Edgar Rice Burroughs
Bio: Edgar Rice Burroughs, the writer who created Tarzan and fantastic tales of science fiction, was born February 23, 1875 in Chicago, Illinois to Major George Tyler Burroughs and Mary Evaline (Zieger). Burroughs unsuccessfully pursued a series of careers until he was 35 years old: soldier, cowboy, salesman, and other singular interests. It wasn't until his Oak Park years, between 1914 and 1919, that Burroughs became a successful author. While living in Chicago and Oak Park, Burroughs created many of his most memorable characters. The first Tarzan book, Tarzan the Ape Man, was completed in May 1912. Burroughs was also known for writings including the "John Carter of Mars" books, magazine stories, and many other published works. Burroughs captivated many children and adults alike with his imaginative tales. Today his legacy lives on in print, film, video and online.
Burroughs' ERB, Inc. created one of the world's first multimedia merchandising empires--complete with Tarzan merchandizing tied in to the movie versions of his tales. It is fascinating to speculate on the influences and melieu that Burroughs may have created for the young Ernest Hemingway, who was a teenager living in Oak Park at that time, just a few blocks from the Burroughs' residence. Burroughs' popularity has continued to rise from the publication of the first Tarzan novel until today. Burroughs died of a heart ailment on March 19, 1950.