Friday, June 22, 2018

Tomorrowland '56

Welcome to Tomorrowland 1956! Be prepared to hit the deck if an Astro Jet gets too close to your crewcut. 

Some of you may remember the two boys in the foreground, Glum Gus and Stylin' Steve. They're posing in front of the wonderful Clock of the World with their mother (I forget if she has made an appearance on GDB before). Surrounding the clock (that was somehow not sponsored by Timex) are attraction posters (hooray) and the flags of all 48 States. For some reason mom has a kung-fu grip on Steve's arm - he probably has a tendency to run away.

Check out the boy (in his souvenir hat) to the left, trying to figure out how that crazy clock worked!

How about this neat shot looking up at the new Skyway as it heads to and fro with the big tower on Holiday Hill in the distance? There are plenty of olives and toothpicks on display, as well. The Autopia is to our right, and the Yacht Bar is to our left (as is the Astro Jets). If you look closely, in the center at the bottom is a diamond-shaped sign for the Tomorrowland Boats - the ill-fated "Phantom Boats" that we all know and love.


Nanook said...


1956 - when the future was still the future-! I remember well the cast of characters seen here, and that very 1950's pull-over shirt with contrasting yoke. And in spite of junior's relative young age, he's still fashion-forward with his rolled-up sleeves just waiting to hold a cigarette pack, or two-!

Thanks, Major.

K. Martinez said...

The second image is wonderful. I love the Disneyland Skyway's original Tomorrowland support tower with its white, yellow and blue sectional pieces. Great perspective of all the Skyway buckets too. Original Tomorrowland sure was cool looking. Thanks, Major.

Tom said...

I'm staring at that first shot thinking: the house of the future is still *in* the future. It's mind-blowing. There's just nothing there!

I love mom's expression. There's at least an attempt at a smile. Film was precious so shots weren't wasted, but even so this looks like the "just one more" photo.

JC Shannon said...

Ah, Tomorrowland in the salad days. The future was full of promise for these lucky boys. We were gonna have rockets to the Moon, really cool mass transportation, and how 'bout those very nifty light poles. I remember being mesmerized by all of it. All of it is changed now, but I will always have the memories and of course the cool photos. Thanks to Major P. for sharing these, and all the others.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, we’ll be seeing a bit more of this family in future posts - not necessarily at Disneyland!

K. Martinez, I do love those shots with the Skyway gondolas getting smaller and smaller in the distance. And I love how they painted the support tower - no point in trying to hide it, so why not make it part of the decor? Most guests probably did not give it a second look.

Tom, not only that, but the Matterhorn was years away, too. By 2019 it will have been with us for 60 years! Pretty amazing.

Jonathan, while I think I am partial to the 1967 “New Tomorrowland”, it is hard not to get excited about the original land. Part of the appeal might be the 50’s quality of it all!

Gnometrek said...

Do I spy ticket books in each of the boy's shirt pokets? Lucky! My dzd kept a vise like grip on the family tickets and doled them out with great scrutiny.

Matthew said...

Great photos today Major! I always wondered if water spilled out from under the clock and cascaded down the blue tile (it always looked to me that it would). This first photo really answers my question with a resounding, "No." There is no basin to catch the water at the base of the clock. Well that answers that.

I love dad's "draftsman" style denim hat in the lower right corner of the second photo. Looks like a busy day in Tomorrowland where the future was always bright!

Always you pal,
Amazon Belle

Anonymous said...

Nice clear shots today, Major.

Good to see the Yacht Bar in it's original location.

I should remember that clock, but I can't.

@Matthew, there were fountains on the facades of the show buildings just past the clock. A sign of the times for architecture of the era. I agree, the clock looks like it should be a fountain, if not of youth, at least of water. It's an odd design.

Cheers to all.


JC Shannon said...

Hi all. Does anyone know when the clock was removed?

Sunday Night said...

Pictures of early Tomorrowland are by far my favorite. So neat to see that the kids are allowed to carry their own ticket books - and doing it the approved way - in their shirt pockets! Also enjoyed seeing the little berm next to the Circarrama.

Nanook said...

@ JC Shannon-

Both the Clock 'o the World and the Avenue 'o Flags were given the heave-ho in September, 1966, as construction on the New Tomorrowland began.

Melissa said...

I couldn't help noticing the pair of ladies in the background - one souvenir paper hat and one red babushka. Throw in the serious little feller in the Tyrolean cheapeau and the men in caps, and it's Headwear Friday for everyone!

Unknown said...

A bit late to the game, but the clock actually WAS sponsored by Timex. There was a small and really basic plaque that read “World Time by Timex, July 17, 1955.” On the left of the picture, attached to the top of the blonde girl’s head, and below the kid in the black hat, you can just make out the side of the plaque at an angle.