Wednesday, July 29, 2020

1959 Gate Handouts

I've been scanning some old gate handouts from the 1950's and into the 1960's - some 14 of them. As a collector I love finding as many different examples as possible, but I realize that you, the GDB viewer, might not be quite as interested to see so many variations on a theme. But I believe that each of you has what it takes! 

First up is this rare yellow handout, from "Winter/Spring" 1959, which I believe means "late 1958 into 1959". This one has been folded, but I have not found a better example to replace it.

Among the advantages of taking a guided tour is the intriguing "scenic train ride in a 'private car' of the Santa Fe and Disneyland Railroad". The "Lilly Belle" passenger car wasn't hatched until 1976, so I wonder what they meant?

A "jumbo" 15-coupon ticket book was just $3.25 - the equivalent of about $37 today. The "$6.85 Value" was the equivalent of around $60, so the savings was significant.

"Plan a group outing at Disneyland"?? Let's do it! We'll all meet in Town Square by the flagpole at 10 A.M. Be there or be square!

Next is this undated example, in surprisingly good condition. It's hard finding these without folds, or especially without many tears, since the paper is rather thin. I think that these were handed to guests as they paid for parking, so presumably this person just placed the flyer on the seat and did not carry it into the park.

The use of ticket books was a stroke of genius; folks no longer had to purchase a ticket for each attraction, and the "A", "B", and "C" tickets probably encouraged folks to try out rides and attractions that they might have otherwise skipped.

"Fantasy In The Sky", every evening at 9 PM. Explosions make me cry. 

Stay tuned for more "IMPORTANT" gate handouts!


Nanook said...

Well, you've gotten me all excited about the great value these ticket books offer, and now I discover there are none for sale. What gives-?

One favorite feature of these brochures is the wonderful thumbnail images - including one for the Mickey Mouse Club Theater.

Thanks, Major.

TokyoMagic! said...

Nice ephemera, today! I wonder if the "private car" could have just been one of the regular passenger cars. Maybe when there was a Guided Tour group waiting to ride the train, they got one of the passenger cars all to themselves, and the "ordinary guests" weren't allowed to enter the car at that particular time?

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I know! I wish I could somehow order a big stack of 1958 ticket books. The adult books sell for a lot more on the collector’s market, FYI. But get some juniors too. Good eye on the Mickey Mouse Club Theater, you don’t often see that as a featured attraction.

TokyoMagic!, you’re probably right, the “private car” probably was just a regular passenger car. I don’t think guided tours had that many people, it would be cool to have a train car just for us. If an ordinary guest even looked at our car, we could make fists at them, or run our index fingers across our throats, and generally threaten them with violence.

Chuck said...

Shoot, Major - that's what I do on every trip to ensure I get a train car all to myself. Sixty percent of the time it works every time.

I wonder how long my last trespass notice is good for?

Stu29573 said...

I would have love to take the guided tour! Sign me up! Right now! Yay!!!
Alas, even at the completely reasonable prices, my family wouldn't have sprung for it. I guess I'll have to just slog around the Kingdom unaccompanied, like a normal peasant. Ah the humiliation of it all... Such is life. I wanna balloon.

DrGoat said...

Very cool Major. Just love looking at them. Eye candy in the best way.
Nanook, that Mickey Mouse Club theater just sticks right out. Really like all those thumbnails. They have that wonderful quality about them that just does it.
The only ticket book I have is one I saved from around 1969 or 70. Only one E Ticket left I'm afraid.
Also, what age constituted a junior? 10 through 13 Maybe? Don't remember.
Thanks Major. Great stuff from your collection.

Andrew said...

I like the romantic descriptions of the lands. When I was ten years old, I helped my aunt "plan" her family Disneyland trip. This is the text of one of the emails I sent her:


Needless to say, this was probably little to no help in navigating today's park, but she brought me back a Mickey Mouse watch and a Mr. Toad pin, so all's good.

P.S. Every email was not in ALL CAPS.

JC Shannon said...

Disneyland ephemera never disappoints. Artwork and cool narrative genius. Thanks for sharing them Major.

Nanook said...

@ Dr. Goat-
I think originally the age range was - CHILD: 'under 12'; JUNIOR: '12 thru 17'. Later, CHILD was defined as: '3 thru 11'.

"Lou and Sue" said...

Andrew, you wouldn’t make a very good tour guide, for two reasons:
1. You wouldn’t look good in a plaid skirt.
2. You YELL at the guests.

Am enjoying today’s post and laughs - thank you Major and all!

Anonymous said...

Well, the Junior Gorillas all had better get a seat in our private car, I'm just saying.


Thanks Major!

DrGoat said...

Thanks Nanook. 12 through 17 was quite a generous age span. Hooray for being a Junior.
Andrew, Mr. Toad pins are always welcome, plus a Mickey Mouse watch. You did good.

Major Pepperidge said...

Chuck, it used to be easier when you could bring a loaded firearm into the park, but the enhanced security checks have taken that option away!

Stu29573, yeah, as cool as a guided tour sounds, there is no way my dad would have paid for that. He would probably use a few choice four-letter words (being a Navy man) when he found out the price. You can have a balloon!

DrGoat, I’m glad you liked these - I realize that they aren’t super fascinating all by themselves, except for some details. And of course I like the variations from the different months and years, that is right up my alley! There is one kind of flyer from the mid-60s and into the 70s of which I have over 50 variations. Maybe I will subject you to those someday. Hey, your ticket book might be from the first bunch with Haunted Mansion tickets! Yesterland says that ages 12 thru 17 qualified as “Junior”.

Andrew, yes, they definitely used all their marketing savvy to lure costumers to Disneyland in those early days! I love the email to your aunt, pretty good for a mere ten years old. And you even got some good loot out of it! I like all-caps emails because I sound like the Incredible Hulk.

