Thursday, May 31, 2018

Disneyland Souvenir Guidebook, 1965 - Part 2

Dry your tears, homies, because here is part two of JG's scans of his 1965 Disneyland souvenir guidebook! See part one HERE.

OK, we're up to Fantasyland now. I love the creative, fun graphic designs of this guidebook; note that the "bowl" shape of the photo of Fantasyland echoes the rounded triangle shape of the entire park. Books from the "Walt years" always showed the man himself aboard a signature attraction from the relevant land, in this case one of the flying pirate ships from Peter Pan's Flight.

Wonderful photos are contained in diamond shapes, reminiscent of a harlequin's costume, or perhaps medieval heraldry.

The next 2-page spread has switched to a "banners and scrolls" motif. As a kid I was thrilled to see any interior views from the dark rides, so I'm sure the Captain Hook image would have been my favorite.

Or how about that beautiful shot featuring Storybook Land, Dumbo, the Carrousel, and some of the dark rides? Plus the neat "Alice" interior!

Next we change to a more rustic style, with carved and hewn wood. Walt has donned a feathered headdress. Wouldn't it have been fun to follow the photographer around as he directed the boss. "Say, Walt, what do you think about putting this crazy hat on?". The yellow tint of the aerial photo is supposed to look like an old piece of paper, I guess.

Pack Mules, Rainbow Caverns, Indian Dancers, Rainbow Ridge... wow, what a place. All displayed on what looks like a weathered stable door.

The perfect decor for any Old West theme would include a flintlock rifle, a powder horn (from a genuine bison), a hatchet, and a 25 foot tall totem pole. Love the shots of the beavers and the Mine Train from Nature's Wonderland, and the Strawhatters.

In a future post, this guidebook lists an impressive array of musicians (Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Harry James, etc). But Wally Boag is the only Disney employee (not counting Walt) who is credited with his real name. That seems like a big deal, don't you think?

Many thanks to JG. Stay tuned for part three!

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Main Street at Night, The Magic Kingdom

My friend Mr. X took some amazing night shots of Main Street at the Magic Kingdom during his first visit in November, 1971. Like this shot of the Main Street Bakery, sponsored by Sara Lee until 1985. I wonder if they piped the aroma of fresh-baked goods out into the street? Suddenly I feel the need for a pastry! 

I've noticed that most of the upstairs rooms have closed blinds, but that room above the Bakery has furnishings and a lamp, which makes it feel as if somebody lives up there.

Next is this very nice photo of the "House of Magic". After a quick search online, I found out that this shop was fondly remembered by many people who loved to drop in to buy a magic trick or two, or maybe one of those "practical jokes" from the S.S. Adams Co. (how about an ice cube with a fly in it?), and if they were lucky, maybe they could see a close-up magic trick performed by one of the CMs. Best of all, there were monster masks.

Sadly, the House of Magic closed on March 19th, 1995 - it's now the Main Street Athletic Club.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

The Riverfront

Disneyland's "Rivers of America" has undergone substantial changes over the years, so I love these sunny, colorful photos from the 60's.

This first one is from July, 1966. A family has paused to take in the scenery, including the wonderful Mark Twain at the dock. No wait, it is already underway! "The folks back home won't believe us", they say to each other, even though their folks live 12 minutes from Anaheim. The woman in front of the gentleman with the plaid shirt has the most amazing oblate spheroid of platinum blonde (?) hair! 

Next is this beauty (dated April 1969), similar to the first photo, but this one has one of the greatest sports stars in history. Old #40! I don't have to tell you who it is. Isn't it amazing how he looks like a regular Joe? I still remember his inspiring performance at the 1960 Olympics in Rome!

I love the bright hues in this one, as well as the Davy Crockett Explorer Canoe zipping past. This looks like a perfect Disneyland day.

Monday, May 28, 2018

Last Easter Parade Pix, April 1976

It's Easter on Memorial Day!

Just when we thought it would never end, it's time for the last photos of a special Easter parade from 1976. They weren't great, but there sure were a lot of 'em.

Hooray, there's the White Rabbit, who takes on seasonal work as the Easter Bunny; the pay is pretty good. I am jealous of his maroon coat and top hat. Meanwhile, Ms. Bunny is elegant in her old-fashioned dress.

Ladies in colorful dresses carry baskets full of fresh flowers while on the arms of characters (Pluto and Br'er Fox) who are on their best behavior.

Whoops, maybe they weren't on their best behavior after all! Pluto and Br'er Fox seem to be surrounded by a group of ladies who are giving them the business.

Colonel Hathi and his wife Helen (sure why not) have joined the festivities. Elephants love a parade.

What's going on here? Looks like a horseless carriage broke down en route and needed to be pushed along the entire path by no less than seven CMs. This is not a cost-effective mode of transportation.

