The Lost Princess of Oz
To My Readers
Some of my youthful readers are developing wonderful imaginations. This pleases me.
Imagination has brought mankind through the Dark Ages to its present state of
civilization. Imagination led Columbus to discover America. Imagination led Franklin to
discover electricity. Imagination has given us the steam engine, the telephone, the
talking-machine and the automobile, for these things had to be dreamed of before they
became realities. So I believe that dreams -- day dreams, you know, with your eyes wide
open and your brain-machinery whizzing -- are likely to lead to the betterment of the
world. The imaginative child will become the imaginative man or woman most apt to
create, to invent, and therefore to foster civilization. A prominent educator tells me that
fairy tales are of untold value in developing imagination in the young. I believe it.
Among the letters I receive from children are many containing suggestions of "what to
write about in the next Oz Book." Some of the ideas advanced are mighty interesting,
while others are too extravagant to be seriously considered -- even in a fairy tale. Yet I
like them all, and I must admit that the main idea in "The Lost Princess of Oz" was
suggested to me by a sweet little girl of eleven who called to see me and to talk about the
Land of Oz. Said she: "I s'pose if Ozma ever got lost, or stolen, ev'rybody in Oz would be
That was all, but quite enough foundation to build this present story on. If you happen to
like the story, give credit to my little friend's clever hint.
L. Frank Baum
Royal Historian of Oz