While the Alice of Lewis Carroll’s “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” was a fictional British character, she has touched the hearts of young and old worldwide, particularly in the United States.
So it will come as no surprise that many of this year’s commemorations of the 150th anniversary of the novel’s 1865 publication are taking place in this country, also the headquarters of the thriving Lewis Carroll Society of North America.
Exhibitions that are already underway include “Peanuts in Wonderland,” at the Charles M. Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa, Calif., through April 26, which displays Schulz’s parodies of the Carroll tale and of its illustrations by John Tenniel. A show running through mid-June at the Vassar College Archives and Special Collections Library features material from its children’s books collection.
An exhibition through July 6 at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin features 200 items, including Salvador Dalí illustrations for a 1969 edition of “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”; a restored 1933 paper filmstrip, called “Alice and the Mad Hatter”; and an area where children and the young at heart can enjoy a pretend tea party. Exhibitions are planned at the Houghton Library at Harvard, starting May 18, and at the Hornbake Library at the University of Maryland in September.
Many of the main events will unfold in New York, where the Morgan Library & Museum will display Carroll’s original manuscript, on loan from the British Library, from June 26 through Oct. 11. The exhibition will include items related to Carroll’s young muse, Alice Liddell, including his hand-colored photograph of her; her writing case and purse; and Carroll’s diary entry of July 4, 1862, the day be began to compose the story on a boating excursion on the Thames with her. The show will include original drawings and hand-colored proofs of Tenniel illustrations.
Lewis Carroll was the pseudonym of Charles Dodgson, a University of Oxford mathematician who wrote “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland” and its 1871 sequel, “Through the Looking-Glass and What Alice Found There” for Alice, a daughter of his Oxford dean, Henry Liddell.