Public Domain Super Heroes
The Shaggy Man

Real Name


First Appearance

The Road to Oz (1909)

Original Publisher

Reilly & Britton

Created by

L. Frank Baum


The Shaggy Man appeared at the Kansas home of Dorothy Gale one day in August, asking for directions to the nearby town of Butterfield so as to avoid going there by accident (a man there owed him fifteen cents, and the Shaggy Man did not want to be repaid). Dorothy agreed to show him the way but, after a short time the two became inexplicably lost. The Shaggy Man told Dorothy about a magical device he had called the Love Magnet, which causes the owner to be loved by everyone he meets. He claimed that this artifact was given to him by "an Eskimo in the Sandwich Islands."

Eventually Dorothy and the Shaggy Man realized that they were wandering in an unknown fairyland. They met Button-Bright and Polychrome, and eventually passed through the town of Dunkiton where King Kik-a-bray transformed the Shaggy Man's head into that of a donkey in honor of his great wisdom. Shaggy was instrumental in their escape from the Scoodlers, and when they reached the Deadly Desert the Shaggy Man called on Johnny Dooit to help them cross.

Arriving in the Land of Oz, the Shaggy Man bathed in the Truth Pond and regained his former head, but found that ever after he was forced to tell the truth. The travelers found that their journey had been prearranged so that Dorothy could attend a birthday party for Princess Ozma. The Shaggy Man was awed by the splendor of the fairy-realm, and resolved to live there permanently. Upon being questioned by Ozma, he revealed that he actually stole the Love Magnet from a girl in Butterfield, but was without remorse because doing so had allowed him to travel to Oz with Dorothy. Nevertheless, eager to be a good subject to the princess, he agreed to Ozma's decree that the Love Magnet be donated to the Emerald City and hung over the city gates.

The Shaggy Man serendipitously arrived to rescue Ojo, the Patchwork Girl, the Glass Cat, and the Woozy from Man-Eating Plants that captured them along the Yellow Brick Road in the Munchkin Country. He then guided them to the Emerald City.

The Shaggy Man later went in search of his long-lost brother, who was being held prisoner by the Nome King. He and his companions managed to rescue and disenchant this brother, and the Shaggy Man decided to give up the Land of Oz to remain with his brother and Betsy Bobbin. The prospect of losing him from Oz persuaded Ozma to allow these others to enter Oz.

Appearance and Demeanor

Shaggy is a big man with shaggy hair and whiskers, but a sweet smile and kind, blue eyes. His clothes were shaggy and his boots were shaggy and full of holes.

He sings and composes songs, though he doesn't want it known for fear of having to write a book or make a record or start an opera company.

He has been a wanderer all his life. Ozma has given him a suite of beautiful rooms in the Royal Palace of Oz, but he often leaves the Emerald City for weeks at a time. He often carries Professor Wogglebug's Square Meal Tablets to provide nourishment in a small convenient size, though he also enjoys apples as often as possible.

Public Domain Appearances

  • The Road to Oz
  • The Emerald City of Oz
  • The Patchwork Girl of Oz
  • Tik-Tok of Oz
  • The Scarecrow of Oz
  • The Lost Princess of Oz
  • The Magic of Oz


While the original character who appeared in Oz books published before 1923 is in public domain, the versions of the character used by Buena Vista Pictures Distribution, Disney, Caliber Comics, Marvel Comics or post-1923 Oz books are NOT in the public domain.

See Also