Monday, March 20, 2023

Fantasyland Pix, October 1967

I have a pair of pretty good Fantasyland pix for you, circa October, 1967. We'll start with this unusual angle (I don't think I have another photo like it) looking toward the corner of Sleeping Beauty Castle where the Alice in Wonderland attraction is housed. Maybe it was down for maintenance, because there is not a soul to be seen, and no snooty caterpillar vehicles are winding their way along the tracks. Plus there's a man in white painter's coveralls next to the giant mushroom, he seems to be doing something very important.  It's pretty hard to miss that fire hydrant in the lower right - which I guess is the point.

And here's a pretty view of It's a Small World; for all of Mary Blair's facility with color, she wanted the fa├žade to be white, and we can see why; it just gleams. Attendance was low on this day, you could practically walk on to this ride! 

Sunday, March 19, 2023

Snoozer Sunday

You pretty much know what you're gonna get on a Sunday, or you should by now if you've been paying attention! I'll go through my scans and pick out a few that rate a 3 out of 10, or maybe a 4 if things are good. You have been warned.

Let's start with this not-good photo of the nuclear submarine (from November, 1974), "George Washington". I'll bet George wishes he had one of these when he crossed the Potomac (which he did to retrieve that silver dollar that he threw years before). I dunno, there's not much to say about this one, it's dark and murky and frankly I'm ashamed that I've shared it with you today.

Next, from "sometime in the 1960s" comes this Skyway view of part of the Matterhorn; it's a little bit interesting due to the angle, I like the waterfall, and the winding tracks, and the way you can see how the conifers get smaller as the altitude increases. BUT... it's a little out of focus, so that issue lowers it by 3 points.

Saturday, March 18, 2023

A Double Birthday Celebration

Today is Saturday (I know all of the days of the week!), and in general today would be an "Anything Goes Saturday". But this particular Saturday happens to be the big birthday day for TWO Junior Gorillas - Mike Cozart and Zach . We can't let that go by without comment!

Sue found this fun photo of a vintage birthday cake (with Smurftastic plates and napkins) for Mikey. Sorry we couldn't find a photo with a cake with the name Zach on it! I hope both of you have wonderful clown-free days.

Sue B. (and her dad, photographer Lou Perry) to the rescue, with a new batch of scans from October, 1981. It's a BIG batch too, and there are some exceptionally nice shots in the mix. Including today's beautiful pictures of Main Street. CHECK 'EM OUT.

It looks like Lou was standing more or less in front of the Carnation Ice Cream and Tattoo Parlor, looking across the street toward Main Street Cinema, which was still showing silent classics and not Mickey Mouse films exclusively (though "Steamboat Willie" was frequently on the bill). To the left of that is "Rings & Things" ("I'd like three rings, and half a dozen things"). and then the Market House... we can see "Sun Giant" listed as one of the Lessees (they were there along with Del Monte). Imagine visiting Main Street on a beautiful October day and finding it this quiet!

Hmmm, well maybe this blocked off corner was in front of the Ice Cream Parlor. Because the angle seems about right as we look directly at the Market House. Notice that the Flower Market is now on East Center Street. 

I don't know why it surprises me to see that the Hallmark store was still going strong in 1981; But they were there for 25 years, finally ending their lease in 1985. 

And because Sue knows that Mike (and probably Zach as well) loves Disneyland attraction posters, she included this incredible beauty, from October 31, 1963. Whoo-eee! 

Happy Birthday to Mike and Zach, and thanks so much to Sue B. and Lou Perry!

I still have family in town, but I should be free by tomorrow!

Friday, March 17, 2023

Two Beauties From the 1950s

HAPPY SAINT PATRICK'S DAY! I hope you are wearing something green. As usual, our friend Sue has provided us with a fun photo from her personal collection (but not taken by her dad), featuring some people wearing what I can only assume is authentic Irish costumes. The man on the right probably just won the gold in the Olympics, what an accomplishment. The lady is holding paper hats, I can see part of the word "Erin", so they must be a tribute to "Happy Days" actress Erin Moran. THANKS SUE!

Like the title says, I have two beauties for you today, classic '50s views of a bustling, vibrant Disneyland.

