Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Sleeping Beauty Castle & Twain, 1957

Today we're going to look at 2 of the most-photographed Disneyland icons. You've seen them SO many times, I know. And there are many that I don't even bother scanning!

Yes, Sleeping Beauty Castle. What can I say about it that hasn't been said before? And yet I still like the photo, with the Surrey and the trees and the flowers and the "Be a Fireman" sign (I thought that sign was only seen in Town Square, but obviously I was wrong).

Daredevil Vesey Walker stands perilously close to the edge of the bow of the Mark Twain, while conducting the Disneyland Band. What if the pilot of the Twain slams on his brakes?? Vesey will be all wet. ;-)

Two cast members wait at the dock; I wonder if their hats had badges just for steamboat workers?


Nancy said...

these two images make me want to just sit under a Disneyland tree somewhere and relax....it certainly has plenty to choose from!

in fact, i think i will do a bit of bench hopping and try out one in every Land....

thanks for the nice pictures :-)

JG said...

Castle photo has a lot to recommend it:
Old preferred pastel color scheme;
Themed trashcan (Main Street),
"Be A Fireman" sign,
...and probably best, the slight quarter-angle viewpoint which highlights the "chapel" part of the castle, (above the battlements, but below the tower), to the right. This portion resembles the "apse" end of a gothic cathedral, with flying buttresses (it even faces east, as these should) and topped with a fussy gothic spire.

Always makes me think this is the King's private chapel. Closest thing to a church in Disneyland.

And the Mark Twain? Well, the whole idea is a work of genius. 'Nuff said.


TokyoMagic! said...

What was the "Be a fireman" sign all about? I think I remember seeing it in previous photos, but don't remember the details.

JG, I've noticed all the little architectural details that you've mentioned, but never thought "cathedral".....until now. I can see it! Are there supposed to be bells in that "fussy Gothic spire"? There is always the sound of bells ringing prior to Snow White singing at the wishing well and I think I've always assumed the bell sound was coming from that spire....pre-recorded of course.

SundayNight said...

I never get bored of vintage Disneyland pictures. Someday we will be able to put them all together into a gigantic virtual landscape that we will be able to move through.

I agree with JG, because we are slightly right we get to see some nice Sleeping Beauty Castle chapel details.

JG said...

@TM: "Be A Fireman" was the old style sign marking the queue for riding the Main Street Fire Truck. This was discontinued, but I don't know when.

Those spiny "crocketed" gothic spires were placed to highlite the crossing of the nave and transept, in Northern European Gothic, the towers with carillons were much larger and heavier and stood at the west front, usually in pairs, but often in Germany, there was only one.

The crocketed spire on the Disney Castle is in scale with the "cathedral" roof on which it sits. and so is much too small to hold a carillon (in scale).

See some examples here >> http://lookuparchitecture.com/historygothic.htm

The Disney Castle "nave" & crocketed spire very much resembles Notre Dame in Paris, scroll down the link to see it.

The overall concept of the Disneyland castle is based on Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria, built by Mad King Ludwig, who is reputed to have designed the deck of 52 playing cards. You can google that name for many great pictures of a beautiful building.

Thank You, @Sunday Night. Disneyland is a treasure trove of bits like this. I just walk around with my mouth open, admiring.


Major Pepperidge said...

Spoken like a true scholar of architecture, JG! I'm happy to say that I have visited Neuschwanstein; it was pretty cool (how's that for an understatement?).