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During April 1962, I continued my evangelical mission of trying to interest younger people in the rewards of pursuing a hobby. I gave my Tarzan collecting talk (see TFT, vol. 5, no. 6, March 1992) to a troop of boy scouts in Clairton, Pa., about 20 miles south of Pittsburgh. Although every audience that listened to my speeches was different in age and background, some listeners were interested in the subject and intrigued by the fact that the hobby existed and had attracted so many devotees. Of course, there were always some who just couldn't get the message.
A few months later, I found myself responsible for making all the arrangements for the Burroughs Bibliophiles 1962 Dum-Dum, which was to be held September 2 in Chicago at the Pick-Congress Hotel, with the 20th World Science-Fiction Convention. This presented some logistics problems since I was working most of the summer in Minneapolis at a computer manufacturing plant. U. S. Steel had purchased a new computer that was being built in Minneapolis, and several of us computer programmers were installing our new programs there on the computer before its delivery to Pittsburgh.
My time was divided between Pittsburgh and Minneapolis. I had banquet tickets printed in Pittsburgh, with instructions that orders for these tickets were to be sent to my Pittsburgh address.
In Minneapolis there was a hotel that was part of the Hilton chain, as was the Chicago Pick-Congress Hotel. I went there and made arrangements for a banquet room and set up the menu for Chicago, working with the Hilton Hotel's local coordinator. When I had time to return to Pittsburgh, I mailed out the tickets that had been ordered, and counted up the number of people that the hotel would be serving. This was working out to be a three-city operation even though I never went to Chicago.
In the meantime, Vernell Coriell had contacted Mrs. J. Allen St. John, who agreed to be our Guest-of-Honor speaker at the banquet.
I had my worries about the long-distance arrangements, but it all came together for a good Dum-Dum. We had a turnout of 55 members. That was a good showing, considering that the Bibliophiles had only been in existence for two years.
A highlight of the Chicago gathering for me was going to St. John's studio with Vern and Stan Vinson to meet Mrs. St. John and escort her to the banquet. Hanging over the studio fireplace mantel was the St. John preliminary pencil drawing of Tarzan and Jane (now owned by Bob Barrett) for the oil painting commissioned by Vern. This oil painting was later reproduced as a House of Greystoke poster.
Long-time Burroughs fan Allan Howard gave the presentation speech for the first "Golden Lion" Award, here given to Mrs. St. John. At that time the award was an engraved silver bowl which, as I saw in later years, was kept in the studio sitting room. She gave a short speech, but without much insight into the relationship between Edgar Rice Burroughs and J. Allen St. John. She said that when Burroughs came to the studio it was all business talk, and she would leave them.
Larry Ivie (illustrator for the Canaveral Press edition of Gods of Mars and Editor-Publisher of Monsters and Heroes Magazine) had an impressive display of his Burroughs and science fiction art at the Convention. He was a Burroughs fan, and later produced his own illustrated dust jackets for six Edgar Rice Burroughs novels. It was interesting to listen to his insights into artistically interpreting Burroughs' prose.(c) 1992 Clarence S. HydeEDITOR'S NOTE: By the time you read this, our fellow Thurian, Bob Hyde, will have found James Parker's Trading Post and been directed to the Mutia Escarpment. If he can make it past the fierce Giboni and up the Escarpment, he'll be well on his way to the waterfall that hides the entrance to the Elephants' Graveyard.
Editor's Note No. 2: We're betting eight to five he makes it.
Our Man in Ngorongoro or,
Bob Hyde's 1992 African Safari
As mentioned in the September Thurian contribution (TFT no. 34), I did indeed go to Africa on Safari. In spite of five broken bones in my left foot, having a tumor removed from my thyroid gland, and balloon cardiac angioplasty on the left artery of my heart, I made it!
I left Pittsburgh on October 6 for Frankfurt, Germany, then on to Nairobi in Kenya, staying briefly at the famous Norfolk Hotel. I was with a tour group of 12 people plus the tour manager, who handled all of our arrangements. We traveled most of the time in seven passenger mini-vans, especially fitted for rough travel. Much of the time we went over ground that could not be referred to as roads - more like dirt paths.
I had a fabulous trip and saw all the big game animals. To me this was a real dream come true.
Four days in Kenya, in Nairobi and the Amboseti Game Reserve, where we saw giraffe, elephant, buffalo, wildebeest, zebra, monkeys, with snow-topped Mount Kilimanjaro as a backdrop.
We then crossed the border into Tanzania, staying for six days at four different lodges. I did find the Mutia Escarpment (actually the walls of the Ngorongoro Crater) and the fierce Giboni tribe (actually the Maasai natives). They were very aggressive and persistent in trying to sell carvings, jewelry, and other souvenirs. They just didn't want to hear 'No,' and would keep lowering the prices.
I climbed up the Escarpment and down the Escarpment (actually in a four-wheel-drive truck), and searched for the Elephants' Graveyard. I found some elephants, but no graveyard.