Let's start with this great look at Fantasyland as seen from the deck of the Chicken of the Sea Pirate Ship. The Pirate Ship looked great from the ground, but wow, what a view you'd get if you took the time to go aboard. There's that cute little ticket & information booth, the Mad Tea Party, the Carrousel, and even a tiny glimpse of the eucalyptus trees in the distance that worked as a wind break for the orchards near the park.

It's always fun to zoom in on people down below. They look like ants! Ants wearing 50s fashions. 

I wonder if the two girls to the right just got tickets at the little booth? They are either headed toward that couple who may be their parents, or they are going to enjoy a few moments in the air conditioned Mickey Mouse Club Theater.

It was a busy day, but gosh, it looks like it would have been a wonderful time to be there; a certain amount of guests add a sense of energy and movement to the place.

Next is this awesome view of the original Tomorrowland, as seen from a Skyway gondola. The old Astro Jets are to our left, and the Flight Circle is just beyond that. The building past that is where the Crane Bathroom of Tomorrow would be, maybe Grant McCormick's mom was a hostess in there this very day. I believe that the circular building with the slightly conical roof is where the "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea" exhibit was located.

Zooming in, we can see a Wen-Mac wind sock flying above the Flight Circle. But I only have eyes for the forbidden views of the backstage area, including the Dominguez house (the original Administration Building), and the large warehouse-like industrial sheds that housed the Main Street shops. I'm not sure what that smaller light blue building is that's between them, please chime in if you know.

NOTE: I have family coming into town today, and they'll be here for a few days. There's a chance I might not be able to check in until Sunday. You know how needy people can be! But I will definitely read the comments each evening.

Thursday, March 16, 2023

Cute in Tomorrowland, March 1962

It's time to visit Ginny again, with only one photo this time - there she is, at a Kodak Picture Spot with the Sub Lagoon behind her. She's actually wearing her hat, so it was possible! Did her hairdo survive? Who knows! 

She is holding two items in her hands - a 1962 souvenir guidebook, and a rather neat "Coming Attractions" brochure that is one of my favorite pieces of Disneyland ephemera.

I truly thought that I'd already shared scans of this item on GDB, but apparently it was all a dream (I also didn't study for the big test!). So here we go:

This brochure is laid out in an unusual way - it's really only two pieces of paper, but staggered in a way that... well, it's easier to just show you. 

Here it is in its unopened state, with a Marc Davis drawing of pachyderms in the Sacred Elephant Pool. Each colored strip (and text) indicates another page and hints about what's featured.

Say, did you know that Disneyland will never be completed? Walt was spending $7 million dollars to "plus" his park, including the aforementioned Elephant Bathing Pool, and the "Stouffer's In Disneyland" restaurants, which included what would become the Enchanted Tiki Room. I love the attempt at making the construction a feature and not a bug! Be a "sidewalk superintendent". Do I get a badge and a gun?

Let's flip the page to learn about "A Brand New Adventureland Area", that included the Swiss Family Treehouse, the Tahitian Terrace, the new "Safari Shooting Gallery", and the fabulous "Bird Room" - still a restaurant ("by reservation only") at that point.

And finally - "1963 New Orleans Square and the Haunted Mansion". The text mentions the "Blue Bayou Mart" (apparently NOT a restaurant at this point?), and the "Thieves Market", which would of course eventually evolved into "Pirates of the Caribbean". So exciting, I can't wait to visit the Haunted Mansion in 1963! I wonder if this was the first time the public saw the now-iconic Sam McKim artwork (on the left) - based on a Ken Anderson sketch?

I hope Ginny saved her brochure, maybe I own the very one she was holding!

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

TV Special at Disneyland, 1979

Here's a fun series of photos (courtesy of the Mysterious Benefactor) from 1979. As usual, they are from Frontierland. The interesting thing about these is that some sort of TV special is in the process of being shot, right in the middle of a busy Disneyland. 

Let's follow along, maybe we'll see somebody famous!

Following, following....

By gum, it's Annette Funicello! Arguably the most beloved of the original Mouseketeers, not to mention the star of many classic beach party movies. She's talking to a pigtailed young girl, probably explaining the history of Disneyland, or maybe the Mark Twain, which they are about to board.

