• Visitors appear very small amongst the redwood trees.

    Muir Woods

    National Monument California

History & Culture

In May 1945, Muir Woods was host to a very special international event. United Nations delegates meeting in San Francisco traveled to Muir Woods to honor the late President Franklin D. Roosevelt with a special memorial in a grove of redwood trees. Please visit the United Nations Memorial Service for President Roosevelt at Muir Woods page for more information.

 
historic image of men & women gathering among a tall stand of redwood trees
The United Nations Memorial service in Muir Woods, May 19, 1945
photo courtesy of Save the Redwood League
 
Old black & white photograph of William Kent (donor & benefactor of Muir Woods) & Stephen Mather (1st Director of the National Park Service) standing next to a large boulder with a plaque about Gifford Pinchot. The redwood tree they are leaning on was dedicated to Gifford Pinchot, The redwood tree name as the Pinchot Tree may be seen today.

W. Kent and S. Mather standing at the base of the Pinchot tree at Muir Woods National Monument.

Muir Woods has a rich and varied history, from its use by the Coast Miwok people, to its early days of tourism and the Mount Tamalpais Mill Valley Scenic Railway, to an era of conservation, to modern preservation. In each era, the forest has been affected by the actions of humans, for better or for worse.
Explore our history pages to learn more about the people and timeline!

See a synopsis of the Proclamation declaring Muir Woods a National Monument or learn the complete history of Muir Woods National Monument, by downloading the Muir Woods Historic Resource Study (25MB, PDF file).

Did You Know?

John Muir and William Kent with guest at Muir Woods Inn.

President Theodore Roosevelt declared Muir Woods the 10th national monument on January 9, 1908. The first one donated by private individuals William and Elizabeth Kent.