Squirrel and John Muir

by Emily Arnold McCully

Naturalist John Muir is seen through the eyes of Floy, a ten-year-old girl who lived... read more

Naturalist John Muir is seen through the eyes of Floy, a ten-year-old girl who lived with her family in Yosemite Valley in 1868. The valley was just beginning to be a tourist attraction, and Floy’s father, James Hutchings, made his money hosting visitors in his small hotel and guiding them through the natural wonders of the area. “As if the Fates had sent him,” John Muir showed up looking for work and immediately began assisting Hutchings with improvements to the land. Floy, known by her family as “Squirrel” for her wild ways, was a daring and curious child and was quickly taken with Muir’s confidence and courage in the rugged surroundings. He taught her many things, most notably to be a careful observer of nature. Together they explored every nook and cranny of the valley. Muir was convinced that glaciers had carved through the land millions of years ago, creating a truly unique and spectacular landscape. No one believed him at first, but eventually his theory was proven true. Emily Arnold McCullybright watercolors pay tribute to the beauty of the setting, and her research is carefully documented in a bibliography at the end of the volume. (Ages 8–12)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2005

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