Friday, February 19, 2016
Photos from 1955 are pretty scarce, since the park was only open for the latter half of that year... I don't have very many! Today's are from November of that year; there is something special about them, knowing that the legendary opening ceremonies had only been four months earlier. Walt still strolled the grounds regularly, looking for ways to improve his newest endeavor, from picking up trash to rejiggering pathways to riding attractions in order to spot problems.
This first photo is a beautiful shot of the Mark Twain in the afternoon, probably taken from the Disneyland Railroad at the northwest corner of the park looking slightly southeast. Unless I'm wrong! But you can see the TWA Moonliner in the distance, as well as some spires of Sleeping Beauty Castle. Tom Sawyer Island would not be open for months, though this end was never open to the public.
This next one was taken from the dock as the Twain heads back to civilization. In the foreground is a character I don't believe I have seen before... a gambler, by the looks of him! Perhaps he could only be found on the riverboat landing in those early months? He pops up in one or two other photos from this batch (because, as usual, the photographer took more photos of the Twain than anything else). Note the Stagecoach just beyond the gambler's left ear.