21 August 2007

Nancy Tystad Koupal Receives Baum Memorial Award

Every year the International Wizard of Oz Club confers its L. Frank Baum Memorial Award on an individual who has "made an outstanding contribution to the work and purposes of the Club." And the purposes of that club, now fifty years old, are:

to (a) educate and encourage the interest of its members and the general public in the writings of L. Frank Baum and other authors about the Land of Oz; (b) facilitate the collecting of works related to Oz and its creators; (c) promote research about authors, illustrators, critics, and other matters related to Oz; (d) encourage original writing and other forms of expression about Oz; and (e) provide forums for people to meet and share their interest in the phenomenon of Oz.
As Eric Gjovaag reported last month, this year's winner of the Baum Memorial Award is Nancy Tystad Koupal, who has done more than anyone to shed light on Baum's experiences in Aberdeen, South Dakota, in the early 1890s. These years, which ended in economic and personal depression, were the inspiration for Baum's picture of "the great gray prairie" where Dorothy lives in The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

Among Nancy's contributions to Oz scholarship have been:

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