Welcome to my blog, featuring various pieces from my collection of Oz books, artwork and memorabilia!

Friday, March 27, 2009


L. Frank Baum wasn't the only one to work for Reilly & Britton under a pseudonym. John R. Neill illustrated at least one book under the name Ivin Ney - as to why, I really can't imagine! A Knight of the Wilderness was published in 1909, and contains 6 color plates by Neill under the assumed name. The book deals with Abraham Lincoln's years in Illinois. After a little thought, the pseudonym does make some sense - it's a kind of Russian-ized version of his real name (Ivin/John, Ney/Neill).

I don't know of any other examples of Neill working under this alias. 1909 was a busy year for him, with The Road to Oz and the start of the Neill Gift Book series of poetry books. Maybe Reilly & Britton was worried about too much exposure in various genres for their popular Oz artist. The ink and wash style of the illustrations for A Knight of the Wilderness is very much in line with the poetry books or Neill's magazine work of the time, as opposed to his Oz drawings.

1 comment:

Bill Campbell said...

I didn't think to mention above that in 1909 Neill was also drawing his "Little Journeys of Nip & Tuck" comic page for the Philadelphia North American.