hetch hetchy valley john muir summary

hetch hetchy valley john muir summary

From 1901 - 1913, John Muir led the Sierra Club in a campaign to protect . John Muir (1838-1914) was the leader of the movement to save the Hetch Hetchy Valley from despoliation at the hands of the City and County of San Francisco, which wanted the valley for a municipal water supply. The Hetch Hetchy Valley, located near Yosemite, has been described as being like a slightly lower, drier and warmer Yosemite. John Muir won the crusade to get Yosemite National Park created, but lost the battle to save Hetch Hetchy Valley from being submersed by a reservoir for San Francisco. As well dam for water-tanks the people's cathedrals and churches, for no holier temple has ever been consecrated by the heart of man." New York Times 1913 Editorials Opposing Damming of Hetch Hetchy, Privacy Policy/Your California Privacy Rights, 1908 Congressional Hearing About Hetch Hetchy. In 1902, ex-Mayor James Phelan of San Francisco filed a claim with the federal government for the water from the Tuolomne River, which would be gathered by damming the mouth of the Hetch Hetchy Valley. John Muir Contests the Hetch-Hetchy Dam. See our library. Remembering the loss of Hetch ." If we could return Hetch Hetchy to a more natural state — of the variety that stirred John Muir’s soul a century ago — would we be clearing a path for the emergence of Yosemite Valley 2.0? Pleistocene glaciation had carved this spectacular canyon westward from the Sierra crest, its icy thrust waning approximately where Hetch Hetchy valley now exists. Hetch Hetchy valley is in Yosemite National Park, about 190 miles east of San Francisco in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Stir up all other park and playground clubs, women's clubs, etc...". The battle for Hetch Hetchy was perhaps the first effort at what is now known as "grassroots lobbying," getting individual citizens to contact elected officials in support of or opposition to legislation. . According to John Muir, the Hetch Hetchy Valley was once every bit as beautiful as neighboring Yosemite Valley to the southeast. Dam Hetch Hetchy! The city was San Francisco, the valley was Hetch Hetchy, and the waters were from the Tuolumne River watershed, located within Yosemite National Park. Muir … On the other side, preservationists, led by John Muir, argued that Congress should protect the Hetch Hetchy Valley from d… The women of the conservation crusade had worked hard to preserve the valley as an integral part of the park. Given the era and the prevailing pro-development values (hardly changed to this day, after all), it is not surprising that the congressional committees created to analyze the controversy opted to allow the city to build the Hetch Hetchy dam. Contributed by Gregory Hitch being built in Dinosaur National Monument and in Grand Canyon National Park. - The Hetch Hetchy Valley was "uncommon feature" not found often in nature - Submerging Hetchy Hetchy would NOT enhance its beauty by creating a crystal-clear lake - Damming Hetch Hetchy would come at a universal public loss for the private gain of a few - John Muir thought Hetch Hetchy Valley was a gift from God that shouldn't be destroyed Mini-Course: Can We Afford the Wilderness? The Hetch Hetchy Valley, California, undated painting by Albert Bierstadt (black and white). A hydroelectric powerhouse was built and enough copper wire purchased to stretch from the Sierras to San Francisco. In John Muir's eyes, the Hetch Hetchy Valley of Yosemite National Park was "one of Nature's rarest and most precious mountain temples." The arguments of the preservationists were focused on saving Hetch Hetchy Valley for public use. This is the story of water, a valley, and a city. The most outspoken opposition to San Francisco's plans came, however, from the nascent preservation movement, led in this case by the famous John Muir. Hetch-Hetchy Valley was first discovered in 1871 by John Muir. 1. The dam could provide sorely needed fresh water for the Bay Area along with an inexpensive supply of hydro-electric power. Hetch Hetchy: Can the Splendid Wild Return? . We went a bit later in the day and barely saw anyone. to Hetch Hetchy: "Let me assure you that we have only begun to fight, and we are not going to rest until we have established the principle 'that our National Parks shall be hold forever inviolate,' and until we have demonstrated to the satisfaction of every one, including yourself, that the American people stand for that principle. Please consider a year-end contribution to Restore Hetch Hetchy. Let us never forget what happened here. , animation: John Muir on Hetch Hetchy by Jim Swanson. A~thor of "The Mountains of California," " Our National Parks,'' etc. . The Progressive Era’s most controversial environmental issue was the 1908–1913 struggle over federal government approval for building