Jonathan, I may have to do the other similar brochures in more of a “collage” style, to keep you guys from getting too bored.

Nanook, you did more research than I did!

Lou and Sue, “Does this skirt make my butt look big?”. I’ll bet some tour guides had to really “project” on a busy, noisy day, especially if they had a big group. They’d be competing with carousel music, ride music, train whistles… all sorts of things.

JG, absolutely! That would be a condition of all guided tours. They’d even name the private car “the gorilla car”.

DrGoat, as far as I can recall, nowadays kids under 3 can get in for free, and then from 3 to 9 they can get “child” tickets. Once they turn 10, they are adults as far as Disney is concerned!

Nanook said...

... they definitely used all their marketing savvy to lure costumers to Disneyland... Ahhh, the joys of spellcheck (or not). I think Disneyland lured-in those 'costumers' by promising each one of them a costumed character 'head' of their choice.

"Lou and Sue" said...

I'm finally on lunch break and took more time to read this entire post. Major, I JUST NOW read your comment about meeting at 10:00 a.m. in Town Square by the flagpole!!! It's almost 11:00 a.m. there!! I'll look for your group now - I want to join you! Are you all wearing matching hats or something???

Chuck said...

Sue, matching underwear. Don't ask - one of Nanook's costumer pals had the idea.

"Lou and Sue" said...


Melissa said...

Variations on a theme is totally my jam, especially when it involves a Festival of Awesome Line Art.

“that's what I do on every trip to ensure I get a train car all to myself.” I find a couple fortissimo choruses of “It’s a Small World” does the trick.

If I ever win the lottery, planning s group outing to Disneyland with the Gorilla Scouts is at the top of my wish list.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I can’t blame spellcheck, that was my own bad typing!

Lou and Sue, we all wore hats with pink ostrich feathers. Don’t worry, we’ll do another meet-up!

Chuck, leopard-pattern!

Lou and Sue, some people just don’t appreciate high fashion.

Melissa, one of my early jobs involved drawing line art for company proposals, I still have some of the artwork, drawn on plastic film with a Rapidograph pen. No computers yet (they were around, but it was early). I can’t decide if singing “It’s a Small World” would scare people away at Disneyland, or if you would attract the most hard-core fans! I last bought a lottery ticket in April, and still haven’t looked to see if it won. Because I can guarantee that it didn’t.

"Lou and Sue" said...

In the 2nd scan, the brochure states:
If you are "seeing" Disneyland for the first time..."
"seeing" - as opposed to what?!

If I ever win the lottery, planning s group outing to Disneyland with the Gorilla Scouts is at the top of my wish list.
Melissa, that would be the MOST FUN trip ever!

Thanks, Major, for the fun day!

Omnispace said...

Major, It's interesting that these flyers don't mention the individual A-D tickets (for early 1959). I remember some Disneyland literature would explain how many of each ticket one would get in the booklet.

Also strange to me: seeing an unused Disneyland ticket booklet that still has the admission stub still attached. I guess one would only see it between the ticket booths and the gate.

Best TV skit ever: Jack Benny trying to talk Walt Disney into giving him free tickets.


Intact and unused Disneyland tickets and ticket books are technically not rare .... but they are expensive! In the mid 90’s when Disneyland began moving around old offices and clearing out old storage areas around the park , TONS AND TONS of old unused tickets (as well as fan cards , postcards and press photos were discovered stuffed in ever corner of the mansard roof section Main Street City Hall. For several decades all obsolete ticket media and some publicity was being stored away and forgotten up in the “attack” the Disney archives pretty much completed its collection. Many higher up imagineer’s got pretty complete collections too. Some was sold through EBAY’s Disney Auctioniers , and done went to the MICKEY’S ATTIC stores at Disney’s Official Disneyanna Conventions ( the forerunner of D23) it was dumbfounding seeing boxes of Tiki Room Comp tickets, press preview tickets for the opening of New Orleans Square and The Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland! A-E ticket books were as plentiful as beach sand. These were all first discovered when Disneyland needed to find storage space for crates of miss printed Disneyland 40 years of adventure trading cards.

A similar trove of rolls of individual Disneyland ticket stubs in a storage area where the arcade games and other mechanical coin operated things had been repaired were also found. Selections of these were sent to the archives , but for some reason cash control had the majority of those ticket rolls destroyed.

The big City Hall ticket Stash was kinda known to be only sample tickets with the punches in them , but there were tons and tons of unused and canceled ticket media found.

Melissa said...

”Best TV skit ever: Jack Benny trying to talk Walt Disney into giving him free tickets.”

That’s one of my all-time favorites! You can just see how much fun both Walt and Jack are having.

Major Pepperidge said...

Lou and Sue, you should use ALL nine of your senses! I often have silly dreams of what I could do if I had tens of millions of dollars, it’s fun.

Omnispace, you make a good point, I wonder why they didn’t mention the A-D tickets? Clearly they’d worked up a system that seemed to please customers. There are definitely other brochures and flyers that are very specific about how many of each ticket you got. I’ve seen that Jack Benny sketch, it’s great!

Mike Cozart, oh man, just thinking about stacks and stacks of old ticket books and “special event” tickets makes my heart beat a little faster. The opening of New Orleans Square and the Mine Train Through Nature’s Wonderland, yikes! I sure wish I’d been able to have my pick of what was in those large stashes. I did manage to acquire some unused ticket books, including some that were from what I assume was one of the stashes you mentioned, though by the time I saw what was left, it had been very picked over. Still, I’m happy to have what I have! Very interesting info, thank you.

Melissa, I still like to listen to old Jack Benny radio programs now and then, particularly the ones from the WWII era.