Children's Lit

Five Facts About The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

  • Oct 14, 2013

1. Frank L. Baum worked in many trades before he wrote The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, including publisher, poultry breeder, door-to-door salesman and newspaper editor.



2. He also enjoyed moderate play writing success, staging productions in a theater his father constructed for him. Sadly a fire consumed the location and destroyed the only known copies of many of Baum’s scripts.



3. When the time came to produce The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, the publisher refused to pay for the colour illustrations that would become key to the success of the work, so Baum and artist William Wallace Denslow paid for the work to be done out of their own pockets.



4. The book’s bibliography is complicated because the text, colour plates and binding were produced separately and a number of changes were made following the first printing.


5. The stage version of the book, which opened in Chicago in 1902 and ran on Broadway for 293 nights, was quite a bit different from the book and aimed at an adult audience. For example, the Wicked Witch of the West was eliminated entirely from the script.

Sean Samuels

Sean is a bookseller in the Las Vegas gallery. Originally from the UK, he has a degree in English from the University of Bristol and an interest in photography. He has served as the US Editor for Hungry Eye Magazine, the Deputy Editor for Photography Monthly Magazine, and as a Script Editor for the BBC. When not selling books, he enjoys watching films and exploring the US backcountry and is a volunteer with Red Rock Search and Rescue in Las Vegas.

More Info


One Response to “Five Facts About The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”

  • Louie Torres says:

    I Have 8 books from the Wizard of Oz series . What condition do they have to be for them to be of any value . Just need to get them out of my garage