The title page from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz Website

Welcome to the incredible world of Oz. There is much to know about this wonderful land, and on these pages I hope to tell you a lot about it, and help you find out where to find out more. Oz first started as a book, which grew into an entire series of books. They were first written by one man, but others wrote more books after him, and more books are being added to the series even now. There have also been many movies (maybe you've seen one of them on television?), plays, television productions and videos, toys, games, dolls, clothes, conventions, clubs, and an international fan following. I hope all Oz fans and those who want to learn more can find something they like here. Just scroll down to see what is available for you.

This site is maintained by me, Eric Gjovaag, and is a continuous work-in-progress. Therefore, I will be changing and adding things all the time. Please keep coming by to see what I've done.

All material on this site and the code to create it are copyright © 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 Eric P. Gjovaag. All rights reserved.

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Shortcuts for those of you who already know where you are going
[Questions and Answers] [Oz Links] [The Hanging Man] [The Meaning of Oz] [Oz News] [Oz Events Calendar] [Words From The Wizard] [Oz Blog] [Oz Teacher Lessons] [Oz Party Ideas] [Oz Bookshop] [Reviews] [Oz Dolls] [Oz T-Shirts, Cards, and Posters] [About This Site] [Site Awards and Accolades] [How to Help]

Want to read this page in another language?

Join the International Wizard of Oz Club
The International Wizard of Oz Club

The International Wizard of Oz Club has been uniting and educating Oz fans around the world since 1957. Members receive three annual issues of the Club's journal, The Baum Bugle, plus deals on the Club's literary journal, Oziana, and other publications, and news on Club conventions and other events. Come join your fellow Ozmatologists!

Frequently Asked Wizard of Oz Questions — and Answers!
The Curious Cottabus from Kabumpo in Oz.

Illustration by John R. Neill from Kabumpo in Oz, © 1922 The Reilly and Lee Co.

It's been updated at last! And with a whole new look and style! Who wrote the Oz books? What was Dorothy's last name? Can you really see a man hanging himself in the movie? These and many, many other questions are answered here, in an extremely comprehensive list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) about The Wizard of Oz — and their answers as well. If you have an Oz question, this is the place to look first!

Links to Other Oz Sites
There are many places to go from here.

Illustration by John R. Neill from The Road to Oz, © 1909 L. Frank Baum.

Here you can find other Wizard of Oz and related websites that I have found and that I hope you will enjoy. If your question isn't answered in the question-and-answer section above, maybe someone else has an answer for you here. Click on the picture to visit some of them. This is also the place to look for sites devoted to Oz pictures, Oz sounds, Oz shopping, Oz personal pages, Oz fun, online Oz books...

The "Hanging Man"
Just what is that Dorothy is looking at?

Image from the movie The Wizard of Oz, © 1939 Loews, Inc., © renewed 1966 MGM.

Far and away, this is the most frequently asked question I get from those who view this page: Is there a man (or Munchkin) hanging himself in the background in the movie? In fact, I got so sick and tired of answering this question that I wrote my FAQ and set up this website mostly so I wouldn't have to explain it all the time! Yet even though the answer is readily available here on my website, people continue to ask me. Many were the days when I had more than one note asking me about this in my e-mail inbox. Well, to satisfy all of you who have sought out this website just to ask me this question, I plan on setting up a page devoted entirely to answering this question in the near future, with screen grabs and lots of other information. Until then, however, this link to the question and answer in my FAQ will have to do. For other points of view, you can check out any of the links listed below.

[Link 1] [Link 2] [Link 3] [Link 4] [Link 5] [Link 6] [Link 7] [Link 8 — I — II — "Rebuttal"] [Link 8] [Link 9]

Since I feel that these links adequately answer the question, any e-mails pertaining to this topic will no longer be answered.

The Meaning Behind The Wizard of Oz
1939 Oz political cartoon

Cartoon by Herblock, first appeared in the Utica Observer Dispatch, August 31, 1939

Now that the issue of the hanging man has been dealt with, this is the next biggest question I get asked about — what is the meaning behind The Wizard of Oz? Is it a fantasy quest where the goal is to get out of the fantasy? Is it a search for courage, intelligence, and passion, or a search for the true self? Is it the story of fraudulent politics in a media age, or a coming of age story where a girl finds her real power in her shoes? Is it the story of incomplete men in a post-feminist age, or a quest for home, for wholeness, for magic -- things we already have but just don't see? The most gripping answer, which most people seem to have heard about, seems to be that Baum wrote it as some sort of political manifesto -- except no one can agree as to which turn-of-the-century politics the story is talking about! The answers, such as they are, are here in this website, but until I can create a page devoted to the many, many different interpretations of the story (none of which, I might add, can be considered the "true" meaning), these links will have to do.

[Answer in the FAQ] [Link 1 (the article that started it all)] [Link 2] [Link 3] [Link 4] [Link 5] [Link 6] [Link 7] [Link 8]

Any e-mails I now receive dealing with this topic will not be answered.