I saw many lions, elephants, hippos, buffalo, a few of the very scarce rhino, and two leopards. The driver-guide found leopards by looking for their tails hanging down from a tree. Leopards take their kill up into a tree to eat, to keep hyenas from stealing it.
We drove into the southern part of the Serengeti Plains and saw some of the great migration of the two million wildebeest and one million zebra from the northern Serengeti.
We went into a 'tropical rain forest' (a jungle) around Lake Manyara. The driver-guide said that in the late 1950s, a Hollywood film crew came into this jungle to film (parts of) a Tarzan movie.
This had to be one of the Gordon Scott films, probably Magnificent.
Back across the border into Kenya for 10 more days. We flew in a small plane over the Rift Valley (full of escarpments) to the Maasai Mara in the northern Serengeti. We stayed in tents overlooking the Mara River, where a large number of hippo lived.
A visit to a Maasai village of 14 cow-dung huts was a new experience. These Maasai were very friendly, with the girls of the village performing a dance with songs for us, and inviting us to view the inside of their huts. I went into two of the huts and saw how the Maasai lived in the dark. Only one small candle was used for light (no windows).
They were also persistent in wanting us to buy souvenirs.
In the Arberdare Mountain Reserve we stayed at the "Ark," which overlooked a night-lighted waterhole. That night I saw three lions attempting to bring down a Cape buffalo. All three were on its back, trying for the throat. The bloodied buffalo and lions were back and forth under the lights several times before the buffalo ran into the unlighted bushes, with the three lions hot after it.
Then on to Samburu where the reticulated giraffe and the gerenik live. Here we also found two cheetahs, one eating a fresh kill.
Our last night on Safari was at the very famous Mount Kenya Safari Club. At a height of 6400 feet on the slopes of Mount Kenya, exactly on the Equator, it was cold. A log fire was burning all night in each bedroom.
Then back to the Norfolk Hotel in Nairobi, where the tour group broke up. They left for New York and I went to Cairo to visit the Pyramids and take a cruise up the Nile. We stopped at several places to go ashore and tour the ancient temples and tombs.
From Egypt I flew to Rome where I toured the ancient ruins and visited with Franco Grillo. Franco publishes the old daily and Sunday Tarzan strips in comic-book format. We had a great visit even though I knew only a few words of Italian, and Franco even fewer words of English. On two occasions, Giuseppe, a bilingual friend of Franco's, acted as our interpreter. At other times, somehow we managed to make our thoughts and ideas clear to each other.
From Rome to Frankfurt, then to Pittsburgh and the end of a trip of five weeks plus one day. It was an exciting and educational journey, but it was great to be back home.(c) 1993 Clarence B. Hyde
In April of 1963, a reporter from the Asbury Park (N.J.) Press called me for an interview. This article, printed in their issue of April 4, was the result of that telephone interview.
Keeps Tabs on Tarzan
ASBURY PARK -- Tarzan, king of the apes, swings through the jungle at the age of 70 showing no signs of sagging muscles or graying hair. While the more civilized worry about nuclear bombs, he enjoys the simple life of a tailless monkey.
The ape man sprang from the imagination of Edgar Rice Burroughs a little over 50 years ago. He was 20 years old then. Burroughs, who died in 1950, went from near poverty to become a multimillionaire by exploiting the popularity of his imaginary monkey man.
Clarence Hyde, a computer programmer for U.S. Steel Corp. who lives in Pittsburgh, Pa., has perhaps the world's most complete record of Tarzan's escapades and the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs. He has the complete Tarzan comic strip since its beginning in 1930, and subscribes to the Asbury Park Sunday Press to keep his collection up to date.
It seems some papers aren't quite as ape about Tarzan as the Sunday Press, which has been carrying the strip for 23 years. Mr. Hyde says, "The Press has the complete strip . . . the same one the artist gets." Many papers carry a shortened version of the strip, Mr. Hyde said.
Mr. Hyde is founder and president of a 450-member international club called Burroughs Bibliophiles. He has 700 editions of the 60 books Burroughs wrote.
Tarzan's breast-beating scream carries well on a still night, and Mr. Hyde has books about him written in Arabic, French, German, Turkish, and Swedish, plus comic strips from Spain and Greece. He had parts of the 36 Tarzan movies, autographed pictures of the 13 movie Tarzans, and movie billboards of the leopard-skin clad wildman.
He has original drawings by Edgar Burroughs' son and other ape artists (Burroughs himself never drew Tarzan.) His collection includes countless magazines and comic books about life in the jungle and postmarks from the two towns named after Tarzan (Tarzana, Calif., and Tarzan, Tex.)
Why so ape on Tarzan?
"I've been doing it so long (33 years), I don't know what I'd do if I stopped," Mr. Hyde said. "Trying to get information is part of the game."
As you can read, not everything one tells a newspaper reporter comes out in print as it was told.
As an example, the article states that Burroughs was 20 years old when he wrote Tarzan of the Apes, and that the Tarzan adventure strip started in 1930 instead of 1929. At the time of the interview I had been collecting for 26 years, not 33 years. Newspaper reporters usually treat the subject of Tarzan in a joking manner, rather than on a serious note. Although at that time the Asbury Park Press printed the Sunday Tarzan feature as a full half page, it was reduced to a one-third page format several years ago.