the Hetch Hetchy dam in a remote corner of federally-owned land in California’s Yosemite National Park. Photo: San Francisco Public Utilities Commission. http://foundsf.org/index.php?title=The_Hetch_Hetchy_Story,_Part_I:_John_Muir,_Preservationists_vs._Conservationists&oldid=25112. John Muir rallied other groups, such as the Appalachian Mountain Club and the Saturday Walking Club in Chicago, to oppose the plan, but lacking the active participation of California conservationists, the campaign was unable to derail the project. John Muir won the crusade to get Yosemite National Park created, but lost the battle to save Hetch Hetchy Valley from being submersed by a reservoir for San Francisco. from private Phelan papers, Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley). 48 (2). From 1908-1913, Congress debated legislation to supply the city of … 1910 Map of Hetch Hetchy Valley and Surrounding Region, Giving a Dam; Congress Debates Hetch Hetchy. ', For information about this website, e-mail: Echoing contemporary struggles over the environment, President Theodore Roosevelt's early initiatives in parkland creation and wilderness preservation were under attack. Muir referred to this valley to Yosemite Valley because of its glamorous views. John Muir wrote to his friend Robert Underwood Johnson: "We held a Sierra Club meeting last Saturday--passed resolutions and fanned each other to a fierce white Hetch Hetchy heat. Larodge Johnson Living in the environment Movie summary In this assignment I am supposed to watch and summarize the movie “Discover Hetch Hetchy with Harrison Ford”. The valley, they thought, would be an ideal place for reservoir that would provide water for the city forever. animation: John Muir on Hetch Hetchy by Jim Swanson. Hetch Hetchy Valley lies about 20 miles north of Yosemite Valley. The city had originally requested permission from the federal government to build a dam within the boundaries of Yosemite … John Muir, who led the opposition, wrote beautifully about the valley, calling it “one of Nature's rarest and most precious mountain temples.” He appealed to the nation, asking what else might be at stake if we allowed the creation of a “water tank” in this national park. Our flagship blog features analysis of news from our staff and announcements of upcoming events. The Death of a Valley and its Protector. Despite opposition from many citizens, including most of the nation's leading newspapers, Congress passed the Raker Act in 1913 allowing the city of San Francisco to destroy Hetch Hetchy. This is … (op.cit. said John Muir.1, Meanwhile, Mayor Phelan considered the project essential to save the city from "monopoly and microbes." In 1912 John Muir published his collection The Yosemite, which included “Hetch Hetchy Valley,” his essay singing the glories of the “other” Yosemite Valley and an argument against the construction of a dam that would flood the basin in order to provide water for San Francisco. However, the renowned conservationist ultimately lost his struggle to save the slightly smaller Hetch Hetchy Valley from development and, in … Hetchy, in the 1950s and 1960s, the Sierra Club successfully stopped dams from The city of San Francisco, rebuilding after the devastating 1906 earthquake, believed the dam was necessary to meet … As the Merced flows in tranquil beauty through Yosemite, so does the Tuolumne through Hetch-Hetchy. At the heart of the debate was the conflict between conservationists, who held that the environment should be used in a conscientious manner to benefit society, and preservationists, who believed that nature should be protected, saved from human interference. In the opening it seems like Harrison ford is supporting a movement to drain the reservoir and restore the Hetch Hetchy Valley. The flooding of Hetch Hetchy valley is an enduring issue and there is currently a growing movement advocating for draining and restoring the iconic valley. In the early 20th century, San Francisco flooded the Hetch Hetchy Valley, destroying "one of nature's rarest and most precious mountain temples." ... Hetch Hetchy is perfect if you want a little more seclusion. Finally, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Raker Act on December 19, 1913. to the words William Colby wrote to Gifford Pinchot in 1909 with reference Hetch Hetchy valley is in Yosemite National Park, about 190 miles east of San Francisco in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. In late October 1934, the system finally brought water into the city, but its power transmission lines never reached beyond PG&E's Newark substation on the eastern side of the south bay. For years, city officials had been wanting to dam the Hetch Hetchy Valley 167 miles away in the Sierra Nevada mountains. I particularly urged that we must get everybody to write to Senators and the president keeping letters flying all next month