Saturday, June 30, 2018

Ella Goes To Hollywood, 1962 - Part 3

By popular demand, I proudly present part three of "Ella Goes to Hollywood". Maybe you read about this series in LIFE magazine?

I'll bet that a lot of folks from out of town asked to see the Brown Derby restaurant - for a time it was where movie stars gathered for Cobb salad and chiffon pie. There were three "Derby" eateries, but this is the one near Hollywood and Vine. Notice that Ella is standing on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Some of the folks who have stars at that location (1628 Vine Street) are Charlton Heston, William Powell, Donna Reed, and Frank Sinatra.

Here's a vintage color photo, scrounged from the interwebs.

Next we see Ella at the old NBC studio ("Radio City West"), located at the corner of Sunset Boulevard and Vine Street. This streamlined art deco studio opened in 1938, and was used for both radio and television production. 

Here's a beautiful vintage postcard image, looking north on Vine Street with NBC to our right. Wallich's Music City (to the left) was another landmark. My mom can still remember their commercial jingle all these years later! Notice that ABC Studio was just up Vine. CBS Studio (not in the photo) was a few blocks east on Sunset.

Another photo from NBC...

And another beautiful color photo (again, scrounged from the 'web)! 

By 1955, NBC had opened "Color City", their new television studio in Burbank. Just two years after these photos were taken, Radio City West was demolished; a bank now stands on that spot.

My goodness, there appears to be a giant man in the distance!

Whew! I was afraid it was the Amazing Colossal Man, but instead it's just a billboard advertising Lawrence Welk, performing at the historic Palladium theater. Wunnerful! 

Here's a nice color image from a vintage postcard. Judging from the motion blur, it looks like Mr. Welk's baton hand was motorized so that it moved back and forth. If I designed this billboard, I would have had bubbles coming out of Larry's ears, too.

We'll end today's visit at CBS Television City, located at the corner of Beverly and Fairfax. It opened in 1952, and has been the home of scores of television shows - including plenty of talk shows ("Dinah", "The Merv Griffin Show", "The Mike Douglas Show", and more), game shows ("Match Game", "The Price is Right", "Hollywood Squares", etc.), and some legendary programs such as "All in the Family", "The Carol Burnett Show", "Playhouse 90", "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour", and many more... it's a real piece of history.

Here's an old postcard view...

...and here's a fairly contemporary photo. Sadly, in 2017 CBS was in talks to sell Television City for development. The City of Los Angeles is trying to have the site declared a historic landmark, but... L.A. loves to tear stuff down.

Part four (the final installment) of Ella's adventure's in Hollywood will be coming up!

Friday, June 29, 2018

Random Tomorrowland

I have two very nice scans from Tomorrowland to share with you today. Let's start with this charming photo (from February, 1965) of someone's grandpa at the wheel of a Mark VI Autopia vehicle. He couldn't be happier! Love the fedora. I also really like the style of the Mark VI cars with their distinctive "eyebrows" (no headlamps, unlike the Mark V versions) - I believe that these were only in use for four years (1964-1968). The wide "mouth" reminds me of a manta ray. GULP.

Next is this undated photo of the Rocket Jets, taken in the early evening (still a bit of pink glow on the horizon). It's too bad that the rockets weren't up in the air, but even so this is a beautiful shot. We get some bonus Peoplemover action (barely), and I do love that blue lozenge-shaped sign that takes me right back to the Tomorrowland of my youth. 

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Disneyland Souvenir Guidebook, 1965 - Part 4

 It's a bittersweet post today folks; we all get to enjoy more of JG's scans of his 1965 Disneyland souvenir guidebook - that's the sweet. But this is the final installment - that's the bitter. Perhaps we will all learn a little something about life.

At this point we are still enjoying a few pages touting coming attractions, which is always fun, especially when they use such amazing conceptual artwork as is seen on this next page. Both of those paintings (presumably by Herb Ryman) show a version of Tomorrowland that is considerably more elaborate than the one that we actually got - this is typical of concept art, though. Look at the soaring, pink, early version of what would eventually be Space Mountain (a "... rocket ride in outer space")!

