He was co-founder of the Sierra Club and prolific in many disciplines: LeConte published works on geology, monocular and binocular vision, philosophy, art, evolution, and religion. His chief contributions, however, related to geology: publishing Elements of Geology (1878) and published several books on religion and science that endorsed his belief in theistic evolution.
JOSEPH NISBET LECONTE (1823-1901) SIGNED CARD, “Very truly yours, Joseph LeConte”, on a card 3.5 x 2.5, by the American physician, geologist, professor at the University of California at Berkeley and early California conservationist. Received his medical degree in 1845 and practiced for a few years before entering Harvard and studying natural history under Louis Agassiz and developed a keen interest in geology. During the American Civil War he continued to teach in South Carolina and was involved with the Confederate Mining Bureau. Post war he was discouraged by Reconstruction and moved to Berkeley, California to accept a position at the newly established university, where he stayed for the rest of his life. He is also noted for his exploration and preservation of the Sierra Nevada of California. He explored the Yosemite Valley with John Muir and became concerned about resource exploitation would ruin the Sierra so he co-founded the Sierra Club with Muir and others in 1892. He died in Yosemite Valley in 1901.