Friday, October 16, 2009

Souvenir Friday - Dial Guides

It's friday, and it seemed like a good day to do a souvenir post. I hope you agree!

I dig Disneyland maps of all kinds. The big poster-size wall maps get lots of love, but there are many smaller examples too; the line-art maps found on the backs of Hills Bros. menus, the early and charmingly inaccurate maps found on metal TV trays and on a set of cut-out 45 rpm records, and the simplified maps found in a variety of gate handouts. To name but a few!

Today's "dial guides" are two of my favorite souvenirs! The concept is simple: a card stock map has holes punched in it at various points of interest. Turn the paper wheel, and a pink dot appears inside a hole on the front, and a corresponding description appears in a window on the back. Like I said, simple... but great! A souvenir that you could spend a long time playing with if you happened to be a Disneyland-obsessed kid. Know any?

This first one is copyrighted 1970 and 1972, so I can only assume that there was an earlier version that doesn't mention 1972 at all. That extreme pea soup green is an interesting choice (thank you, 1970's).

If we look at the back, we can see that this dial guide is technically a postcard as well. As an avid Disneyland postcard collector, I heartily approve. Notice that, for some reason, the Haunted Mansion is listed as a Frontierland attraction, leaving Pirates of the Caribbean all alone in New Orleans Square. Bear Country is also listed as Frontierland, though I guess some people considered it a new "land" for a while. Not me!

This next example is from 1983. Fantasyland has been redone, so goodbye Skull Rock and Pirate Ship, hello "Pinocchio's Daring Journey". "It's a Small World" is now candy-colored (yuck). Space Mountain is makin' the scene (as is "America Sings"), and the Mine Train has been replaced with Big Thunder.

This version has lost its postcard status, but there is a lot more colorful artwork, so I forgive it.


Chiana_Chat said...

My gosh. I would've so enjoyed these (shall I admit I still might and even enjoyed this look at them? Hmm...)

Disneyland was sort of held in an indian summer of its classic era in the '70s. Which amazes me because as a whole the '70s seems like the decadence of taste/culture went on. With every bright positive progress a few of the best qualities of the past were lost or rotted... pea soup green on that neat map of the park kinda strikes me as a gentle mini-symbol of "the best or times, worst of times" sort.

With the '83, there's a newness coming, although it'd be a seriously mixed bag after it really kicked in a few years down the road, when "good bye skull rock and Pirate ship" could be coupled with "and hello videopolis, Star cool franchise partnership Tours and toy/pooh corner." I was so out of that loop though... on that map I would've been interested in the Matterhorn, nawlinz square etc.

Bear Country seemed to be in vibe with the early 70's John Denver, back to country bent. Albeit a bit late, way under-developed and half-way (Hungry Bear Restaurant? Awesome but... this down home theme is for a Disneyland McDonalds?). I thought it was its own land though, it was on the maps wasn't it? By the time of Splash Mountain the theme had been long lost with the fading of that cultural phase. But then that area, like its main attraction, has continued to lack a strong, fully realized identity ever since. Seems to me it may be pro-green time for a return of the spirit of the land. Unless Disneyland is determined to be too late again.

Anyway enough cultural & other generalizing. Thanks for the souvs and chat space, Maj.

Jason Schultz said...

The first map must have been issued in 1973, as it has both The Walt Disney Story (opened 4/8/1973) and the Carousel of Progress (closed 9/9/1973). And I'd never run into "People-Mover" before!

Sereina Elwert said...

Those are really cool!

Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Awesome post, thanks!!! I have a "1974" version (link) that is almost identical to yours expect its "American Sings" now and the poor Pack Mules are gone for good. :-(

I've never seen that 1983 one! On the one hand its cool they updated the early '70's looks, but the "early '80's" look doesn't really fit the whole "Dial Guide" format, so it looks a little out of place.

Ps. Don't think we didn't notice the first dial guide is set to "Adventure Thru Inner Space" doing a little day dreaming Major?

Major Pepperidge said...

Chiana, thanks for the thoughtful comment (essay! ;-D). I'd like to believe that the spirit of those days from the early 70's could be recaptured, but.... how?

Progressland, thanks for the info. I guess it must be from '73 (why no 1973 copyright?).

Tim, I had forgotten that you'd posted a dial guide already, I should have known! Still, it's cool that it is a little bit different. And yes, I left that one set to ATIS on purpose!

Okie said...

So awesome. I have the second dial guide pictured above and absolutely love it. It's one of my favorite souveniers and I still have it hanging around...literally, it's up on the wall in my bedroom. The kids love looking at it and had fun using it to see how the park had changed between when I got it and when we went to DL as a fam.

TokyoMagic! said...

I love these! I have two of the green versions, one with Carousel of Progress and the other with America Sings, and also the yellow/gold version, but not sure of the years on any of them and that would require some serious digging through stuff. I just remember coming home from the park after aquiring my first one and playing with it over and over! I also remember laying on the floor with my brother and looking over our large souvenir wall maps before going to the park....and after.

Nancy said...

i love these! definitely prefer the 70s colors over the 80s. i want one!

thanks for sharing them :)

Anonymous said...

I have six in my collection. I have the 1970, 1972; 1974; 1975; and 1976 post card version and the 1979 and 1980 non-post card version. I'll have to keep my eye out for the 1983; I didn't know it existed.

Anonymous said...

You can make the first one!
i didnt even know it was a real dial guide, i just thought it was a papercraft