It's kind of amazing how informal this shoot seems to be; if you happened to be standing in the right spot at the right time, you might have wound up on the program with Annette.

Looking on Google and IMDB, I could find no record of Ms. Funicello appearing in a Disneyland special in 1979 - part of me was hoping that whatever this show was might be on YouTube. No such luck. Maybe YOU can figure it out!

Many thanks to the Mysterious Benefactor!

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Mickey and Kids, November 1966

If you have kids, and you take them to Disneyland, and you happen to find Mickey Mouse standing around with nothing to do, you might as well have the kids pose for a picture with Mr. Mouse. The little girl looks adorable, and the boy is ready for a flood; it's always wise to be prepared. Is he holding his glasses in his hand? "Take off your glasses, Joey, we don't want you to look like a nebbish!". Hey, I'M a nebbish. 

Might as well take another one, and in fact this one is a little better. Fewer people nearby, and sis's tongue isn't sticking out (something she does to sense the heat of potential prey nearby).  

Monday, March 13, 2023

Storybook Land Canals, November 1974

Good old Storybook Land, a classic Fantasyland ride if ever there was one. I have a trio of scans for you from this venerable attraction.

This first one might be my favorite, there's something about emerging from a darkened tunnel into a world of miniature fairy tale and fantasy scenes. Is this first one the view as you emerge from Monstro's... er... "tunnel"? Looking at a current video, I can say "yes". Immaculate little gardens, and tidy stone homes with slate roofs and multiple chimneys put us in the mood. What is that strange alien creature looming up above the trees?!

There's Cinderella's "dream castle" (as it is referred to on an old postcard). I build all of my castles atop rocky promontories to keep the peasants away. 

Geppetto's Village always looks great, but the late-afternoon sunlight makes it a little spooky as well, as if ghosts and undead things will wander the cobblestone streets when the clock strikes midnight. Lock your tiny doors!

Sunday, March 12, 2023


It's SNOOZER TIME! Maybe if I shout it, it will seem like more fun. This first scan is from March 1962, and shows the most charismatic dead settler of all time. You can't really tell but he's taking a break from being dead, and is merely resting. As most of us know, he set his cabin aflame while roasting marshmallows. When will he ever learn?

Next is this snooze-tastic view of the Columbia (from July 1967) as it rounded the end of Tom Sawyer Island. It's not a bad photo. It's not a good photo. It's just there.

Saturday, March 11, 2023

Roadside USA

I picked two random "Roadside USA" scans for you today, hopefully they will be fun!

First up: this giant wheel of cheese - The Cheese House (scan from August, 1971). Kind of eye-catching, I'd say. And the giant mouse on the roof is the *chef's kiss*. At first I did a little research and thought that this example of "programmatic architecture" was in Meredith, New Hampshire. BUT... it turns out that there was a chain of 18 Cheese Houses in the New England area. Well, dang!

Here's a Cheese House postcard from a store in Moody, Maine. One online article warned that postcards can't be used as any sort of guide, as they often used the same photos regardless of the location. D'OH.

Another postcard, supposedly from Arlington, Vermont. I don't trust you anymore, Cheese House.

Next is this scan from a slide date-stamped "January, 1960". There are some old houses, and some patriotic bunting, but what's the deal? Where am I? Are you my mother?

Zooming in to that sign in the background, we can see that it is the "Lincoln Inn Cafe". Home cooked food! So it wasn't a big leap to assume that the white clapboard house next door had something to do with our 16th  President, Abraham Lincoln. Maybe you've heard of him? 

Meanwhile, I wonder if the cafe served Abe's favorites, such as Beefaroni, or a tuna sandwich with potato chips and a pudding cup?

Why, it's the Lincoln Museum, in Springfield, Illinois! Here's a vintage postcard. I tried to find a contemporary view of this building on Google Maps, but had no luck. In 2004, the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum was opened in Springfield, it's massive. You can find the home that Abe lived in during his time in Springfield, but it is not the building pictured above. Maybe this was torn down? Seems hard to believe.