Jack's head is a very large carved pumpkin that resembles the wickedly jolly expression of a traditional Halloween pumpkin. His tall figure is made entirely from bark and dead tree limbs of solid hickory and jointed with wooden pegs. His neck is a sharp stick upon which his pumpkin head is placed. His first set of clothing consisted of purple trousers, a red shirt, a pink vest with white polka dots, stockings, and shoes. He has other outfits, all with the same lack of color coordination.
Jack is not known for his intelligence which seems to depend on the quality and number of the seeds in his pumpkin-head at that time. However he does manage to come up with random bits of wisdom and common sense. He is also shown to be quite skilled at making vegetable-themed houses.
History of Pumpkinhead
Jack was made by a little orphan boy named Tip with the intention to scare his guardian, an old and mean wannabe Wicked Witch named Mombi as a prank. However, instead of being frightened, Mombi used Jack to test her new Powder of Life that she had recently bought from some Magician who lived nearby. Mombi sprinkled the powder all over Jack and after saying the magic words the powder worked and Jack instantly came to life.
When Tip decided to run away from Mombi for good, he took Jack with him and headed south for the Emerald City. After many adventures with the Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, the Wogglebug and the Gump, it was eventually revealed by Glinda the Good Witch and Mombi that Tip was actually Princess Ozma, the long lost daughter of Oz's old king named Pastoria who ruled the land long before the Wizard arrived and took over.
- Even though Ozma was transformed back to her true form by the end of their adventure and put back into her rightful position as Oz's official ruler, Jack will occasionally call her "father" as well as "mother". (The Marvelous Land of Oz)
Later, Jack settled in a house in the middle of a pumpkin field in the Winkie Country. He spends much of his time growing pumpkins to replace his old heads, which eventually spoil and need to be replaced. Apparently, Princess Ozma carves new heads for Jack when necessary. The old heads are buried in a graveyard on his property. (The Road to Oz) Jack also designed a five story, jewel-encrusted, corn-shaped mansion for the Scarecrow. (The Emerald City of Oz)
Once, Princess Ozma sent Jack with the Sawhorse to rescue a pair of lost children from the woods at the west of Oz. His pumpkin head was smashed as a result of a run-in with the Squirrel King, but the Wizard of Oz came to his rescue. ("Jack Pumpkinhead and the Sawhorse")
Peter Brown, (a little boy baseball pitcher from Philadelphia) while reminiscing about his previous visit to Oz, suddenly found himself landing right into Jack Pumpkinhead's front yard in the Winkie Country. Peter and Jack set off together for the Emerald City, but took a wrong turn and ended up traveling through the Quadling Country. (Jack Pumpkinhead of Oz)
- Jack Pumpkinhead was the inspiration for Jack Skellington from Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas.
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