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On May 17, 1900, L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was first published in Chicago, Illinois

May 17, 2026

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every year that begins at 12:00 am on day 17 of May, repeating indefinitely

On May 17, 1900, L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was first published in Chicago, Illinois. The popular book was the first in a series of fourteen (!) and was adapted into the famous 1939 movie, The Wizard of Oz.

Though the story took influence from classic fairy tales and Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, it features distinct elements of the American Midwest, such as scarecrows, vast cornfields, and tornadoes.

Did you know? Dorothy’s familiar ruby red slippers weren’t actually ruby red in the book, but silver. The color was changed for the 1939 movie to be more eye-catching on-screen.

 

 

Dorothy meets the Cowardly Lion, W.W. Denslow, 1900

-Written by Anna Zemaitaitis, Communications and Design Officer

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May 17, 2026
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