Sunday, March 12, 2017

Castle Courtyard, July 1958

If you have looked at today's photos and are feeling a ferocious sense of déjà vu, don't worry! You have indeed seen similar photos before

The lady to the right of the trash can is my favorite, she has a real sense of style. Maybe she's a cool teacher or something. I always loved the old castle courtyard, because pre-1983, it was the only place where the surrounding buildings were more fully finished, in contrast to the flat façades of the old Fantasyland (which I also loved!). Just look at Merlin's Magic Shop, to our left. It's right out of a German Expressionist silent movie. "The Golem", maybe. 

And I know that a lot of people like today's more gaudily polychromatic park, but I look at this version of Sleeping Beauty Castle and think that, even though it is a fairy tale castle, it feels more "real", if that makes any sense at all.  


Nanook said...


Yes, that lady does indeed have a sense of style. Not only is she sporting a lovely 'bright' dress, but her earrings would easily be at-home in today's 'large is better' school of earring sizing. On the other hand, the gentleman walking in front of her has his own set of hair-challenged issues.

And most-certainly the 'polychromatic color scheme' now on display belongs only in a paint sample book, and certainly not at the Nation's premiere theme park. This version of the castle is both majestic and far more 'real' than the 'so bright it hurts your eyes' color "palette" now being "featured".

Thanks, Major.

Debbie V. said...

What is to the far left?
What does the reddish sign say?

I just LOVE the feeling these pictures evoke. Little places to look - hmm what's in there, what's that etc. I always felt I was inside Disneyland when I was here.

Unknown said...

The reddish signs says "Exit to Tomorrowland" and it certainly looks mire prominent than it does these days. I love those little side exits: they're sort of mysterious and cool.

Unknown said...

And is that a cool teacher? you bet! It's Mrs. Gregory, the one who always had Smith Bros. cough drops in her purse to be handed out at the least suggestion! And she let me clap the erasers after school! I'll say cool...

Debbie V. said...

Oh Patrick - thank you so much. I was hoping that was what it was - the "secret" way to Tomorrowland. I have commented on the one that leads to Frontierland a few times - but I always wondered if my memory was correct and there was one to Tomorrowland as well. Finally! Thank you Major for posting or reposting these pictures. As Patrick says these little doorways to other lands were part of the mystique of Disneyland for me. I

Steve DeGaetano said...

Yes, having a more-realistic color palette did indeed make the fantasy more "real." It made the fantasy better. Back then, it was easy to imagine the castle and courtyard being in a far-away European kingdom, while today they will never let you forget that you are in an amusement park in Anaheim, CA.

TokyoMagic! said...

I believe the "Exit to Tomorrowland" sign is still there today, but they took down the "Exit to Frontierland" sign. How long had those signs hung there? I think they should have left it alone....even if that one side exit does now lead to the Princess Fantasy Crapfest. I mean Fantasy Faire.

Nanook said...

Those "exit to..." signs have been there in Fantasyland since Day One, if you can believe it.

@ Patrick Devlin-
In 6th grade we had an electric eraser cleaner-! (Yes, I know). It was essentially a specialized chalkboard eraser-sized vacuum cleaner. SEE HERE.

Nanook said...

I should also add the signage that now simply reads "Exit to Tomorrowland", originally had more text. But I can't locate any images of it with enough resolution to decipher just exactly what those additional words are.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, little did that guy realize that in 50-some years, people would be remarking on his hair!!

Debbie V. I see that Patrick Devlin has already answered, so I’ll leave it to him. Glad you like these.

Patrick Devlin, “Exit to Tomorrowland” sounds like the title of a Prog Rock album!

Patrick Devlin II, my “cool teacher” was Mrs. Cole, my 2nd grade teacher. I had a crush on her at the ripe old age of 7!

Debbie V., I agree with you, those little shortcuts were a cool way to access parts of the park without having to take the longest way - save a little shoe leather!

Steve DeGaetano, reading various forums, I get the feeling that most guests just want Disneyland to be the most “Disney” it can be, and in their minds that means “bright and colorful”. I’m often astonished at the terrible ideas that are put forward by people who love the parks - how about an animatronic Walt Disney who will talk to you and answer your questions? Ugh.

TokyoMagic!, man, I don’t hear ANYTHING about that Fantasy Faire anymore. Do people still stand in line to meet a princess? Ever since “Frozen”, it’s been pretty quiet.

Nanook, wow, an electric eraser cleaner. That takes all the fun out of it! What kid didn’t want to send up clouds of chalk dust??

Nanook again, I didn’t know that the sign said any more than “Exit to Tomorrowland” - there must be old photos on one of the Disneyland photo blogs!