Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Happy Birthday, John Muir

John Muir (1838-1914) was America's most famous and influential naturalist and conservationist. He has been called "The Father of our National Parks," "Wilderness Prophet," and "Citizen of the Universe." His writings and philosophy strongly influenced the formation of the modern environmental movement.

His writing tells about his adventures in nature, especially in the Sierra Nevada mountain range of California. Those include his Nature Writings, The Story of My Boyhood and Youth, My First Summer in the Sierra, The Mountains of California which are all in print - some are also available free online.

His direct activism helped to save the Yosemite Valley, Sequoia National Park and other wilderness areas. The Sierra Club, which he founded, is now one of the most important conservation organizations in the United States.

President Theodore Roosevelt met John Muir in Yosemite 100 years ago and helped inspire Roosevelt's innovative conservation programs, including establishing the first National Monuments by Presidential Proclamation, and Yosemite National Park by congressional action.

John Muir's life reminds us of the important things that just one person can do:

Wikipedia provides many links to his writings online and to information about his legacy.

On the Sierra Club website, you can find more information about Muir's life and legacy, including the site on the Life and Contributions of John Muir and a John Muir - Father of Our National Parks brochure

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