It is fascinating to think that the first Space Mountain would not be built (in Florida) until 1975, while Disneyland wouldn't get theirs until 1977.

By 1965, "It's a Small World" was a hit at the New York World's Fair, and plans were well underway to bring the attraction to Anaheim. I find that small artwork of the fa├žade to be very cool; it's not terribly different from what was finally built, except for the colors - and the famous smiling tick-tock clock is absent at this point.

All of these scenes are so familiar to us now that the attraction has been with us for 54 years!

The text refers to the Tower of the Four Winds - this might be a holdover from the Fair, or perhaps at this juncture they intended to bring it west.

Disneyland After Dark? Yes, please. Fireworks, a bazillion lights, music on the Rivers of America, rock and roll in Tomorrowland, Skull Rock looking both beautiful and eerie... oh man.

Christmas parades, the Elliot Brothers at the Plaza Gardens, Duke Ellington performing at the Golden Horseshoe, wowee! I'm wondering what is going on in the photo of the Mark Twain... were fireworks set off directly from the Rivers of America? Look at that lineup of legendary musical talent that guests could see at no additional cost. Woody Herman, Louis Armstrong, Harry James, Stan Kenton, and so on.

At some point, you are going to get hungry, and Disneyland has got you covered. They've got everything from snack bars to "buffeterias" to table service - not to mention plenty of ice cream and popcorn carts.

Everybody knows about the rides at Disneyland, but there is so much more. "Special shows and exhibits" included things such as the "House of the Future" and the "Hall of Chemistry" (both sponsored by Monsanto), the "INA Carefree Corner", "Wurlitzer Music Hall", the "Upjohn Pharmacy", and so on.

I am a fan of all varieties of Disneyland maps, from the small gate handouts to the large souvenir wall maps. This example is pretty sweet, with its colorful spot illustrations that are so wonderful. They remind me of a Whitman activity book with stickers that you could tear out and place in their appropriate locations. 

If you really want to do things the right way, then you will stay for at least two days. Maybe three! Which means you'll need a hotel. Why not stay at the fabulous Disneyland Hotel? You can take the Monorail right from Tomorrowland. And if you are a cool customer, you will take some time to relax - no need to run yourself to exhaustion. Go for a swim or lay out in the warm sunshine. Eat a relaxing meal at the Gourmet Restaurants. Or play a round of golf, if that's your thing!

Finally, let's enjoy a few final pictures from the back cover, showing plenty of happy guests of all ages. I recognize some photos that were used in the 1963 National Geographic article, and even the 1965 Dunross bubblegum cards that I shared on this blog. There's even fun with a nun!

Well, that's it folks. I hope you enjoyed this fabulous 1965 guidebook, from the days when Disneyland was (arguably) at its peak. MANY THANKS to JG for all of his scanning, and for sharing it with us!


EXTRA! EXTRA! There have been some questions about "Calico Kate's Pantry" and the "C&H Sugar Corner". I decided to dig out my 1965 INA guidebook, and am including some maps and info for you. As you can see, Calico Kate's was located in between the Golden Horseshoe Revue and The Oaks Tavern.

Here's the description. Jellies and Jams! I need some  time to figure out how long Calico Kate's was there.

Next is a map of Main Street, and the C&H Sugar Corner was located inside the Market House.

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

More From The Parking Lot

"Hey, Major Pepperidge! Weren't we in the parking lot yesterday?". Why, yes we were, Timmy. But don't fret - today's photos were brought to us by Irene, Bruce, and James (long story!) They are undated, but I would guess that they were all taken not too long before before construction began on California Adventure (which was in 1998). 

Gosh, what's that strange pointy white building? It's almost comical how few photos I have with Space Mountain in them, especially considering that it has been there for over 40 years. The cars in the parking lot are not very inspiring, but I still have room in my cold heart for that Volkswagen minibus. Tram alert!

Imagine being able to park this close to the entrance. Or even closer, if you happened to be an early bird. Even though this was taken over 20 years ago, the cars don't look that different from what I might expect to see in any big parking lot.