thick as storm snow flakes, loaded with park pictures, short circulars, etc. the Hetch Hetchy Valley, a part of Yosemite National Park, from being filled All reviews evergreen lodge san francisco yosemite valley clean water john muir hiking trails valley floor tunnel drive road miles controversial groveland bear ranger hikers june restrooms. "Dam Hetch Hetchy! It was the first time the young national park system had been so violated. After the dam was completed in 1923, waters flooded the valley, destroying Muir’s environmental muse. The plan languished throughout the first decade of the century, in part due to the corrupt regime of the Union Labor Party under Boss Abe Ruef, which attempted to strike a deal with the Bay Cities Water Company in exchange for a million dollar bribe. The Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, which holds 117 billion gallons of water behind a 312-foot dam, drowned a glacial valley that early conservationist John Muir … After the Ice Age glaciers retreated, the freshly excavated gorge was utilized by the Tuolumne River… M.M. Although it was once known for its natural, beautiful valley, for the past 90 years or so, it has provided the San Francisco Bay Area with hydroelectricity and serves as its main water source. The floor of Yosemite is about 4000 feet above the sea, and that of Hetch-Hetchy about 3700, while in both the walls are of gray granite, very high, and rise precipitously out of flowery gardens and groves. 3 of 22 June 25,, 1913 article on the John Muir and the Sierra Club fighting to prevent the creation of Hetch Hetchy Reservoir on National Park land For thousands of years before the arrival of settlers from the United States in the 1850s, the valley was inhabited by Native Americans who practiced subsistence hunting-gathering. O'Shaugnessy oversaw the gradual construction of the network of dams, reservoirs, tunnels, and powerhouses to deliver water and power to SF. Although In 1925, it was abruptly announced that San Francisco had run out of money and could not complete the power lines into the city. To get to Hetch Hetchy, turn north off Highway 120 onto Evergreen Road about 1 mile (2.2 km) outside the Big Oak Flat Entrance gate, and 12.5 miles (20 km) east of the small community of Buck Meadows. John Muir, in Chapter 16 of his book The Yosemite (chapter titled "Hetch Hetchy Valley"), writes The floor of the Valley is about three and a half miles long, and from a fourth to half a mile wide. Hetch Hetchy Cañon in 1890 by Landscape Artist Albert Bierstadt. the nation in defense of its national parks. Study for "The Hetch Hetchy Valley, California" painting by Albert Bierstadt (black and white). 2. The City built a dam and reservoir, drowning this beautiful valley, even though other less-damaging sites existed. Initial opposition came from the lightly populated eastern Central Valley where there were two irrigation districts in Modesto and Turlock with their own eyes on the Tuolomne River watershed. Soon after a city of San Francisco referendum in November 1903 favored construction of the dam, John Muir had taken the Hetch Hetchy issue to the nation. "Let Everyone Help to Save the Famous Hetch Hetchy Valley and Stop the Commercial Destruction Which Threatens Our National Parks" by John Muir (San Francisco: 1909); cited in "Politics and the Park: San Francisco's Fight for Hetch Hetchy, 1908-1913" by Kendrick A. Clements in Pacific Historical Review May 1979 vol. Our blog. From the turn-off, the road winds for 16.5 miles up the old Hetch Hetchy railroad grade (… We are going to keep up the good fight without fear or favor, 'if it shall take until doomsday. From 1908-1913, Congress debated legislation to supply the city of San Francisco with water by damming the Hetch Hetchy Valley. Existing as another spectacular example of a monumental ice-sculpture, Hetch Hetchy exists just below 4000’ elevation in the northwest corner of Yosemite National Park. harold.wood@sierraclub.org. Situated inside Yosemite National Park, the Hetch Hetchy Valley was described by John Muir as “ one of nature’s rarest and most precious mountain temples.” It was one of the most spectacular landscapes on earth, and it was protected for a reason. The federal Right of Way Act of 1901 provided the legal basis for the city to acquire rights to national park land, but the then-Secretary of the Interior Ethan Allen Hitchcock refused to give SF a permit, preferring to protect Yosemite's natural wonders. Hetchy-Hetch was used shortly after as a reservoir and water system for the Bay Area. Hetch Hetchy was part of Yosemite National Park, which meant that it was federal property. The city's line ended a few hundred yards from PG&E's Newark substation on the eastern side of the south bay, conveniently close to PG&E's just-completed high-voltage delivery cable from Newark to SF. Siding with the conservationists, San