When the Big Bad Wolf is around, you better believe that you'll need an Autopia CM nearby in case any huffing or puffing occurs. 

The Li'l Pigs don't seem very concerned that their old nemesis is so close; perhaps the BBW had become a strict vegan. Notice all of the hands reaching out to touch the piggy to the right!

And finally, you can't have an Easter parade without an Easter basket, can you? You'd think that there would be one or two Disney characters on board the basket, but we sure can't see them from this angle.

Whew! The parade is over. I can't say I'm too sad about it. Still, it was kind of fun.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Two From '76

Here are two somewhat "blah" photos (because it's Sunday!) from 1976.

If nothing else, this is a different view of the Submarine Lagoon - I'm not really sure where our photographer would have been standing for this oblique angle. Maybe it was shot from one of the Tomorrowland vehicles (such as the Peoplemover)? I'm also curious about the walkway at the bottom of the image, and where it led to.

And... here's a muddy, murky shot of the Matterhorn, which makes me miss the Skyway. Again.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Fairyland Caverns, Tennessee - August 1958

Today I'm going to share some 1958 slides from "Fairyland Caverns" in southern Tennessee (Chattanooga, that is). The "caverns" are a part of famous "Rock City", on Lookout Mountain. Rock City opened in 1932, with winding paths (named after fairy tale characters), interesting rock formations, and beautiful gardens. 

The caverns are actually man-made (built in between large rocks that happened to be very close together), added in 1947 to feature playful, black-lit dioramas featuring gnomes and familiar scenes from fairy tale classics.

Here's a photo of the entrance to Fairlyand Caverns, as seen in 1958. As a child, the idea of walking into that dark tunnel would have been scary! But once I had conquered my fears, I'm sure I would have loved this place.

Here's a scan of an early postcard...

... and here's a lovely photo (scrounged from the Internet) showing Lookout Mountain. I wonder how it got its name? Perhaps it was named after General Hezekiah Lookout. On a clear day, guests can supposedly see seven states from atop the mountain.

Here is one of the dioramas... the playful gnomes have built themselves a carnival (why, it's the "Carnival of the Gnomes"), complete with a Ferris Wheel, and a big top containing thrilling and mysterious side shows. Remember, all of the scenes were intended to be viewed by black light, so the flash ruins some of the magic.

There's Cinderella, running away from the prince (who has found her glass slipper). Cindy's coach has shrunk down to normal pumpkin size, and the horses have turned back into rats. Disgusting, filthy rats.

You know it, you love it, it's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Looks like her prince has just awakened her with his kiss, which was mighty neighborly of him. If you look closely through the dimness, you can see flitting birds and butterflies, as well as an assortment of woodland critters.

The Castle of the Gnomes. Fun fact: if you give a gnome a beer, he will grant you three wishes - as long as those wishes are that you want to be in the company of a drunken gnome.

Hansel and Gretel were greedy little children who ate gingerbread and candy instead of the healthy apples, string cheese, "ants on a log" (celery with peanut butter and raisins), and other snacks prepared by their mother. Also, they never flossed and rarely bathed. Frankly, I'm on the witch's side on this one.

I happened to find this slide (from 1963) showing a charming little snack shop, located right next to the "Lookout Mountain Museum" which I think is where the Mona Lisa can be seen. I might be wrong. The souvenir shop is still there today.

I hope you have enjoyed your visit to Rock City, Lookout Mountain, and Fairlyland Caverns!

Friday, May 25, 2018

Beautiful Tomorrowland, August 1967

I am always extra glad to be able to bring you nice photos from Tomorrowland, and today's examples are real beauties. As I have noted in earlier posts, these were probably taken in early July, if not sometime in June, even though the date-stamp is from August.

There's that distinctively non-futuristic Matterhorn mountain, with Hans (or is it Otto?) clinging near the top like a bug. To our left, the Monsanto Plastic Pad, soon to be relegated to Yesterland™ (as of December of '67). In the middle, behind the tree, you can just make out the small tent that I believe used to be part of the Monsanto exhibit, though it was converted to a souvenir stand. To our right... the Peoplemover.

For you fans of vintage people-watching, check this one out! The lady in the Chartruese outfit has just come from the future, directly from a Devo concert. Whip it! Two sailors (to our right) enjoy ice cream bars; they are probably on leave from Long Beach Naval Base! 

The Mary Blair mural on the south side of Tomorrowland seems to have been photographed far less than the one on the opposite side of the corridor, so it's nice to get this angle. Overhead, the still-riderless Peoplemover vehicles sit, apparently motionless until the ride debuted on July 2nd.

Here's a late-breaking addition: DrGoat asked what magazine the girl to the left was holding. I recognized the shape of Independence Hall at Knott's Berry Farm (plus you can juuuust read the word "Knott's" in red), and knew that this was an issue of "Vacationland" magazine. I wonder if she brought it with her from a nearby motel?

