Wednesday, October 26, 2016

More Disneyland Photos from Steve Stuart, 1958

It's time for another installment of photos from the personal archives of Steve Stuart, aka "Nanook"! This time we're in Adventureland.

Steve says: "Sitting near the JC exit, with the Congo Queen as backdrop, is (family friend) De De, my dad and moi. I don't know if houndstooth was all the rage back in 1958, but my dad was clearly sporting it here". 

I think this is a great family (and friend) portrait - as I said to Steve, I wish I had a picture of me and my dad from Disneyland that was as nice as this.

Steve continues: "I'm sure we're all familiar with one of the standard Jungle Cruise jokes, regaled by many a JC skipper referring to 'the backside of water'. Apparently this was my dad's attempt at topping that old standby with one of his own: 'the backside of heads'. I suppose he was really just trying to get a shot of De De and yours truly along with the python, but any time one can highlight "good grooming', well...". 

"And something only an audio geek would appreciate, was Disney's clever use of [what appears to be] a Cannon XLR-3-42, surface-mounting plug for the skipper's microphone jack, incorporated into the front-left canopy 'pole'. Even at Disneyland's inception, the attention to detail was rarely topped".

THANKS to Steve Stuart for sharing these photos! There are many more to come.


TokyoMagic! said...

Nanook, these are wonderful! We've seen your mom and now we get to see your dad. Very handsome! I like the "you are there" feeling of the second pic. And I think I see two water buffalo between De De's head and what I'm assuming is the holster for the skipper's gun. Thanks for sharing more of your family's pics with us!

Pegleg Pete said...

Thanks for sharing your pics, Nanook. It looks like it was a cold day at the park - coats in the jungle!

Chuck said...

Nanook, is that the edge of your mom's noggin on the left side of the frame?

It is interesting to see all of the heavy coats here in the jungle. Since this is LA, I'm guessing the temperature may have dipped into the upper 50s.

Seriously, folks who've never lived out there don't appreciate that it can get cold in the winter. Not Montana winter cold, of course, but sub-40 temps (that's approaching 0 for those of you who don't live in the US and Liberia) are uncomfortable for most of us without being bundled up. I remember riding the Matterhorn one November night when the temperature was in the mid-30s and it really felt like we were up in the mountains.

Camping in a tent at the Vacationland campground that night was an adventure all in itself. I woke up at about 2 to hear my wife whimpering in the sleeping bag next to me. When I asked her what was wrong, she said "I'm s-s-sooo c-c-cold!" Since she had the warmer, 20-degree bag, I was a bit confused and slipped out of my own sack to see what was the matter. She had been so tired after a full day at the Park that she had sacked out almost immediately after her head hit the pillow, completely forgetting to zip up the bag. I put a stocking cap on her head, zipped her up, and she was toasty warm and sawing logs again in about 10 minutes.

Thanks again for sharing, Nanook.

DrGoat said...

Your family had great style. Like your Dad's coat and tie. Couldn't get our father to wear a tie in Disneyland if his life depended on it.
He wore a tie every day at work so I get it. does look like his pistol. Can make out what could be a Colt insignia on the grip.
Nice pics, thanks!
PS We start wearing winter clothes when it hits the 50s here in Tucson.
Winter is cold in the desert.

Unknown said...

Lovely shots, Nanook. Thanks for sharing. Would your Mom have been the photographer in the first? Nice composition in every respect. And as always your ability to identify the minutiae of the mundane aspects is ever astounding, be they automotive or electronic or, well, everything else it seems. I have some shots of old college days; do you think you could identify some of the faces I've long ago forgotten? :)

Alonzo P Hawk said...

It's nice to see a family (partial) photo at the park that looks relaxed and not photobombed by a massive crowd. I've tried to take similar photos with my family on our most recent visits and there is no comparison to the tranquility of this.

Great memories. Thanks for sharing. It makes us all yearn for days past (next stop Willoughby).

Anonymous said...

Steve, thanks for these terrific pictures. A handsome and well-dressed family to be proud of.

Winter visits were rare for us, we usually went in the late summer due to the farm schedule. I recall one trip when the monorail was closed due to rain (monorail 01 had no operable glass, just openings), I think this was at the Thanksgiving break, but that was 50 years or more ago, can't be sure.