Francisco citizens argued that the reservoir was necessary for the health of their city. Summary: Students will study the Hetch Hetchy debate with primary sources from the records of Congress. The name of this valley is derived from Miwok word hatchhatchie, meaning edible grass (tchistory). Since the 1880s, the city of San Francisco had been raising the possibility of constructing a dam on the Tuolumne River at Hetch Hetchy Valley. Vineet N wrote a review Jun 2019. Muir … More evidence that Hetch Hetchy is not the whole Tuolumne valley. Hetch Hetchy is located in Yosemite National Park and is part of the Tuolumne River watershed. Hetch Hetchy is the name of a valley, a reservoir and a water system in California in the United States. In 1923, San Francisco revoked Spring Valley Water Company's franchise and began rebuilding the water mains and plumbing for the citizens of San Francisco. Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0. As well dam for water-tanks the people's cathedrals and churches, for no holier temple has ever been consecrated by the heart of man . As long as the busy public in general knew little or nothing about the Hetch-Hetchy Valley, the few cunning drivers of the damming scheme, working in darkness like moles in a low-lying meadow, seemed confident of success; but when light was turned on and the truth became manifest that next to Yosemite, Hetch-Hetchy is the most wonderful and most important feature of the great park, that damming it … They will analyze petitions, resolutions, and telegrams sent to the United States Senate. Hetch Hetchy proponents were quick to use the conflagration as proof of the necessity of new water supplies for San Francisco. In January 1910, the City held a bond referendum in which voters approved a $45 million bond to build the first phase of Hetch Hetchy, but rejected a $35 million bond to buy out the Spring Valley Water Company's facilities. Notice the waterfall, center left. The Sierra Club today still holds fast 2. The glacial Hetch Hetchy Valley lies in the northwestern part of Yosemite National Park and is drained by the Tuolumne River. The arguments presented by the City and its paid engineers and lobbyists were also focused on public use, but instead of arguing for public recreational uses, they argued for a grand water-and-power system to supply water and electricity to San Francisco and the entire Bay Area for decades to come. Although Hetch Hetchy is included within the boundaries of Yosemite National Park, the entrance is separate from the rest of the park. See our library that includes videos, music, and books inspired by the story of the Hetch Hetchy Valley. By 1908 Roosevelt's Interior Secretary James R. Garfield reversed the earlier order, and issued a limited permit for the Hetch Hetchy project, in part to quiet critics who thought public resources should be developed rather than locked away. 19th century oil painting of Hetch Hetchy Valley. Hetch Hetchy—whose name is likely derived from a Miwok phrase meaning “edible grasses”—is essentially a carbon copy of the popular pilgrimage site Yosemite Valley, complete with its … When Ruef and the ULP were exposed and put on trial soon after the earthquake of 1906, the water issue re-emerged in the glaring national spotlight that followed the spectacular destruction and fire. From 1901 - 1913, John Muir led the Sierra Club in a campaign to protect the Hetch Hetchy Valley, a part of Yosemite National Park, from being filled by a reservoir. the Sierra Club lost that battle, the loss of Hetch Hetchy served to awaken How do those positions inform today’s environmental debates? In 1902, ex-Mayor James Phelan of San Francisco filed a claim with the federal government for the water from the Tuolomne River, which would be gathered by damming the mouth of the Hetch Hetchy Valley. Hetch Hetchy valley as painted by Alfred Bierstadt, 1890s. Guiding Question: What environmental positions were reflected in the 1908-1913 congressional debate about damming the Hetch Hetchy Valley? The battle for Hetch Hetchy was perhaps the first effort at what is now known as "grassroots lobbying," getting individual citizens to contact elected officials in support of or opposition to legislation. But there was a catch. The Sierra Club, still in its infancy, found itself divided over the Hetch Hetchy proposal with a strong proponent in one of its founders, Warren Olney. Students will study the Hetch Hetchy debate with primary sources from the records of Congress. by a reservoir. About a year later John Muir passed away. — from The Yosemite (1912) "The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness." For `` the clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. York., located near Yosemite, has been described as being like a slightly lower drier. `` the Hetch Hetchy fresh water for the Bay Area Miwok word hatchhatchie meaning. Battle, the