John Muir


In 1892 the Sierra Club was formed.  In 1908 an area of coastal redwood trees north of San Francisco was established as Muir Woods National Monument.  In the Sierra Nevada mountains, a walking trail from Yosemite Valley to Mount Whitney was dedicated in 1938.  It is called John Muir Trail.

John Muir was born in 1838 in Scotland.  His family name means “moor,” which is a meadow full of flowers and animals.  John loved nature from the time he was small.  He also liked to climb rocky cliffs and walls.

When John was eleven, his family moved to the United States and settled in Wisconsin. John was good with tools and soon became an inventor.  He first invented a model of a sawmill.  Later he invented an alarm clock that would cause the sleeping person to be tipped out of bed when the timer sounded.

Muir left home at an early age.  He took a thousand-mile walk south to the Gulf of Mexico in 1867and 1868.  Then he sailed for San Francisco.  The city was too noisy and crowded for Muir, so he headed inland for the Sierra Nevadas.

When Muir discovered the Yosemite Valley in the Sierra Nevadas, it was as if he had come home.  He loved the mountains, the wildlife, and the trees.  He climbed the mountains and even climbed trees during thunderstorms in order to get closer to the wind. He put forth the theory in the late 1860’s that the Yosemite Valley had been formed through the action of glaciers.  People ridiculed him.  Not until 1930 was Muir’s theory proven correct.

Muir began to write articles about the Yosemite Valley to tell readers about its beauty. His writing also warned people that Yosemite was in danger from timber mining and sheep ranching interests.  In 1901 Theodore Roosevelt became president of the United States.  He was interested in conservation.  Muir took the president through Yosemite, and Roosevelt helped get legislation passed to create Yosemite National Park in 1906.
Although Muir won many conservation battles, he lost a major one.  He fought to save the Hetch Valley, which people wanted to dam in order to provide water for San Francisco.  In the late 1913 a bill was signed to dam the valley.  Muir died in 1914.  Some people say losing the fight to protect the valley killed Muir.

What happened first?



The Muir family moved to the United States.

Muir Woods was created.

John Muir learned to climb rocky cliffs.

John Muir walked to the Gulf of Mexico

Muir visited along the east coast.

When did Muir invent a unique form of alarm clock?



while the family still lived in Scotland

after he sailed to San Francisco

after he traveled in Yosemite

while the Muir family lived in Wisconsin

after he took the long walk

What did John Muir do soon after he arrived in San Francisco?



He ran outside during an earthquake.

He put forth a theory about how Yosemite was formed.

He headed inland for the Sierra Nevadas.

He began to write articles about the Sierra Nevadas.

He wrote short stories for the local newspaper.

When did John Muir meet Theodore Roosevelt?



between 1901 and 1906

between 1838 and 1868

between 1906 and 1914

between 1868 and 1901

between 1906-1907

What happened last?



John Muir died.

John Muir Trail was dedicated.

Muir’s glacial theory was proven.

The Sierra Club was formed.

John’s family visited him.