Chicago Neighborhood Gets Yellow Brick Road Where Author Wrote Wizard of Oz
A yellow brick road was recently completed in Chicago’s Humboldt Park Neighborhood in memory of L. Frank Baum, who wrote “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”, while living at 1667 N. Humboldt Boulevard in 1899.
The yellow brick road at the corner of Humboldt and Wabansia spans about 70 linear feet and will also include a 5 x 11 ft Oz-themed mural by Chicago artist, Hector Duarte.
According to Block Club Chicago, the road and mural cost about $65,000 and was made possible by personal donations from nonprofit developer Bickerdike Redevelopment Corporation, along with their architect and general contractor partners.
Bickerdike recently finished rehabbing nine units of affordable housing on the corner. One of the units sits on the site of Baum’s former home, which was razed years ago, said Bickerdike CEO Joy Aruguete. [source]
Baum was 44 when he wrote “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz,” one of the most well-known children’s stories in American history.
Aruguete said not many people know Baum wrote the classic while living in Humboldt Park. She noted he was inspired by his time playing with kids in the neighborhood’s sprawling namesake park. [source]