Baums in Egypt, 1906

June 4, 2019 @ 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Join us on June 4th at 7 pm in the Community for a trip to Egypt with L Frank Baum, presented by Egyptologist and Baum expert David Moyer.

L. Frank Baum’s successful fairy tale The Wonderful Wizard of Oz published in 1900 was turned into an even more successful musical extravaganza in 1902 opening in Chicago and moving to New York City where it played for several months and then toured the U.S. for several years thereafter.  With the profit from the show, Baum and his wife Maud opted to take a tour to Egypt and Europe in 1906. Their tour to Egypt was organized by the Thomas Cook travel company and lasted for six weeks during which they visited Cairo, Luxor, and Aswan.  Baum was an excellent photographer and took numerous pictures of the sites the two visited. The originals still exist in two albums in the possession of his great-grandson, Robert Baum. Several years ago, I had the idea of doing a slide lecture juxtaposing Baum’s photos with my own of the same sites.  Bob, a good friend, turned the still photos into slides for me and I put together a dual projection lecture. Along with the slides I quoted from Maud Baum’s letters home describing what they saw. Her letters are both informative and descriptive (they had an excellent guide and guide book) and are often quite humorous.  Unless noted otherwise, Baum’s photos (in a very nice sepia color) are on the left and my own on the right. In a few cases, not having a Baum photo or one of mine, I’ve used one or ones of the same period.

David Moyer is a summa cum laude graduate of the City College of New York and Hunter College with a BA degree in Egyptology.  He has lectured on ancient Egypt to archaeological groups in the U.S. and the U.K., is a former member of several archaeological societies and has often led tours to Egypt.  He joined the staff of Kmt: A Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt in 1990 and since 1994, he has written a column for each of the magazine’s quarterly issues titled “For the Record” on Egyptological news around the world  He is also a recognized expert on the life of Wizard of Oz author L. Frank Baum particularly Baum’s and his wife’s 1906 “grand tour” of Egypt, a subject on which he has often lectured.

This program is free and open to the public. Please call the Library 315.655.9322 with questions.