This next one was taken from the western sector of the lot, looking toward the Disneyland Hotel. Bob Gurr famously said that the original Alweg monorail trains resembled a loaf of bread, and from this angle, the "Learjet" inspired Mark V train looks pretty loafy to me.

Many thanks to Irene, Bruce, and James!

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

In the Parking Lot, July 1972

Everyone loves the old Disneyland parking lot! Fun Mom and her friend are just about to hop on to a convenient tram on this overcast July (probably June, in actuality) day. We can enjoy such details as the Disneyland Hotel, a classy station wagon or two, and more high tension power lines than you can shake a stick at. 

EXTRA! K. Martinez and TokyoMagic both commented on the flyer in the hand of the lady to the right. I happen to have that one! Here's a scan of it:

Even though we are way out in section "R" we can see a few of the taller landmarks from inside the park. The cupola of City Hall, Main Street Station, and (of course) the Matterhorn all entice us toward the ticket booths. I wonder if sounds such as the train whistle or the Monorail's air horn could make it this far?

Monday, June 25, 2018

Costumed Characters, June 1977

I scanned some vintage snapshots. 1977 is vintage now!

OK, full disclosure - I work for the FBI. Also, this first photo might not be from 1977, even though it was mixed in with the other two that definitely are. In the scheme of this vast universe, which we can't even begin to comprehend, are we going to quibble about a few years here or there? Besides, it's a nice photo of Goofy throwing us a friendly wave, as Aunt Joyce thinks, "Merciful heavens!". 

The next two are fun because they feature Miss Bianca from "The Rescuers", Disney Studios successful animated feature, released this very year. I liked "The Rescuers" very much! And Bernhard and Bianca (voiced by Bob Newhart and Eva Gabor, respectively) were very appealing characters.

Bianca wears a pillbox hat, like the Halston-designed version worn by Jackie Kennedy - I'd say Bianca wore it better. Notice the little girl to the right, patiently (mostly) waiting her turn for a photo. I salute you, patient girl.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Storybook Land, April 1969

How about some super boring photos of the back of a kid's head? And Storybook Land? If that is your thing, then you are in luck. If not, please tune in tomorrow, I promise it will be better.

The Practical Pig was no fun, but he sure built a fine home out of sturdy bricks. Look at that nice little tree to the right - it was shrinkified by an early version of the Mighty Microscope. I like details such as the split rail fence (neatly whitewashed), and the little stone pathway.

These charming French medieval homes are part of Cinderella's village. Everything's just a little crooked or wavy, which shows that they were built by genuine peasants. They will soon be demolished to make way for a 22-story mixed-use building - luxury condos, with expensive shops on the lower level.

Saturday, June 23, 2018

Davey Jones' Locker, Catalina Island - September 1958

Today I have three fun photos from beautiful Santa Catalina island, located about 20 miles from the coast of Los Angeles. Catalina is a popular weekend getaway, and so they have some tourist attractions to keep visitors entertained. How about a glass-bottom boat? Those are fun. Or perhaps you can go out on a boat at night and watch them shine a powerful searchlight into the ocean - it makes the flying fish go nuts! During the day, go see the herds of genuine bison. 

OR... check out this seaside attraction, "Davey Jones (Locker?)". After several searches, I've found essentially NO information about this! Look for "Davey Jones" and you get photos of the Monkees, or the tentacled face of the character from the "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies. But I've found no descriptions or tributes of this show.

I can't quite tell if that structure is a boat of some sort, or if it is built on wood pilings (or whatever). It looks like those two friendly scuba divers emerged from the ocean (which is churning with bubbles), probably to cheers and huzzas! The bulk of the structure seems to have been a large aquarium. Love those giant fish on top - they would look fine in any mid-century home.

I found this old postcard showing a different "Davey Jones" feature - the divers seem to be wearing traditional deep sea diver's gear, complete with heavy copper helmets. How that worked as a tourist attraction I will never know.

No, that's not Martin Milner of "Adam-12" fame... it's diver John Reseck. The ladies love him! Since he is looking up, there must have been bleachers full of happy customers. Or could they be be on a boat themselves?

In the aquarium I spy some orange garibaldi, common in Catalina waters. I think I recognize the silhouette of some kelp bass too. Here endeth my knowledge of fish.