Later in April another article, about new Burroughs books to be published, was printed in the Albany (NY) Knickerbocker News. I include it on page two for historical reference. This time the subject was treated in a serious manner.
I continued my "show business" career in May of 1963, when I was invited to give my Tarzan collecting talk and show early Elmo Lincoln Tarzan films at a meeting of an Explorer Scout Troop in McKeesport, PA. With this age group there seemed to be more interest in my subject, and it went over well.
In September, the Burroughs Bibliophiles fourth Dum-Dum was held in Washington, D.C. at the Statler Hilton Hotel. The club members had the facilities of a large suite at the hotel, and during the evenings, and far into the nights, many of us gathered there. It was an excellent place to meet both old and new friends.
Saturday evening Camille "Caz" Casadessus, who published the fanzine ERB-Dom, showed some slides and an amateur film of Bilbiophile Ward Dean as Tarzan in Disneyland. Ward, dressed as Tarzan, had managed to get into the Jungleland exhibit at Disneyland and his friends took movie film of him from the boat ride through Jungleland. This was not an approved Disney production. Caz also showed amateur films from Tarzana, and topped off the program with Elmo Lincoln in Tarzan of the Apes.
We did not have a luncheon nor an annual banquet, but did have a meeting on Sunday, with about 200 people attending. We were part of the World Science Fiction Convention, so we had a large group to draw from.
Sam and Chris Moskowitz gave an excellent slide and lecture presentation of artwork on Burroughs' stories, primarily from the pulp magazines.
On Monday there was a panel discussion, "Swords Against Edgar Rice Burroughs," with L. Sprague de Camp, Sam Moskowitz, and Dick Lupoff, with Allan Howard as moderator. Prompted by leading questions from Al and from the audience, they discussed several aspects of Burroughs' works, including the (then) newly discovered manuscripts. They came to the conclusion that although ERB was uneven as a writer, some of his works were so well done that they will live on for many, many years. Their conclusions seem to be fulfilled, from today's viewpoint.
We had a great time in Washington, and I was glad to see such a good turnout.
In November, 1963, a group of Burroughs Bibliophiles, mainly from Ohio and Pennsylvania, held a week-end gathering in Mansfield, Ohio at the home of Stan Vinson, our (then) Vice-President. This group usually held a get-together at Stan's every year. That year those present were: Caz, Steve Ellis, Ron Hamlin, Bob Horvath, Gordon Huber, John Szuch, Bill Thailing, and myself.
Stan had an impressive Burroughs collection, at that time probably the best in the world. That year he had just acquired an original Ace cover painting by Roy Krenkel, which he proudly showed us. Also, as was usual at these meetings, he showed one of the Tarzan films from his large film library. Altogether, 1963 was an interesting year for some of us Burroughs fans.(c) Copyright 1993 Clarence B. HydeTarzan Creator's Science Fiction Awaited
The Knickerbocker News ~ Albany, Tue.; Apr. 30, 1963
The real fans of Edgar Rice Burroughs like to think of him as a science-fiction writer rather than as the creator of Tarzan.
And it is those fans particularly who are waiting with bated breath for the publication by Canaveral Press of several Burroughs' manuscripts, hitherto unpublished.
The manuscripts were found among Mr. Burroughs' effects after his death in 1950 and have been in the possession of the ERB Corp., which Mr. Burroughs had formed as an operating company for his enterprises. Arrangements for their publication are being made by Canaveral with Hulbert Burroughs, a son of the author.
Canaveral Press is a small publishing firm which recently issued reprints of 11 of Mr. Burroughs' books that, with the expiration of copyrights, had passed into the public domain.
In recent years some of the early stories had become rare books, with copies bringing $20 in many, cases and in some cases as much as $60.
The books to be based on unpublished manuscripts will, in many instances, include both published works and works that appeared only in magazines. One will be Savage Pellucidar, which will take its title from an unpublished story, but will include three novelettes, which had appeared in magazines.
A new Tarzan story will be in the lot. It will be Tarzan and the Madman, but since the manuscript is only 56,000 words, short for a novel), the book will include a 15,000 word autobiography by Burroughs found among his manuscripts.
A SECOND Tarzan book is planned under the title, Tarzan and the Castaway. It will include a short novel and two short stories that had been published only in magazines.
Among the science fiction books will be Tales of Three Planets, a collection of three stories, one of which had never been published; Beyond the Farthest Star, and I Am a Barbarian.
After a time, if plans of the publishers go right, there might be books under these titles: If Tarzan Came to Hollywood Marcia of the Doorstep, More Fun, More People Killed! Murder at the Carnival, The Wizard of Venus, You Lucky Girl! and Two Gun Oak Flies South.
The manuscripts and books being prepared for publication are being edited by Richard Lupoff, an Edgar Rice Burroughs fan himself. (D. LaF.)
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