Sunday, September 20, 2015

The Golden Horseshoe, 1956

Let's start with this neat 1956 view of Frontierland, as seen from the top deck of the Mark Twain. It looks like we are just pulling away from the dock, all those people down below are just going to have to wait. I see a fire hydrant down there among them (which number is that one, Amazon Belle?). In the lower left is the roof of the Ice House, used as a cast member break room. I love these earlier shots of Frontierland, when it had grassy areas and shady benches, for a much quainter feel. 

In the dead center of the photo is the Golden Horseshoe (with two ladders going to the roof)

This next shot was very dark, and somewhat faded, and my restoration attempts resulted in this slightly odd looking view. Still, it's neat to see such an early interior! I have a vague memory of somebody asking about some paintings that were on the walls of the G.H., I sure wish I could remember exactly what they wanted to know.


Nanook said...


That first image is a beauty. "Quaint", indeed: Please keep off the grass.

Thanks, Major.

TokyoMagic! said...

I'm guessing that tall palm in the distance is the Dominguez Palm. Can someone tell me if the Dominguez palm was moved to that location or was that where the Dominguez home originally stood?

K. Martinez said...

Pendleton! One of my favorite shops at Disneyland. Wonder what the two ladders are for on the façade of the Golden Horseshoe?

Not sure what's odd looking about the second image. If you didn't bring it up, I wouldn't given it a thought. What's odd about it?

Always good to see "civilized" Frontierland. Thanks, Major.

TokyoMagic!, According to and the Domginguez Palm was moved to its current location in Adventureland from the future parking lot when construction on Disneyland began.

I found no other sites confirming this.

Steve DeGaetano said...

Judging by the angles, I'm guessing the Twain is pulling *into* the dock, not away from it. Really neat photos.

Nanook said...

In The "E" Ticket interview of Ron Dominguez, there's plenty of talk about both the Dominguez and Callens houses being moved east down (what used to be) Cerritos Ave. to become the combined structure housing the Disneyland Administrative Offices - remaining there until 1966. And there is talk about saving the "Dominguez Palm", but no mention of moving that infamous date palm tree. That absence alone isn't enough to dispute the tree ever moved, and there are plenty of other references hither and yon which do talk about the tree being moved, but, I do have to wonder.

Chuck said...

Nanook - was that the same issue that has the extensive Nature's Wonderland write-up?

Nanook said...

@ Chuck-

It was Issue #43, Fall 2005, and featured an article on Frontierland's Pack Mules Thru Nature's Wonderland - so you may be correct. (I'm away from home, and haven't the issue at hand to verify).

It certainly contained plenty of images from Nature's Wonderland.

TokyoMagic! said...

Thanks, Ken and Nanook! I thought the Dominguez house remained standing behind Tomorrowland until the construction of Space Mountain?

Nanook said...

You would'a thunk it. But, Ron Dominguez says 1966.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I think that the quaintness you refer to is a large part of what we find so appealing about early Disneyland.

TokyoMagic!, isn’t there an “E-Ticket” magazine with a whole article about the Dominguez palm? I wish I had mine handy, but I don’t.

K. Martinez, every once in a while I will see a Pendleton shirt with a Disneyland tag on ebay, but so far they have all been too small for my tall frame. But it would be so cool to find one that fits! The second image has all kinds of weird blue-green fringing around the edges, and the colors look weird to me. Maybe I am “too close” to it? Also… Mentalfloss did a writeup on the Dominguez palm?!?

Steve DeGaetano, really? It sure looks like it is pulling away to me, but I certainly could be wrong.

Nanook, hey, there WAS an E-Ticket magazine article! It sounds like it doesn’t answer all of TokyoMagic’s questions, much to my surprise.

Chuck - HEY, IT’S CHUCK! Good to hear from you! Hope you are recovering nicely.

Nanook, man, do I miss that magazine. So great. I remember resisting the urge to just read the thing from cover to cover immediately - I wanted to make the enjoyment last as long as possible.

TokyoMagic!, those are just lies propagated by the secret world government.

Nanook, if anybody would know, it would be him, I suppose.

Steve DeGaetano said...

Major, the dock is in front of us; we are approaching it. Hence the view. If we were leaving, it would be behind us. On the right.

Major Pepperidge said...

Steve DeGaetano, I must be dyslexic, because (to nobody's surprise) you are correct. I had the whole thing backwards in my brain!

TokyoMagic! said...

Nanook, I wonder if 1966 was a typo and it was 1976? I thought there was a Disney News Magazine that had a small mention about the tearing down of the "old" administration building to make way for Space Mt. I seem to remember a photo too. I'm going to go look for that issue!

Anonymous said...

Having been a CM between 1969-1978...and seeing Space Mountain arise from the ground, I cannot recall the Dominguez house...or the old Admin Building being in existence. I vote for 1966 being its demise.


Anonymous said...

Hooray, Chuck is back. Hope you are back to normal soon!

For Tokyo.

1. Yes that is the Dominguez palm in the picture.

2. This is the first I've heard that the Palm was moved. My understanding has always been that the present location is the original and only location. I can't confirm this or cite any sources. Also have heard that the Indiana Jones queue was redesigned to avoid destroying the tree when it was realized that the tree was that old and original to the site. Initial queue design called for it to be cut down. Can't confirm or cite anything on that either.

3. It is possible to move trees that big, esp. palms, so it can't be ruled out, I guess.

Daveland has some pics of backstage Tomorrowland with the old house, which was moved to that location. Perhaps the photo dates could bracket the removal.

Cheers Major. Fun stuff.


Matthew said...

Holy smokes I was called out to come up with the number of that fire hydrant. Before I answer that question let me add my thoughts to the Dominguez Palm discussion. When I was trained on the Jungle Cruise we were told about the history of this specific palm tree (Thank you Trevor Finney for being such a wonderful trainer). Later when I became a trainer, I continued to share the story of the Dominguez palm with my trainees. Here is what Morgan "Bill" Evans, the horticulturalist who oversaw Disneyland's original landscaping, tells the tree's story in Walt Disney Disneyland: World of Flowers, a 1965 book that's long been out of print:

Planted in 1896 by an early rancher, it was a stalwart and revered resident of his front lawn, admired by three generations of children and adults. One member of the family was married beneath it. When the owner of the land sold his acreage to Walt Disney in 1954, he requested that this venerable palm be preserved. Walt was more than happy to oblige, but since the tree stood in the middle of Section C of the projected parking lot, he ordered that it be carefully "balled," lifted tenderly from its old home and trundled, all 15 tons of it, to Adventureland.

Now about that fire hydrant number....