This particular slide was fun because it was hand-labeled "John Resek and baby whale". Baby whale?! Mama mia. I believe that he is holding a small horn shark. Just seconds after this picture was taken, Mr. Resek gulped the entire horn shark down in one swallow. TRUE STORY!

I also found this scan of a vintage postcard, it could have been taken on the same day as my photos.

I hope you have enjoyed your visit to Santa Catalina island.

Friday, June 22, 2018

Tomorrowland '56

Welcome to Tomorrowland 1956! Be prepared to hit the deck if an Astro Jet gets too close to your crewcut. 

Some of you may remember the two boys in the foreground, Glum Gus and Stylin' Steve. They're posing in front of the wonderful Clock of the World with their mother (I forget if she has made an appearance on GDB before). Surrounding the clock (that was somehow not sponsored by Timex) are attraction posters (hooray) and the flags of all 48 States. For some reason mom has a kung-fu grip on Steve's arm - he probably has a tendency to run away.

Check out the boy (in his souvenir hat) to the left, trying to figure out how that crazy clock worked!

How about this neat shot looking up at the new Skyway as it heads to and fro with the big tower on Holiday Hill in the distance? There are plenty of olives and toothpicks on display, as well. The Autopia is to our right, and the Yacht Bar is to our left (as is the Astro Jets). If you look closely, in the center at the bottom is a diamond-shaped sign for the Tomorrowland Boats - the ill-fated "Phantom Boats" that we all know and love.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Previously Rejected!

Here are three more scans of slides that I'd previously rejected for various reasons. For instance, the stars were not aligned favorably. But now that Mars is in retrograde (?), I am free to post these without fear of bad luck.

First up is this murky (thanks, Anscochrome), undated photo of the Plaza Pavillion. I don't have a lot of photos of this ornate, gingerbread-festooned restaurant, so it's nice to see in spite of the gloom. My favorite detail is the man who showed up in his pajamas (baby-blue!) and slippers. "Wha? How did I get here? All the other kids are going to laugh at me!". The joke's on him - there's a big test today (the results of which will go on his PERMANENT RECORD) and he didn't study at all.

Next is this exciting photo of a deadly mallard duck, enjoying a swim in the Rivers of America. He should hang on to that empty popcorn box, nice examples can sell for $90 and up on eBay!

This next one is from 1958; it was another slide that had turned red and horrible, but Photoshop did a pretty good job of restoring it. Greens are hard to recapture, and for some reason this one has good greens. I'm so proud, there are tears running down my cheeks as I type this sentence.

I hope you found today's previously-rejected slides to be worthy!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

More Frontierland Scans - 1967

Say, how about another selection of vintage Frontierland scans (from the Mysterious Donor)? 

As I think I have mentioned before, this large batch of donated scans has a ton of pictures of the Columbia. Which is OK by me. This first one is a neat angle as seen from the old fishing dock (on Tom Sawyer Island) looking back toward the shore. 

Some weirdo has decided that he prefers the view from what true sailors call "rope thingies". "Avast, ya salty baboon! Come down from the rope thingies at once, or it'll be no grog for ye!". Man, this stuff writes itself. (If one of you wants to form a punk band called "Salty Baboon", I won't stand in your way).

This lovely photo is from another unusual vantage point... the photographer was standing on Walt's balcony. Pretty sweet.

Isn't this an amazing shot? It was taken from the Disneyland & Santa Fe RR as it passed a rather large, grassy "meadow". You can see some of the buttes, mesas, and other rock formations from Nature's Wonderland. I'm kind of surprised that guests did not take similar photos from this angle - in my collection of thousands and thousands of images, I sure don't have anything like this.

Here's an aerial view showing the approximate line of sight (the giant yellow arrow) in the previous photo.

I threw in this final view for fun, even though it is a bit blurry. Most western-themed amusement parks had shootouts as part of the fun - Disneyland had them too. Here, Sheriff Lucky has gunned down a yellow-bellied, lily-livered, thievin' coyote. This scan is labeled as being from 1967, but I would wager that 1957 is more like it.

As always, many thanks to the Myserious Donor.