And in case you were wondering about the above cartoon, it's considered to be the very first cartoon to use the characters from The Movie in a political context. The Tin Woodman is France, the Cowardly Lion is Great Britain, the Scarecrow is Poland, Dorothy is European Civilization, the Wicked Witch is Adolf Hitler, and the Winged Monkey is Benito Mussolini. The Monkey is saying, "Hey, Boss -- Maybe that lion isn't so cowardly!"

The long list of interpretive questions above is taken from an episode of the radio show Connections, copyright © 1998 WBUR, Boston, Massachusetts

The latest Oz news
Live from the Emerald City...

Illustration by John R. Neill from The Patchwork Girl of Oz, © 1913 L. Frank Baum.

All the latest news about Oz, updated whenever there is something to add. News is archived for the past year.

Upcoming Oz events
Stage productions and other Oz events.

Illustration by Frank Kramer from The Shaggy Man of Oz, © 1949 The Reilly and Lee Company.

Wizard of Oz performances and other events are held all over the world. Go here for a listing and more information on many of them, including television broadcasts.

The Wonderful Blog of Oz
The Wonderful Blog of Oz

Illustration by John R. Neill from The Giant Horse of Oz, © 1928 The Reilly and Lee Co.

Just a little web log where I can jot down little Ozzy thoughts, bits of news, and anything else that comes to mind.

Words From The Wizard
Words from the Wizard

Illustration by John R. Neill from The Lost Princess of Oz, © 1917 L. Frank Baum.

This was an occasional column on Ozzy issues of all types, written by Eric Gjovaag, this website's Webwizard. They have been archived here.

Wizard of Oz Lesson Ideas for Teachers
School is a little different in Oz...

Illustration by John R. Neill from Kabumpo in Oz, © 1922 The Reilly and Lee Co.

For teachers of all subjects and levels, here are some ideas for incorporating Oz into your classes. (Students can always let their teachers know about this part of the website, too...)

Wizard of Oz Party Planner
You can hold an Oz party like this!

Illustration by John R. Neill from The Road to Oz, © 1909 L. Frank Baum

Want to host an Oz party? This page will give you some ideas of what to do, plus help you find party supplies and favors.

Online Wizard of Oz Bookshop
The Scarecrow's doing some reading tonight.

Illustration by John R. Neill from The Scarecrow of Oz, © 1915 L. Frank Baum.

You can buy many Oz books and other Ozzy items here, and go straight to sources for other merchandise.

Pouring over the latest submissions.

Illustration by John R. Neill from Kabumpo in Oz, © 1922 The Reilly and Lee Co.

Reviews of all kinds of Ozzy merchandise. See what the users of this site recommend.

Oz Dolls
Some examples.

Photo courtesy Karyl Carlson.

One-of-a-kind handmade dolls of many, many Oz characters are available for sale here.

Oz T-Shirts, Cards, and Posters
Some examples.

Oz T-shirts, Cards, and Posters are now available through our own shop at Images are public domain images from the early Oz books. Show the world how much you like Oz!

If you have a request for a design, send it through this mail link.

About this website
Glinda's checking up on me...

"Hmm, who is this guy who's telling everyone about us here in Oz?"
Illustration by John R. Neill from The Marvelous Land of Oz, © 1904 L. Frank Baum.

All about me, why I have this site, and other things you might want to know.

Awards and Accolades

'For meritorious conduct, extraordinary valor, conspicuous bravery...'

Image from the movie The Wizard of Oz, © 1939 Loews, Inc., © renewed 1966 MGM.

Surfing the Net with Kids
As seen in the Surfing the Net with Kids column for August 16, 2006
Lace's Place Creativity Award
As seen in the December 9, 1999 issue of
The New York Times

and the March 20, 2000 issue of
The Cincinnati Post

and the January 29, 2001 issue of
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer
[Article 1] [Article 2]

How to Help

Do you enjoy what you see hear? As much as I enjoy running this site, it does cost to run. So please consider making a small donation. All you have to do is click your heels together three times on the button below.
Donate towards my web hosting bill!

Sad to say, the world that we live in is not as pleasant as the Land of Oz. But if we all try and do a little bit to help improve things, we can all make a big difference. If you want to know how to help, check out these links:

Network for Good —

These sites allow you to give to worthy causes with one mouse click, at no cost to you. Please visit them and their sponsors.

The Literacy Site
The Literacy Site gives books to children in need. Please click on their site every day to give books to as many children as possible.

The Hunger Site The Breast Cancer Site The Child Health Site The Rain Forest Site The Animal Rescue Site

Hey, kids! Want to make the world a better place? Do Something!

Youth Service America

Volunteer. Find out where and how at Servenet.

Help teachers around the country to teach through worthy projects at Donors Choose.
You can pick the classrooms and projects you wish to help.

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This webpage, its contents, and the code used to create it are copyright © 1996-2013 Eric P. Gjovaag.
All rights reserved. For full legal disclaimer, see the About This Site page