William and Elizabeth Kent: Contradictions of Conservationists

William Kent and Elizabeth Thacher Kent have been iconic figures in Marin County for more than a century. As philanthropists and civic leaders, they are best known for donating the pristine redwood grove that became Muir Woods National Monument, part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. But there was another side to both of them. William Kent fought to exclude Chinese and Japanese immigrants from this country, while Elizabeth Kent went to jail to win the right for women to vote.

Today, Muir Woods and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area welcome all visitors – including the descendants of those Americans whom one of its founders, William Kent, wanted to bar from our shores.

Read more about William Kent: Conservationist and Anti-Immigrant Politician
Read more about Elizabeth Kent – Suffragist, Jailbird and Biographer

Last updated: April 4, 2018