And while they used that photo on several consecutive issues of Vacationland, the photos are from the summer of 1967; so this is likely the front cover of the issue that the girl is carrying. Love that Herb Ryman artwork.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Three Blasts From the Past

I hope you love reruns of "Welcome Back Kotter", or "Star Trek", or "Friends", because I am presenting three "reruns" today. They're pretty good ones though, just like the episode where Kirk has to battle the horrible *Gorn!

Boy oh boy, there's lots going on in this view of the northermost edge of Fantasyland (circa 1958). I originally posted this one 10 years ago. In the distance is the little Fantasyland train station, complete with a departing train. There's the Midget Autopia (slightly left of center), and the striped tent of the Junior Autopia (slightly right of center).

This second photo was also originally posted in 2008; it is a 1966 view of the Plaza (sort of). The Plaza Inn is out of frame to our right, and the Monsanto House of the Future is back there, not long for this world. Just lift it up with a crane, put it on a flatbed truck, and move it to my 2000-acre ranch, won't you?

From 1960 we get this neat view of the sailing ship "Columbia" as it begins its cruise along the Rivers of America. Who knew that a sailing ship would churn the waters so much! The best part of this photo is the stately Plantation House in the distance. I would love to sit out on the veranda, eat a quiet lunch, and take in the scenery!

I hope you have enjoyed today's repeats.

*Spoiler alert: Kirk defeats the Gorn.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Disneyland Souvenir Guidebook, 1965 - Part 1

Today I have the pleasure of presenting PART ONE of a series of posts featuring scans of a 1965 Disneyland souvenir guidebook. One of the nicest guidebooks that was ever produced! It was a break from the designs and layouts of past editions, and it introduced a bold, fun, very 60's style, along with a ton of truly wonderful photos.

This guidebook was scanned entirely by longtime GDB reader "JG" (you know him from the comments); I know that it took a lot of his time, so I am very grateful that he wanted to share it with all of you. Due to the sheer number of pages in this particular book, I will be dividing it up into four posts.

First off, I thought I would include a scan of the front and back of the rare mailing envelope for these books (from my own collection). It's in several eye-popping shades of pink. Pre-psychedelic! My envelope shows a lot of handling wear, but I honestly don't remember ever seeing another one. 

And now, on to the cover! Multicolored lettering was in vogue at that time. And there's Walt - this would be the last guidebook to be produced in his lifetime. The painting of the castle and Mickey leading the Disneyland Band has a distinctive look - I would bet dollars to donuts that it was painted by illustrator Neil Boyle, who produced a lot of work for Disney around this time.

Here's one of Neil Boyle's album covers, with the vivid,  painterly, energetic style that he was famous for. On a personal note, Mr. Boyle was kind enough to sponsor me when I (fresh out of school) wanted to join the Society of Illustrators, even though my portfolio was not very inspiring!

It might be a little awkward to view a two-page spread one page at a time, but I'm sure you can handle it! Opening the cover, you are presented with a colorful, very simplified map of the park. Love the spot illustrations.

How about a nice forward from Walt? Or Marty Sklar, at any rate. It makes me smile either way.

Our visit begins (as they always do) with a trip down Main Street. Reading the text, one gets a sense that the theme of a turn-of-the-century midwestern town was very important.

I love how the layout resembles a wall covered with green wallpaper (probably flocked), covered with an assortment of framed photos, including the Omnibus, the Flower Market, the Train Station, the Plaza Pavillion, and a rare interior of the Carnation Ice Cream Parlor.

Next we see the Disneyland Band marching past, a Main Street crowded with various vehicles, and concept art to show the inside of the new Plaza Inn.

Along with a general view of Town Square, there is a painting (also by Neil Boyle, I believe) of Mr. Lincoln, a photo from the Grand Canyon Diorama, and the interior of the candle shop.

We're going to be exploring the park in a counter-clockwise direction, so once you've arrived at the hub, take a hard right into Tomorrowland. Enjoy that aerial view, along with that crazy "Atomic Googie" lettering. 

Switches, knobs, dials and buttons, along with reel-to-reel tape are all suitable graphic embellishments for our technological future. Look at that beautiful photo of the Monorail!

This page gives us a rare view inside the "20,000 Leagues" walk-thru... there's Captain Nemo's pipe organ. Flying Saucers. Astro Jets, and Submarines, wowee.

And we get another rare view inside the "Rocket to the Moon" attraction, along with climbers Hans and Otto, the House of the Future, and Bobsleds splashing down.

Pretty amazing, don't you think? And this is just part one! Many thanks to JG for his scanning efforts, and for sharing these jpegs with us. Stay tuned for part two...