d john le library 's wor muir's papers are. >> right. ine and see go onl all of his drawings and read his stuff. i mean, you will be there for hours. is a love of collection. thank you. >> you're welcome. some of you interested in history might actually be interested in helping out that collection. they have digitized all of john muir's journals and most of his letters. they are now working on transcribing the text, so that it can be fulltext searchable. they are asking for volunteers to come take one page and just
read it. it takes a while to learn how john years handwriting -- but kind of exciting to decipher his actual words on the paper that he wrote. then you can submit that to them on an online system and help out their efforts. so they are doing a lot of connecting in students, as well, to john mayer. they have a required freshman class with a learn about john muir. they learn about the importance of conservation. so educational efforts, have really fforts messed together there. >> other questions? do not hesitate. if you do want to do it, why don't you get up in line here or so. >> i read a collection of some of his stories, some of his adventures. he had some amazing adventures. do you have any favorites of yours?
i know there was one where they ran out of water, they almost died. there is a whole bunch of crazy want. a favor to two. >> well, he has a great book of the collections of music ventures. i think it is for sale here. in stetson's criteria was that almost had to die in the included for it to be in the book. and, you know, there are over a dozen stories. favorites is how he avalanche in yosemite valley. going, and he ed realized that if he started tumbling he would die. but he spread himself out, spread eagle, and glided down. there is one of the first extreme sport ever seen, you know? -- other adventures
climbing mount ritter and feeling like you is going to fall because he couldn't move anyplace, up or down. it's okay, you know, he didn't know what to do. then a second presence took over him and he magically started climbing again. i think that shows the importance of the subconscious mind. can learn a lot. >> yes, come on up over here. if you do have a question -- if you have a question or comment or something, just kind of get in line. >> i just want to touch a on the value of the in the 19th century --
>> william keith was a good friend of john muir. they had an interesting friendship. i understand that muir would come to keeps studio, and they argue -- keith's studio, argue over the art. the artist, william keith, his idea was a little bit more of expressing himself. yes, it is a natural landscape, but some of them are dark and brooding. some of his later work i do not like very much. his earlier work often had beautiful scenes of the sierra's, and helped inspire of the preservation efforts.
despite their arguments over of these things, muir and keith were friends -- lifelong friends. muir is a scott. i think, like a lawyer, he like to argue a little bit. he argued with his other friends, as well. noted essayist john was oughs, from new york, actually as widely read as john muir was. argued all the time because burroughs wanted to kind of stay in his little hometown and go birding around the local fields and meadows. they were constantly in a tug-of-war about how to best appreciate nature. they went on the expedition together, and they had a number of little arguments there. yet they consider themselves friends. pictures of them --
sitting together, just having too few times. muir did have some famous friends. thinking about yosemite today, and the metals being trampled, to have any how to go about protecting it from overuse or degradation? time, he in john years didn't foresee that there would be 4 million visitors a year to yosemite valley. when it was first proposed to automobiles in the valley, he was impressive enough to see that it would create a big problem. so he said, let those mechanical beals in. as long as people can go in there and enjoy the wilderness. he didn't for c some of the in blems that i have seen
the yosemite valley -- some of it is very overcrowded, noisy, loud. i think there needs to be a mode of public transit to substitute for the automobile. big problem f a because -- where are you going to park in whatever? be a ought to sophisticated way to have a monorail system through yosemite valley someday. this maybe could accommodate the visitors. i don't -- i think that is reason, actually, to for protecting hetch hetchy. make it a counterpart that would not be developed the same way as yosemite valley was developed. >> i wanted to ask about of muir's e fascinating adventures. he walked from indiana, i ld confederacy
to savannah and along the gulf coast. notes on the flora of the south, but he also about the people post-civil war era -- the death and destruction and so on and so forth. did he write at any length that, beyond his notes and diary, about that hike? k was published after his death. that was largely taken from his journals that he kept on that mile walk from indianapolis down to cedar key, florida. he wrote about both people he met and the flora and fauna. the time was right after the civil war. there were marauding bands around, still, little bit. people tried to rob him, and he was sort of say, well, here is
my botanical press kit. are you interested in at? no. so he got away with it. -- actually, that journey was supposed to be the first part of a trip to south america. he wanted to go to the amazon, like alexander von humboldt. his idea was to walk to florida and the catch is shipping go down. he actually made it as far as havana, cuba. but, apparently, because when sleeping in savannah, georgia -- he got mosquito bites and he got malaria. he arrived in cuba, that that he with realized he wasn't going to make it. so he caught a fruit boats that was going up to new york so that he could change to another boat so he could come to california. he wound up in yosemite. it was supposed to be a side
trip on his way to the amazon. and actually, it was. in 1911, just a few years before his death, he did make it to the amazon. at that point, he was a 76-year-old man. as far as boat trip manaus and the upper regions of the amazon. he took a news out to see some the special flora and plants that lived in that area. he did for the lifelong dream to get down to that area, eventually. >> can you talk a little bit john muir and -- met? >> i guess how they met -- much i think, was to a was on to that he survey the landscape of the force of the united states. and to report back mendations to roosevelt.
