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FoJMB Newsletter 2007 04

FoJMB Newsletter 2007 04

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Published by fojmb
Friends of John Muir's Birthplace Newsletter No. 1, April 2007
Friends of John Muir's Birthplace Newsletter No. 1, April 2007

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Published by: fojmb on Apr 13, 2011
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Dunbar’s John Muir Association
Friends of John Muir’sBirthplace
Newsletter No. 1
Convener’s Letter Friends of the John Muir Birthplace‘An Inconvenient Truth’Tartan Week 2007California Here I ComeEast Lothian Walking FestivalRecent Visitors‘Still Walking the World’
Convener’s Letter
Dear Friends,This is the first newsletter to come to you under our new title of 
Friends of John Muir’s Birthplace’.
We have also decided to revertto our original A5 format which I hope you will agree is better, and itmakes for easier mailing.First of all, some exciting news of 
‘Still Walking the World’,
our newpublication of quotations from the writings of John Muir 
(You willunderstand the reason for the title when you buy the book!) It is thebrainchild of Will Collin who compiled a great number of Muir quotes. These he sent to a few of us who classed them as ‘A’(definitely), ‘B’ (maybe) or ‘C’ (perhaps not). The book, which willbe a companion to
‘John Muir’s Dunbar’ 
‘The Clifftop Trail’,
isthe end result. We hope that publication date will be early May.On the subject of books, the Birthplace currently has in stock a newedition of Muir’s
‘My Boyhood and Youth’ 
published by Birlinn of Edinburgh. This edition has a wonderful introduction by our own Dr David Anderson, who describes most authoritatively the Dunbar thatJohn Muir knew.The first week in April was Tartan Week in New York and this year Muir was included in a series on Scots who made it in America.Birthplace manager Jo Moulin was invited to give a keynotepresentation. She also participated in an exhibition by Edinburghphotographer Kenneth Paterson who has included Muir in his show.Another visitor to American shores this April is Pauline Smeed,senior assistant at the Birthplace. Pauline is presently at the JohnMuir House Historic Site, Martinez, California, on a staff exchange.All being well, next year a staff member from Martinez will come toDunbar and then hopefully every second year there will be moreexchanges of staff.I hope you enjoy the first ‘Friends’ newsletter.SincerelyJim Thompson
Why‘Friends of John Muir’s Birthplace’?
When Dunbar’s John Muir Association was formed in July 1994, it setout to create an organisation with its roots firmly in Dunbar but withmembership open to anyone anywhere with an interest in John Muir.The Association's objectives are:to advance the education of the public concerning John Muir, as theDunbar-born pioneer of world nature conservation, and his belief inthe unique and irreplaceable value of wild places and wild creaturesto implement John Muir's philosophy practically by conserving,restoring and enhancing landscape and wildlife in East Lothian andScotland.However, in the beginning, the ultimate goal was to create a JohnMuir Centre in Dunbar and considerable effort was put into achievingthis. After a number of set-backs, the house in which John Muir hadbeen born was purchased in 1998 and John Muir’s Birthplace wasopened to the public in August 2003.Since then DJMA has been pursuing its two stated objectives but, withthe opening of the Birthplace, we have become increasingly awarethat there is a new role to perform. Accordingly, members were askedat the AGM in October 2007 to approve a change of our name to
‘Friends of John Muir’s Birthplace’
and to add a further objective – “to support the ongoing work of the John Muir Birthplace Trust andthe staff of John Muir’s Birthplace”. Both were passed unanimously.So there has been a change of name and an additional focus, and weinvite ‘Friends’ old and new to help in any way they can – bysupporting events such as the forthcoming film night (see next page),by volunteering time to assist the staff in the Birthplace on anoccasional or regular basis or simply by declaring an interest bycontinuing/renewing/taking out membership of the ‘Friends’.
“Humanity is sitting on a ticking time bomb. If the vast majority of the world's scientists are right, we have just ten years toavert a major catastrophe that could send our entire planet into a tail-spin of epic destruction involving extreme weather,floods, droughts, epidemics and killer heat waves beyond anything we have ever experienced.” 
It sounds like a recipe for serious gloom and doom. Instead, itis from the publicity release for a remarkable and memorablefilm.
‘An Inconvenient Truth’ 
was released in May 2006 and,this year, won Oscars for best documentary feature and bestoriginal song, the first time for a documentary.
The filmfollows former American vice president Al Gore
s one-mancrusade to persuade the world to halt the progress of globalwarming.
Gore pulls no punches in explaining the diresituation, as he sees it, convinced that there is still time tomake a difference.
The film's distributor, Paramount, isdonating 5% of the box office receipts and Gore is donatingall of his proceeds from the film to The Alliance for ClimateProtection. To date it has grossed $50 million worldwide.
‘Friends’ are showing the film in Belhaven Parish Churchhall on Saturday 21 April.
All ‘Friends’ and friends arewelcome. Admission is by donation and, as a celebration of John Muir’s birthday on the same day, there will be ‘nibbles’and a glass of wine or a soft drink. The evening begins at6.30 pm, with
‘An Inconvenient Truth’ 
running from 7 pm. Itlasts for 94 minutes. So there will be time to discuss theissues it raises, or simply to enjoy the company.
Above: A typicalFriday afternoonworkshop at JohnMuir’s Birthplace.Right: Half Dome.Photo courtesy of Ken Paterson. Therewill be a specialexhibition of hiswork -
‘John Muir,Man and Landscape’ 
- at John Muir’sBirthplace, 30
Aprilto 13
May.Above: Poster for 
An Inconvenient Truth’ 
. This filmwill be shown onSaturday, 21
Aprilat Belhaven ChurchHall – see main textfor details.Right: One of thepupils from CampiePrimary Schooltakes part in theCitizenship Project.More on this in thenext newsletter!

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