Sunday, August 02, 2009

Knott's Berry Farm Miniature Train, August 1958

Here's an image that I found in a box of miscellaneous slides; It is from Knott's Berry Farm, and shows the "Knott's Miniature Train". I have to admit that I didn't even know that Knott's had a miniature train! But when I go back and look at various maps of that park, I see that the mini train was there for many years. Anybody know if it's still there? It's hard to judge the scale in this photo, so I am wondering just how small the train was. Is it similar to Walt Disney's "Carolwood Pacific"?


In yet another box of slides, I found this somewhat damaged photo (undated) of two girls posing with a pair of friendly Indians. I love the expression on the youngest girl! There were also many Disneyland slides, some so badly faded and damaged (MUCH worse than this example) that I think they are beyond any reasonable restoration attempts. Bummer! I may still share some of them, as long as you don't mind their less-than-great appearance.

13 comments:

Anonymous said...

That (little) train circled the lake across from the farm proper on the other side of Beach Blvd. where the Cordellia K. paddle-wheeler did her thing. Honest.

TokyoMagic! said...

That second pic was taken in between Main St. and Market St...right in front of the Gold Trails Hotel. That structure dated back to 1868 and was moved to Knott's from it's original home in Prescott, Arizona. It has since been demolished and rebuilt.

The miniature train also no longer exists. I don't know where it ended up, but it was taken out in late 1982 or early 1983 when the Lagoon area was turned into a parking lot. At that time, they claimed they needed the additional parking spaces since Camp Snoopy was being built on what had previously been a parking lot. I think they also did not want Camp Snoopy to compete with the Lagoon area.

As a kid, I remember riding inside the train cars on little benches. I believe the driver sat in the coal bin part of the train. The train went all the way around the Lagoon and even had a tunnel. If you look closely, you can see the water from the Lagoon just beyond the train tracks.

Thank you, Major for these wonderful pics and memories!

Chiana said...

Cute. :)

I really do appreciate your efforts for high quality and always enjoy a swell lookin' pic but it's what's in the pic that matters most. So, share away Maj, they don't have to be in perfect nick. :)

Katella Gate said...

You know, maybe once a year you could have a "dented can & bruised fruit sale" and post all the really marginal stuff without commentary since it's being offered in the spirit of a fire sale.

Early Amusement Parks Of Orange County said...

Major

That train was used at Don Nixon's Restaurant and then went on to Knott's Berry Farm and then on to Castle Park it now sits at Bud Hurlbut's shop.

Major Pepperidge said...

The Nixon connection is interesting! I'm glad the train still exists at Bud's shop. Thanks for the info, Richard!

Anonymous said...

EAP of OC is got it. For those interested, a similar Bud Hurlbut train (originally from Santa's Village) is now running at the Santa Ana Zoo.

Early Amusement Parks Of Orange County said...

No problem Major glad to post on that one.Lawrence welk even drove the train around Don's Restaurant for the Grand Opening.That train has History with it.

Early Amusement Parks Of Orange County said...

That Train that is at Santa Ana zooz now is electric and started off as a Briggs and Strat eng Bud bought it back from Santa Village and then leased it to the zoo the zoo does not own tjat it just does a lease.

Jay Jennings said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kurt C said...


Hello Major, monkey cage Kurt here again, making another comment on a four year old post. Am I the only one commenting on your older blogs?
BOY, this takes me back. That train was a big part of my childhood, I LOVED that thing! I was only about 4 or 5 years old when Knott’s put up the fence around the park, so for the most part growing up my friends and I referred to the Lagoon area as “the free side”. It was kind of like an old fashioned town park. Mom would take us there every now and then. During my teen years I had a friend who worked at the Lagoon. Among other things, he piloted the Cordelia K and operated the old Dentzel Carousel. My girlfriend and I would visit him all the time. It was SO SAD when they paved the entire thing over.
Thanks for yet another joggin of my memories.

Major Pepperidge said...

Hi Kurt, I don't get a lot of comments on older posts, but it does happen once in a while. I'm glad to know that people are looking at all of that stuff that has been there for so long. My personal memories of Knott's are from after it began charging admission, but I still had loads of fun there. My mom could drop us off there for hours and we knew every corner of the place.

Kurt C said...

This stuff is pure gold! I’m sure more people are seeing it than you are able to know. I’m personally on a journey here; I think I’ve been on it for over a month now. I’ll periodically keep you posted as to my location on this blog and winding road. I just hope I’m able to make it all the way to the end. Your wittiness is fuelling my drive toward the finish line. Well, that and my love for D-land. (Oh, I guess I should say “starting line” as I am traveling backwards in time here)
PS: I like all the same cute girls as you. I also fell in love with the cute blond uniform model (lost children or something). Someday she will be my girlfriend.