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    February 2023
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    Scots Abroad: John Muir, pioneer of the preservation movement

    More about John Muir and his native town: Dunbar, Scotland.

    USA 1964 John Muir Postage Stamps

    John Muir and Redwood Forest. Designed by Rudolph Wendelin. This 5 cent postage stamp was issued on April 29, 1964. Scott Number: 1245.

    john-muir-the-story-of-my-boyhood-and-youthEven though the A1 bypasses Dunbar, I’m so happy we took time to turn off to this quaint little town, on the East Coast of Scotland which is less than 30 minutes drive east of Edinburgh. For those not wishing to drive, Dunbar has a mainline station, and it is only a short, but picturesque train journey from Edinburgh Waverley Station.

    It was fun to stroll along High Street, full of interesting little shops along with a variety of cafes and restaurants to stop for a welcome break. As you mentioned in your last post Mairiuna, A journey around Scotland: from Tantallon Castle to Dunbar there is also the pretty natural harbour protected by a large defensible outcrop of rock and where we can see the ruins of the Dunbar castle.

    John Muir wrote about his first eleven years in Scotland in the book titled: The Story of my boyhood and YouthI also found an audio version of the book !

    As we passed in front of the museum on High Street, where one can learn more about John Muir’s life and work, I recalled seeing beautiful postage stamps issued by the United States Postal Service (USPS) to commemorate his tremendous conservation work.  Aren’t they gorgeous? Truly beautiful art in miniature!

    USA 1998 Postage Stamps John Muir

    Reverse side of stamp reads: “Often referred to as a father of national parks, John Muir was a naturalist who championed the wilderness and its preservation.”

    “This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never all dried at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal sunset, eternal dawn and gloaming, on seas and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.” John Muir

    Who deserves credit for preserving Yosemite, Sequoia, Mount Rainier, Petrified Forest, and the Grand Canyon National Parks?

    If you answered Theodore Roosevelt, you’re in the majority. You’re only half right. John Muir convinced Roosevelt to camp with him near Glacier Point for three days in May, 1903. During that trip, Muir told Roosevelt to establish Mariposa Grove and Yosemite Valley as a protected area. Three years later, Roosevelt signed a bill that gave the federal government ownership of the national parks, just as Muir had suggested.



    The Eight Wilderness-Discovery Books-John Muir- Ed The Mountainers,2010


    These reviews are from :

    5.0 out of 5 stars – John Muir is his idol.
    My Husband loves all things that have anything to do with John Muir.This was perfect cause it has 8 books in one.
    By Denise S. Boudreaux (South Carolina)

    5.0 out of 5 stars – If you love nature, this is for you
    Friends and I have read Muir’s works aloud around many wilderness campfires. His writing is lyrical, highly descriptive and reflective of his intense attention to the world around.
    This book includes most of his best. “Stickeen”, about a brave little dog that followed him on a glacier walk, is alone worth the cost of the book. I sent it to a library as a memorial for a friend.
    By Miss Kay

    5.0 out of 5 stars – John Muir is my Hero
    I absolutely love the way John Muir writes. His descriptions of nature and his adventures are captivating and beautiful. I think I may have all of his books by now….they are good to read when you need to escape from the hustle-bustle of life.
    By I Love Oregon (TALENT, OR)

    5.0 out of 5 stars – Great reading
    Wonderful glimpse into one man’s love of nature and lifelong crusade for preservation. Poetic, spiritual, compelling and insightful.
    By Ronald Paul Roy (Tn.)

    5.0 out of 5 stars –Want a detailed description of a snow-banner? the nut-pine?
    Or numerous other natural phenomena? Come browse Muir’s collection of books. Yes, browse the 1,030 pages which comprise his writings. This book is excellent for the student of nature because his descriptive writing takes you to the high Sierra, the redwood forests, the 1,000 mile trek through Florida to the Gulf of Mexico. You are there and you want to be THERE! While much of the description was written over 100 years ago, the magnificence of a Sequoia, the humidity of a Florida swamp and the curiosity of a Douglas squirrel is still REAL today. A true travelogue for nature lovers and mountainmen wannabes alike.
    By A Customer

    Let me conclude with an invitation to watch this great video by Jack Striker on the Scottish-born American naturalist, author, and early advocate of preservation of wilderness in the United States. Founder of the Sierra Club.


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