Weather at our recent visit at Christmas 2015 was quite nice, no rain, no coats needed. People in California are spoiled.

Major, thanks for hosting these nice little soiree's where we all share pictures. It's a lot of fun.


K. Martinez said...


These are great photos. Not only was your mother good looking, but your father too. Nice family portrait.

I love the second image because it was shot from the interior of the boat. So many times Jungle Cruise photos are taken showing the jungle river tableaus without evidence of the boat. This shot creates a you-are-there feeling. In fact, usually my favorite shots of the Jungle Cruise are like this. For me the Jungle Cruise boats themselves are a big part of the experience.

Thanks again for sharing your family photos. This was a series that I was really looking forward to and can't wait to see more of.

Anonymous said...

The clarity and freshness of these pictures is amazing and a testament to Nanook treasuring them.

In response to Dr. Goat, the pistols we used in the 70s were Smith and Wesson long barrel .38s. The real deal back then. The closing foreman was responsible for the collection and count to match the opening record. KS

Chuck said...

KS, was there any sort of barrel block to prevent use of live rounds?

Nanook said...

Dear all-

Again - thanks for your comments.

Yes, the "you are there" aspect of the second image adds greatly to the whole 'scene', and as Ken & TokyoMagic! pointed out - the boats, themselves, really are a big part of the experience, but somehow seem to receive the short shrift. The fact the engines are really just that, coupled with each boat's movement in the water - the slowing-down, stopping and "rapid acceleration" of the watercraft, can't be underestimated in adding excitement to each journey.

Although in spite of the fact the entire west coast of the "lower 48" experiences 'May & June gloom & doom', the clothing in these images seems to belie that part of the year. I'm beginning to think the "June, 1958" reference on the box of slides referred directly to our Visit to Santa's Village, and not this trip to Disneyland, which I would think occurred during a "colder time" of the year for So. Cal., but then again-?

@DrGoat & JG- We are certainly well-dressed in this visit to The Park - although hardly out of place with many guests back then. It all does seem a "bit much", but what has now become "the new normal" in most cases, seems to have come off the rails in terms of any sort of fashion sense and just plain common decency. I'd be the first person to vote for more "casually-appropriate" clothing; but then again - be careful what you wish for-!

Looking at the intense crowds which greet most visitors these times, it's hard to even fathom a time when, as Alonzo P. Hawk mentions, seeing a family photo "...that looks relaxed and not photobombed by a massive crowd", but it was certainly true back then. (Thanks for the Willoughby reference; I may have to watch "A Stop In Willoughby" tonight).

@ Pegleg Pete- "Coats in the jungle!" I know the Major could work-in a clever rejoinder worthy of that wonderful observation. Talk about an oxymoron-!

@ Chuck- I believe you must be correct that partial head we see off to the left in the second image is that of my mom's. And @ Patrick Devlin, undoubtedly it was my mom's 'hand' responsible for shooting the first image.

@KS- There is a 'freshness' to each image, in spite of they're being close to 60 years old-! (Some kudos go to The Major for "blessing" each one with his magic visual elixir, guaranteed to "cure all that ails 'ya-!")

@Patrick Devlin again- The downside of knowing the 'minutiae of the mundane' is often forgetting some of the other "important" things in everyday life, but I certainly have fun inserting that minutiae into these pages-!

@KS- And speaking of minutiae - but only the 'best kind" here, tho' - thanks for the pistol info.

And thanks to you too - Major.

DrGoat said...

Nanook, I think a one way to Willoughby sounds pretty good right about now.

Melissa said...

We had 2 inches of snow here this morning. Supposed to be back in the sixties on Saturday. It won't be long until those couple of months out of the Year I wish I was in California.

Melissa said...

We had 2 inches of snow here this morning. Supposed to be back in the sixties on Saturday. It won't be long until those couple of months out of the Year I wish I was in California.

Anonymous said... response to your, there was no barrel block. Our pistols were capable of firing live rounds. It was a different time and place back then. We never thought anything about it...and acted responsibly when it came to the guns. KS