Monday, October 13, 2014

More "Greatest Hits" - Frontierland

Here is another selection of random (but "nicer than usual") images from GDB's past - this time we're in Frontierland.

I must have several dozen photos of the "Friendly Indian Village" (probably more than that), but this one (circa 1960) is different. Different is good! Our photographer was aboard the Columbia, and he found something to stand on that seems to have put him a good six feet higher than everyone else. Either that or he was 12 feet tall. The foreground elements of the rigging and the other guests adds a nice "you are there" quality to this bright, sunny photo. You can just see the Disneyland Railroad passing behind the Indian Village too. This picture was originally posted in 2008.

Notice our good friend, the giant tinfoil ball (to the right)! What could it actually be? I've noticed it in some other recently-acquired slides as well.

This is a neat (and unusual) view (originally posted in 2009) of one of the li'l yellow Mine Trains as it rounds the curve that surrounded the geysers and paint pots of the Rainbow Desert. Apparently this photo was taken from the Disneyland RR; notice the guy (with the hat) taking a photo of us! The photo is circa 1962.

Originally posted in 2009, this nice view of the Columbia sailing ship (circa 1958) is a beauty. I'd say it is "postcard worthy", which is almost literally true, since there are several vintage Disneyland postcards showing the Columbia from almost the same vantage point. The golden late-afternoon sun really adds a lot to the nostalgic feeling of this one.

See? Vintage postcard. I like the photo above better!


Nanook said...


I prefer to think of the "giant tinfoil ball" as Disney's version of The Rover, from The Prisoner TV series - this one being the 'floating white ball' used to "suggest" prisoners stay within The Village.

Thanks, Major, for these blasts from the past.

Anonymous said...

The postcard version of the Columbia shows the ship packed with guests and a minimum of 12 crew members in the rigging. Wow! I agree that the GDB photo is warmer in color, but its missing a key ingredient that the postcard version boasts...a glimpse of moose antler on the roof!

These are all keepers Major!

Bill in Denver

Alonzo P Hawk said...

As Phil Connors said in Groundhogs Day "Different is good" and I would have to agree.

The different angles on both one and two are welcome. Plus lots of people watching to do in picture two. The full blown babushka sighting,the camera guy with the nacho chip hat,the two marines.

Nice start to the work week, thanks Major.

Chuck said...

Nanook's explanation of the Giant Tinfoil Ball rings true to me. How else would they be able to get those natives to stay in the village, knowing that Disneyland was RIGHT THERE to be enjoyed by all?

I was going to mention the Marines on the Mine Train, but Alonzo P Hawk beat me to it. Curious that nobody's yet mentioned the whale spouting in the second car.

I agree that the first Columbia photo has a warmer feel to it, and I really like the slightly (okay, maybe seriously) incongruous glimpse of the castle to the extreme left. I think there are at least 18 crewmembers up in the Columbia's rigging in that postcard shot. Just one would be enough to send Cal-OSHA into a tizzy today.

I'm going to guess that the postcard photo was shot on June 14th, 1958, the day the Columbia was dedicated (curiously, the Columbia was dedicated on the ARMY's birthday). According to Dan Simmons, the ship was "crewed" that day by Sea Scouts out of the Win’ard Yacht Club in Redondo Beach who were costumed as seen in that photo (; noet that Daveland lists June 4th, 1958 as the dedication date). Wish I'd seen it like that.

In fact, I wish could remember seeing it with the sails unfurled at all. I can't recall seeing it on my first summer visit in '71 (I was two and a half), and the rest of our visits in the 70's were in the off-season, where the Columbia could reliably be seen at its berth in Fowler's Harbor. I didn't come back until '93, after the sails were eliminated for "Fantasmic!"

K. Martinez said...

The Mine Train photo would make a wonderful ViewMaster image. In a few more years, this POV wouldn't be possible for a guest to shoot due to the DLRR track re-alignment made to accommodate the IASW attraction.

The sky with the faint clouds (not a meteorologist to know the cloud types) behind the Columbia and golden glow overall is far more beautiful than the postcard version. Nice post today. Thanks, Major.

K. Martinez said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tom said...

Love that new angle on the Mine Train! You can see the service tunnel on the curve they just came around.

Melissa said...

The GTB is obviously an early prototype of Spaceship Earth. It took them many years to get the kinks worked out.

Second car of the Mine Train, BABUSHKA MONDAY! Let's break out the Stoli and celebrate!

Melissa said...

The GTB is obviously an early prototype of Spaceship Earth. It took them many years to get the kinks worked out.

Second car of the Mine Train, BABUSHKA MONDAY! Let's break out the Stoli and celebrate!

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, practically the only image from "The Prisoner" that I have retained (I haven't seen it since I was a very young child) is the Rover, which I thought was pretty scary at the time. Not sure a tinfoil ball would have quite the same effect.

Bill in Denver, yes, I noticed that the Columbia had quite a full crew in that picture! I should look at my "Jumbo" version of this card (at least I think there's a jumbo version), maybe we can get a better look.

Alonzo, Phil Connors also quoted French poetry, so he can't be trusted! "Nacho chip hat", ha ha.

Chuck, maybe the Indians stayed right there so that nobody would steal their tinfoil ball. Or their red stapler. I think I mentioned the Marines in my original post. As for the whale, it just goes to show how society has changed; nobody even notices whales anymore. I think there are MORE than 18 crew members in the rigging. OK, now I really have to look to see if I have a jumbo version of that card. If the picture really was taken on the day the Columbia was dedicated, I would expect Frontierland to look a lot more crowded. Maybe it was just the timing.

K. Martinez, I think those might be "cirrus" clouds! I'm not an expert on clouds, but I play one on TV.

Tom, yep, they could just back 'em up into the tunnel where they were nice and cozy.

HBG2 said...

It's an igloo for Running Deer's cousin Nanook, visiting from Alaska.

Major Pepperidge said...

HBG2, it must be made out of Eskimo Pie wrappers.