Discover the Secrets of an Enchanted World

Baum’s Oz meets the Hidden History (comparative mythology)

A Noctuary for Your Thoughts

Fantasy painting, The Gates of Dream, by Xeeming on deviantart.com.

The Gates of Dream, by Xeeming on deviantart.com

Noc´tu`a`ry
n.1. A record of what passes in the night; a nightly journal; – distinguished from diary.

If you could see the future, would you write it down to remember? If you could see the past, would it be important to record it? If you saw honestly, would you want it inscribed, so it would last forever? If you could record your dreams, would you?

The answer, for me, is a resounding yes to all of these questions. But then comes the next question,  why? Why would you want to record your dreams? (more…)

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Cabbages and Cyclones: The untold story behind Dorothy’s story

ID-10068558_decorativeCabbageHow do cabbages verify the hidden history behind Dorothy’s trip to Oz? If the author thinks it is important enough to put into the novel, it must be significant, right? Of course. As I did some research, I discovered some very interesting historical facts that bear out L. Frank Baum’s classic story, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.

Dorothy’s journey perfectly matches with the mentions of cabbages in the original text. Follow along, and we’ll explore the facts together after the jump.

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A Smashing Good Time – the Wicked Witch of the West

The Wicked Witch of the West Few villains are as iconic as Margaret Hamilton’s Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz (MGM, 1939). Is it the green skin, the archetypal witch’s nose, or the wide-brimmed black hat that makes her so memorable? Maybe her screeching voice is what sticks in your memory. The Wicked Witch of the West has had multiple incarnations in the 100+ years since L. Frank Baum first published his novel, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Many additional authors have written about this witch. We will explore the four primary versions of the Wicked Witch of the West. These versions are:

  • The Wicked Witch of the West, from The Wizard of Oz (film, MGM, 1939).
  • Elphaba, from Gregory Maguire’s Wicked: The Life and Times of The Wicked Witch of the West.
    Note: This is the original version of the character made famous in the Broadway musical, Wicked.
  • The Wicked Witch of the West, from L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
  • Ondri-baba, from Tarl Telford’s Hidden History of Oz books.

What makes each of these versions different? Who is the Wicked Witch of the West, anyway? (more…)


An Oz where dreams change the world

With the announcement of a fourth Oz-inspired TV series, there are a lot of people on the interwebs that are justifiably annoyed. Why take a classic tale and re-spin it again and again? Simple answer – it’s the 75th Anniversary of the MGM Wizard of Oz movie (1939) and Warner Bros. owns the rights.

With all of these versions of Oz done wrong, where are the versions of Oz done right? Where is the land that Baum built? (more…)


Zombies in Oz

A Wheeler, from Disney's movie, Return to Oz.

A Wheeler, from Return to Oz

The ill-fated kickstarter campaign for Ozombie (sponsored by the creators of American McGee’s Alice) notwithstanding, have you ever wondered if there could be zombies in Oz?

I assure you, dear reader, that such a thing can be, but not in the way that you might expect. It requires dark magic, a witch’s blood, and a mechanical construct powered by the magic of the brick roads. Intrigued? (more…)


Munchkin Civil War

The Lollipop Guild, from the 1939 movie

Munchkins, you know, the short people in the Wizard of Oz movie. Why are they so short? Why do they like blue?

L. Frank Baum wrote four races into The Wonderful Wizard of Oz – Munchkin, Winkie, Quadling, and Gillikin. Then there were the folks in the Emerald Lands – the accepted term is Ozian, which Baum used himself in three of his books.

As I was working on Hidden History of Oz, Book 2, I noticed something peculiar. Munchkins and Gillikins have the same suffix – kin. Could they be related? I believe so.  Walk with me a while and I’ll tell you.

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Intersections of Oz

Intersections of Oz

This handy infographic displays the interrelationship of Oz stories.
There are a lot of Oz stories out there, and we’re about to discover even more. Find out where The Hidden History of Oz series, written by Tarl Telford, fits into everything.


Dreamers in Oz

How did Dorothy get to Oz? How did Oscar Diggs (aka The Wizard) get to Oz?

The simple answer is that they flew. With all of the satellite technology that we have available to us now, you would think that Oz would show up on Google Maps, but it doesn’t. The reason is simple – there is only one way to get to Oz.

Or, put another way, only dreamers enter Oz. Proof after the break. (more…)


Powered by Dreams

Dream City, by Paul Klee, courtesy wikipaintings.org

The basic premise of the Hidden History of Oz is “dreams determine reality.” Compare this with the basic premise set forth by L. Frank Baum in his written introduction to The Wonderful Wizard of Oz:

“… a modernized fairy tale, in which the wonderment and joy are retained and the heartaches and nightmares are left out.” (emphasis added)

As stated on this site, “There is that history which is celebrated … and that which is hidden.” Baum told simple stories with no explanation. They have enchanted generations. The fairy tales of the past have been lost in the shadows as today’s knowledge has expanded. It is time to revisit the fairy tales and discover their meaning for our generation. (more…)


Wrong Directions: Secrets of the Compass Rose

Hidden History Compass Rose, by Tarl Telford

Hidden History Compass Rose, by Tarl Telford

Compass Rose for the Hidden History of Oz. Note that the directions East and West are reversed from the "civilized world"


The compass rose in Oz has been a controversy for more than a century. The directions East and West are reversed on the first “official” map of Oz.

Was this a mistake? Or are directions truly different in Oz?  (more…)


The Science of Oz (sort of), Part 1

The Lion and the Tortoise, painted by Eugene Delacroix, 1835

Lion and Tortoise, by Eugene Delacroix, 1835. Public Domain image courtesy wikipaintings

Science enriches our lives, broadens our understanding, and encourages us to explore the world we live in. Science can also be a big downer when it comes to magic and myth. Sometimes knowing the science of stories makes them less … well, magical. That is the risk we take in this post.  (more…)


Annotating Oz

Gayelette, the Ruby Sorceress

Gayelette, the Ruby Sorceress The Hidden History of Oz came to life over several years. It didn’t spring fully-formed from my forehead. The concept began when I discovered clues cleverly dropped by L. Frank Baum that told the story of Oz before the Wizard came …

But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s take this one step at a time.

Why annotate Oz?

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