Friday, August 31, 2012


While on our great summer trip, Eric and I made our first visit to Aberdeen, South Dakota, where L. Frank Baum lived in the late 1880s and early 1890s. I will blog in more depth about Aberdeen in the coming days, but I mention it here as it makes for an easy connection to this month's Hungry Tiger Tale - the little-known Baum lyric "Haldeman."

Eric and I spent the afternoon at the Alexander Mitchell Library in Aberdeen, which houses a very interesting Baum collection. One of the things I was happy to be able to examine was a copy of the Uplifters Hymnal, a song book for the Uplifters Society that Baum helped form within the Los Angeles Athletic Club.

I had long wanted to look at a copy of the "hymnal," hoping it would contain the music by Louis F. Gottschalk to go with certain of Baum's lyrics that were known to survive. Alas, the hymnal contains only more lyrics and no printed music. One of the lyrics is the song "Haldeman," about Harry Marston Haldeman, Baum friend and co-founder of the Oz Film Manufacturing Company. His grandson H. R. Haldeman was Richard Nixon's White House Chief of Staff who was eventually convicted of conspiracy in the Watergate Scandal.

The song is meant to be sung to the tune "I'll Get You" by Will Cobb and Gus Edwards. So click here to go read "Haldeman."

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

As I Was Saying . . .

Has anyone noticed that I haven't been blogging quite as much as I used to? Well, what with Comic Con, the Winkie Convention, a variety of house guests, and a three week, eight thousand mile road trip - who's had time! Excuses, excuses ...

Well, now that that's out of the way, what better way to get back into the thick of things than with a good old-fashioned White Edition Wednesday post! One of the things Eric and I did on the road trip was scour antique malls and junk shops and little grungy bookstores. At one of the first shops we stopped at I spotted a few "white editions." One of them was a copy of Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz - the oddball variant where Reilly & Lee bound up their leftover 1950s text blocks in "white edition" covers. There are a fair number of these floating around, but I had never actually examined one. I bought it, of course, and I was surprised to see it had blank endpapers, not the usual Road to Oz endpapers. No one who reported to me on this variant even mentioned the lack of illustrated endpapers, so I don't know if this is a new variant or if my bibliographical elves simply didn't notice a lack of illustrated endsheets in their copies.

So, Ta dah! Still another "White Edition" variant!  You'll be getting a number of other reports on my travel finds in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.