muir was invited to not be in official commission member of that, but to be kind of a guest. sort of, i guess, provide some balance for all the people who had degrees. you know, he didn't have a degree. but they also called him doctor muir. it was an honorific. he did receive honorary , but he did rees even graduate from college. he was a college dropout. so people like him and others muir as a iss sheepherder and didn't know anything. but i think a lot of it was not only knowledge, but attitude. really telling story when he had been showing john muir the grand canyon together. he saw a battle stake. his first instinct was to kill it. that ohn muir said, no,
rattlesnake belongs here and has as much right to live as anybody. there was an attitude difference. so, that is what happened. he really felt nature was to be exploited, to use, utilize for mankind for the greatest good, the greatest number -- his homework. criticize that too much. that was a wise idea and a way to protect forests. muir, actually, is sometimes thought of being against that. muir like ually study i have, you actually find out that he wanted wilderness areas of the managed forests. he wanted some forests. with having as okay some logging, but he wanted fire protection, he wanted wildlife protection in those areas. he just and want to stop that.
a farmer, muir was as well. as a farmer, he know that work with you have to the land on that kind of a basis. but he had the foresight to say that we also need wilderness areas that we leave alone. to me, that is the greatness of muir because we can have both. >> i have a question this time. you mentioned that you can learn a lot, psychologically, from muir, aas well. who were and lincoln, somewhat contemporaries, but in their own way -- both had similar background growing up. and have you given any thought to the background?
their relationships with their dad, for example? and how that might have education and their drive and motivation and so forth? thank you. >> well, it is often spoken of above the difficult relationship that john muir had with his father, daniel. these kind of of born-again people who would change the religious sect that s family to belong to on a monthly basis. a d, you know, each had to be little more rigorous than the last. there were times muir and his brothers and his sisters were farm doing a lot of hard work, and anyone say, you know, should just eat oatmeal. he decided he had to be a vegetarian as a good christian. know, when his father was burning the forest, he
would tell him -- if you are wicked, you're going to get thrown into the fire just like the eternal damnation of hell. muir was also, i think today, considered an abused child. because he was beaten by his father. many times because muir was quite self-willed. at least to take sundays off to go swimming in the lake. that was the only day they were allowed to do it. the time was backbreaking, dawn to dusk work. it is interesting -- muir with his two ood, daughters, he was very careful. them chools he would send to, he always wanted to make sure that they do not believe in corporal punishment. just wanted to oppose that in any form. so, it did have some influence, i think, on his makeup. luckily, he survived that
and came out pretty well. >> how are we doing on time? it is 7:30 pm. that is about a time, more or less? -- do we have time? if we can get a clue from people who are even more authoritative than we are, we can, you know, wrap this up. say a few nt to things. first of all, if this is thank you so nd -- much. you have been absolutely fantastic with this. also add to to something that harold mentioned -- really encourage everybody to go out and visit john muir national -- the
lands have been protected. also, you mentioned the john your land trust. go out there and enjoy it. they are working in john yours on his behalf -- and on his yard behalf. you know, walk on the lands that john muir walked on. a couple of other spots i highly recommend -- and we talk about restoration. you have all been to muir beach, i suppose, right? out to muir beach -- the f redwood rshed o creek. redwood creek flows out of the sea, 7 miles long, but in iconic little stream. gate national parks service, over the past five done an ave in restoring job watershed of redwood
of damage they t experienced since the gold rush to bring it back to it's more natural landscape. hills have been reconfigured, a new half of the river has been established, 30,000+ native plant have implanted. it is a transformation of an as logical universe, as well a visitor experience. experience this restoration. the goal was initially, of preserve o try and habitat for coho and steelhead. go see this restoration, something that john muir would e.v and, of course, there you are at muir beach. the last thing i would add, in wandering around the out hborhood and finding to hang hn muir used out occasionally, go to the the pacific heights a lovely, s go see ting place -- and
where -- where he wasn't worshiping nature outdoors, he would go to the church here in the city. all of this -- a great place to go. and john muir still lives. he lives in so many ways. as harold has described. and the landscapes we love, and the ideas. be efully, we are going to advancing and growing and making more relevant in the future than they even are today. any other questions? if not, thank you so much for coming. enjoy this wonderful place. and see you soon. [applause] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2014] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] join "american history tv" tonight for lectures in history.
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