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Places Important to John Muir

For a short list, see John Muir's World Travels.



The World



  • "The Calypso Borealis" by John Muir, excerpted from The Life and Letters of John Muir.
  • John Muir Historical Plaque, Epping Lookout, Bruce Trail, 12 miles from Meaford, Ontario.
  • Taking the train route from Madison Wisconsin via Chicago on March 1, 1864, Muir crossed the international border at Windsor, Canada West, which later became the Province of Ontario. Alighting somewhere in present southern Ontario, his purpose was to botanize and pursue his inventions. He explored the area bounded by lakes Erie, Ontario, and Huron over the following several months. He spent the spring, summer, and fall of 1864 exploring the woods and swamps, and collecting plants around the southern reaches of Lake Huron's Georgian Bay. Muir hiked along the Niagara Escarpment, including much of today's Bruce Trail. In May of 1864, he had penetrated northward as far as Simcoe County. On the 18th of that month he started on a three weeks' ramble through Simcoe and Grey Counties, walking an estimated distance of about three hundred miles. During July he was botanizing north of Toronto in the Holland River swamps, and on highlands near Hamilton and Burlington bays. In August he is again about the shores of Lake Ontario and in the vicinity of Niagara Falls, which he described as "the grandest sight in all the world." With his money running low and winter coming, he reunited with his brother Daniel near Meaford, Ontario, who persuaded him to work with him at the sawmill and rake factory of William Trout and Charles Jay. Muir lived with the Trout family in an area called Trout Hollow, south of Meaford, on the Bighead River. He did not leave Canada until March of 1866, when the rake factory burned down.
  • Was John Muir a Draft Dodger? by Harold Wood. Essay details the timeline of Muir's Canada sojourns, and specific locations, showing that Muir did not go to Canada to evade the Civil War draft.
  • Meaford, Ontario -(Offsite-Link) - Muir wrote, "When I came to the Georgian Bey of Lake Huron, whose waters are so transparent and beautiful, and the forests about its shores with their ferny, mossy dells and deposits of boulder clay, it seemed to be a most favorable place for study... In a beautiful dell, only a mile or two from the magnificent bay, I fortunately found work in a factory where there was a sawmill and lathes for turning out rakes, broom, and fork handles, etc." Muir worked at Trout's mill for a year and a half, greatly improving the efficiency of output of rake handles by making efficiency improvements. But on February 21 of 1866, the factory building and all of its contents took fire, thus ending Muir's Meaford sojourn.
  • Canadian Friends of John Muir
  • Parks Canada


New Zealand




South America

United States of America

  • General


    • Alabama
        • General
          • On November 23, 1897, John Muir visited Mobile, Alabama. He enjoyed the fine forest of Magnolia trees, tupelo, and fine live oak. Upon learning that his botanical friends were unable to prevent destruction of these as road making in straight line ruthlessly cut through glorious magnolias and Tupelos, he wrote in his journal, " This hurts my heart."

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