Scroll To Top

Chronology of Important Events in the Life of John Muir


1838  April 21, birthday of John Muir in Dunbar, Scotland.

1841  Began school at the age of three.

1849  Immigration to Wisconsin at the age of 11.

1860  Left home to exhibit his inventions at State Agriculture Fair in Madison, Wisconsin; brief jobs; enrolls at the University of Wisconsin.

1861–2  Attends University of Wisconsin for two and a half years, teaches school during the winter, forms a friendship with the Carr's.

1863  Left the University; foot tour of Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, and Canada.

1866  Indianapolis: worked for manufacturer of carriage parts.

1867  Eye injury.  Begins 1000 mile walk to Florida and then to Cuba.

1868  Voyage to California: landed in San Francisco, March 28, and walked across the valley; worked at ranch of Pat Delaney.

1869  Summer sheepherder in high Sierra; returned to live in Yosemite to work for Hutchings, to operate sawmill; began exploration for signs of glaciers.

1871  Met Emerson in Yosemite.

1872  Began to publish articles in leading magazines.

1873   Continuous residence in Yosemite ended.

1874  Met the Strentzels in Alhambra Valley.

1875  Lived in Bay Area writing magazine articles; trips to mountains; Utah.

1879 Proposed to Louie Strentzel; First Alaska trip with S. Hall Young; discovery of Glacier Bay, Muir Glacier.

1880  April 14: marriage of John Muir (42) and Louie (33); Second trip to Alaska, adventure with Stickeen.

1881  John Swett bought ranch adjoining Muir holdings.Birth of Wanda Muir; third trip to Alaska aboard the Corwin.

1880–82  Construction of the mansion.

1882  Beginning of extensive ranching period.

1886  Birth of Helen Muir.

1888  Trip to Mt.Rainier; editor and contributor of Picturesque California, two volumes.

1890  Alaska trip to Muir Glacier; death of Dr. Strentzel; Muir family move to mansion.

1890  Yosemite becomes a National Park.

1892  Founding of the Sierra Club, end of ranching career for John Muir.

1893  Trip to Europe with William Keith.

1894 Mountains of California published.

1899  Mt. Rainier National Park established; member of Harriman Alaska Expedition.

1901   Our National Parks published.

1903  Theodore Roosevelt visited Yosemite.

1904  World tour.

1905  Helen ill, Adamana, Arizona for recovery; death of Louie Strentzel Muir, August 6.

1906  San Francisco earthquake, repair of house, marriage of Wanda to Thomas Hanna.
Petrified Forest becomes a national monument.

1908  Grand Canyon National Park established. Muir Woods National Monument established.

1907  Continuing fight to save Hetch-Hetchy Valley.

1909Stickeen published (John’s only children story).

1910  Helen married Buel Funk.

1911My First Summer in the Sierra published.

1911-12  Trip to South America and Africa (73 years old.)

1912   The Yosemite published.

1913   The Story of My Boyhood and Youth published.

1913  Raker Act passes, approving construction of a dam in Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy Valley.

1914   Muir dies on Christmas Eve in Los Angeles.