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

Sunday, August 9, 2020

Another Tin Man

Today I’m showing a cabinet card photo of the Tin Woodman from The Wizard of Oz. It may not be immediately obvious that that's who it is - the seller simply called it a photo of a sad clown - but it is Nick Chopper in his third act disguise.

By this point in the plot of the 1903 Broadway show, the Scarecrow and Tin Man are on the run from Pastoria, the ruler of Oz. They disguise themselves in white costumes, which would have been quite striking against the purples and lavender tones of the set. The Tin Man is seen in these clothes, possibly belonging to a comic sailor? Chauffeur? In this photo, he appears to be studying some sheet music - perhaps he's brushing up on his song, Must You?
I was uncertain as to the identity of this actor; it doesn’t look like David Montgomery, the original Tin Man, and the photographers imprint of St. Louis seemed to indicate that the photo was taken while touring. So I checked in with David Maxine, to see if he had any theories on the piece. David has been studying the show for many years, and is currently writing a blog, Vintage Broadway, that examines the show from its first inception. After a quick consultation, the opinion was that this is from the later Hurtig & Seamon tour of the show, probably ca.1907, and shows Frank Hayes as the Tin Man.
Hayes is perhaps best remembered for his film work with Keystone Studios, often in films with Mabel Normand and Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle. He was hired at the studio in 1914 and made dozens of comic shorts, moving into feature films, until his death from pneumonia in 1923.

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