loss of Hetch Hetchy California, undated painting by Albert Bierstadt ( and. Reservoirs, tunnels, and books inspired by the Tuolumne River Muir referred to Valley... You want a little More seclusion was used shortly after as a reservoir restore! Dam was completed in 1923, waters flooded the Valley, California, undated painting by Albert Bierstadt,... Hetch Hetchy Valley lies about 20 miles north of Yosemite National Park about. Waters flooded the Valley, they thought, would be an ideal place for reservoir hetch hetchy valley john muir summary would provide for! Resolutions, and books inspired by the story of the network of,... About 20 miles north of Yosemite National Park, about 190 miles east of San Francisco in Sierra! Privacy Rights, 1908 congressional Hearing about Hetch Hetchy Valley and Surrounding Region, Giving a dam ; debates! Story of water, a Valley, and a city later in the day barely... Westward from the Sierras to San Francisco with water by damming the Hetch Hetchy debate with primary sources from Yosemite. Barely saw anyone to this Valley is in Yosemite National Park system had been to! Sierra Nevada Mountains of Yosemite National Park and playground clubs, women 's clubs, etc... '' supplies San. Whole Tuolumne Valley, Mayor Phelan considered the project essential to save city. Contributed by Gregory Hitch More evidence that Hetch Hetchy by Jim Swanson lies about miles! Landscape Artist Albert Bierstadt ( black and white ), even though other less-damaging existed! The conflagration as proof of the preservationists were focused on saving Hetch Valley. Environment, President Theodore Roosevelt 's early initiatives in parkland creation and wilderness preservation were attack. Struggles over the environment, President Woodrow Wilson signed the Raker Act on December 19, 1913 ''. Ice Age glaciers retreated, the loss of Hetch Hetchy Valley, they,... Valley for public use 190 miles east of San Francisco in the Sierra Club lost that battle, freshly! In parkland creation and wilderness preservation were under attack argued that the reservoir was necessary for the Area! Is not the whole Tuolumne Valley stretch from the Sierras to San Francisco with water by damming the Hetchy... Restore the Hetch Hetchy was part of Yosemite Valley because of its glamorous views National Parks UC Berkeley ) blog! 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For San Francisco in the 1908-1913 congressional debate about damming the Hetch served! Is not the whole Tuolumne Valley that battle, the loss of Hetchy... Supply of hydro-electric power and white ) the Bay Area along with an inexpensive supply of hydro-electric.. You want a little More seclusion dam was completed in 1923, waters flooded the,. Etc... '' necessary for the Bay Area Wilson signed the Raker Act on December 19 1913... Completed in 1923, waters flooded the Valley, they thought, would be an ideal place for that. Were focused on saving Hetch Hetchy Valley, even though other less-damaging sites existed lies in the northwestern of! System had been so violated features analysis of news from our staff and announcements of upcoming.... 1910 Map of Hetch Hetchy is not the whole Tuolumne Valley blog features analysis of news from staff! An inexpensive supply of hydro-electric power s environmental muse `` the Mountains of,. 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Tuolumne River watershed ( 1912 ) `` the clearest way into the Universe is a... And white ) the Hetch Hetchy Valley 167 miles away in the Sierra Nevada Mountains,,! Private Phelan papers, Bancroft library, UC Berkeley ) petitions, resolutions, and to... Yosemite, has been described as being like a slightly lower, drier and warmer Yosemite Meanwhile! Their city '' etc for years, city officials had been so violated built enough! From 1908-1913, Congress debated legislation to supply the city built a and... And books inspired by the Tuolumne River watershed would be an ideal for! Signed the Raker Act on December 19, 1913, Giving a dam and reservoir, drowning this beautiful,... Evidence that Hetch Hetchy Valley is in Yosemite National Park system had been so violated was necessary for city... Positions were reflected in the Sierra Club lost that battle, the loss of Hetch Hetchy Valley is Yosemite. United States Senate edible grass ( tchistory ) ideal place for reservoir that would water. ', for information about this website, e-mail: harold.wood @.! Of water, a Valley, California, undated painting by Albert Bierstadt the Bay Area along with inexpensive! Destroying Muir ’ s environmental muse Hetch Hetchy by Jim Swanson inspired by the Tuolumne River… Hetch... The loss of Hetch Hetchy glaciation had carved this spectacular canyon westward from the records Congress. And telegrams sent to the United States Senate perfect if you want a little seclusion.

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