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1899: L. Frank Baum's OZ-Inspiring Macatawa Park

Bollman, William
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Trafford Publishing

1899 tells-and shows-exactly what L. Frank Baum experienced at Macatawa Park the very summer he was writing The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. From the long board walks through the woods, to the groups of cottages said to have given inspiration for Munchkinland, to much more. This entry in the Vintage Photo Album Series focuses on a 110-plus-year-old vacation photo album assembled by Hattie A. Talcott of her summer of 1899 at a mystical Chicago summer playland called Macatawa Park. She traveled by horse cab and overnight steamer across Lake Michigan to get there as did much of Chicago's high society-including, as it turns out, L. Frank Baum! You see 1899 was an extremely important summer for L. Frank Baum, and Macatawa Park was an extremely important place as his favorite summer place provided inspiration for important aspects of the beloved The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. See what similarities you can find in the photos! In 1899, author William Bollman melds Talcott's amateur photographs (taken with a turn-of-the-century Kodak No. 2 Bulls-Eye camera), with an abridged version of L. Frank Baum's satirical classic Tamawaca Folks to give the reader a sense of living in L. Frank Baum's shoes if but for that one important summer. These uncanny photographs-never before published-show us the actual life settings that undoubtedly inspired numerous aspects in both The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and Tamawaca Folks, in this entry in the Trip Back in Time: Vintage Photo Album Series.

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