Tuesday, January 01, 2019

A Pair From March, 1959

Happy 2019, everybody! I hope this new year is a pip (as my grandpa would say).

I have two photos for you today, both from 1959. That's 60 years ago! This first one shows intrepid guests who have just arrived on a beautiful day in March. They parked so close to the entrance that there was no need to hop on a tram. Check out those cars. Judging from Old Glory, there was a bit of wind, but not enough to matter. 

The Disneyland Railroad is at the station, and looks very full. And as you can see, the Matterhorn is under construction in the distance, which is pretty neat.

From the same day comes this colorful and very nice photo of a Jungle Cruise boat (the "Yangtze Lotus") taking on a new load of victims. While this is a familiar view, I love everything about this image (except for the light leak at the top, perhaps). I wonder if the fellow with the red shirt and white pants is a skipper, or a mere dock hand?


walterworld said...

Thanks Major & Happy New Year

I remember once in 1997 parking right near the front gate and thinking WOW THIS IS COOL! Never got to do that again of course..

TokyoMagic! said...

Happy New Year to you, Major, and everyone!

In the second photo, I think that discolored area is actually the Aurora Borealis.

Nanook said...


What a fine way to kick-off the new year with a 60 year-old salute. And starting on the right, it appears we have a Glade-? green, 1952 Oldsmobile; then an Anniversary-? gold, 1958 Chevrolet; then a Springdale-? green-/white, 1955 Mercury. The balance of the autos are a giant blur. It appears in the second image one of the maroon-topped youngsters is jonesing for a bit of 'daddy affection' - as the other youngster is being held by the object of desire. (Either that, or the tot's merely picking the pocket of his father-!)

Thanks, Major, and a Happy 2019 to all.

K. Martinez said...

And here I thought that was a Flame tree. Happy New Year to All!

walterworld, I parked right next to the front gate too in December of 1996. And guess what? That never happened for me again either. It was kind of weird to exit the park and walk right to my car and drive away. That was a one-time only experience.

Chuck said...

Happy New Year, everyone!

We parked near the entrance like that once in early '95; like you guys, a once-in-a-lifetime event. Well, okay, I was with my cousin once when he parked up front, but that doesn't really count since he was a Club 33 member.

I always love seeing photos of the Matterhorn under construction. I wish photography had been invented when they built the Himalayas.

Note that the only US flag flying in that first photo is on the Town Square flagpole; the poles on top of City Hall, the Emporium, and the Main Street depot are all bare. I'm guessing that the high winds had something to do with that.

Melissa said...

Check the shiny hair on the fellow at far left in the Jungle Cruise queue. He mixed up his shoe polish and Brylcreem that morning.

Graffer said...

Once in the late '70s, my family went to the park with a WED employee friend for free admission. He showed his company ID at the parking booth. We were received free parking. Then the attendant tore the stub in half and put one half under the windshield wiper. That was the sign for parking lot workers to direct us out of the line of 'commoners' and drive right to the very front for parking. That only happened once too.

Happy New Year everyone.

DrGoat said...

A Happy Near Year to you Major and all the gang.
We got to park near the entrance once or twice back in those days. Our Dad was an early riser and got he troops ready early. We did have a Chevy Nomad station wagon that had a front end similar to that one. It was a turquoise color and it spent many glorious days in that parking lot.

JC Shannon said...

Those are some sweet rides in the lot. I remember waiting for the Tram, as a lad and thinking, so close, yet so far away. The giddy anticipation is something to remember. The guy getting on the Yangtze Lotus is pulling off the fedora look beautifuly. I am wondering though, what is that button on the dock for? As usual, I wanna push it. Great New Year scans today, thanks Major. Happy New Year to all!

Anonymous said...

Happy New Year! As for the comment on the Jungle Cruise CM, going back to my experience (1970), all of us rotated between dock and spiel positions. The boats were in pairs and 4 were assigned to that pairing. So for example, you'd do 2 spiels on the Yangtze, do 2 revolutions on the dock (load/unload/tickets) and 2 spiels on the boat following the Yangtze...then off on a 2 trip break in the back. Then return to the Yangtze to do it all again. When in a rotation, the person taking lunch would take a 3 trip break. We'd have to communicate this with our teammates. A meal break had to be quick because you had 3 others depending upon your return on time...if not early. We'd use the term 'bumped' from one position to the next. It was pretty much self policing. KS

Major Pepperidge said...

walterworld, thank you, and Happy New Year to you as well!

TokyoMagic!, that Aurora is so close, it’s actually in front of those trees. What a rare phenomenon!

Nanook, I knew you would like those old cars! And yes, I noticed the kid glomming on to his dad… I’ll bet the dad is so used to it that he doesn’t even notice anymore. Thanks to you!

K. Martinez, are Flame trees where Dura-Flame logs come from? I have never parked anywhere near the front gate!!

Chuck, you have a cousin who is a Club 33 member?! Holy smokes. I assume you had a chance to dine there. I wish this slide was a bit sharper so that we could get a better look at the construction on the Matterhorn, but, since it was a total surprise, I’ll take what I can get.

Melissa, that man uses genuine goose grease, mixed with Brylcreem. That hair isn’t going anywhere.

Grafer, man, all of you guys got such preferential treatment. Maybe I had bad posture and so they sent me as far away as possible? That must be it.

DrGoat, I can’t recall a time when we didn’t have to hop on a tram, but I liked the tram, so I didn’t feel like I was suffering too much! I love turquoise cars from the 50’s and 60’s, if I ever could afford a vintage automobile, I might go for a nice two-tone of turquoise and cream.

Jonathan, I know essentially nothing about vintage cars, but I love them! I’d rather have a beautiful old car than the most expensive super car made today. As for fedoras, some guys can just make them work. Not me, though.

KS, thanks for the inside scoop! I never knew that the dock and spiel positions were rotated. Makes sense though. A “3 trip break”… only at Disneyland! I love that kind of stuff.

Melissa said...

Mögen Sie alle Schweine haben. F - Give Your Hair a Honk!
You'll Never Be the Ugly Duckling when you use Genuine Good Grease™!
Genuine Good Grease™: At Least it's Not Grouse Grease!

That IS really interesting about rotating tasks. I bet it helped make the day go faster. When I worked in a building with a security guard on every floor, the guards would switch floors at regular intervals to prevent the zoning out you can do if you just look at the same thing all day.

Melissa said...

(Uh, that German line is something I accidentally pasted in, and didn't notice in time. I'm not really a German spy or something. The literal translation is, "May you all have a pig," but idiomatically it's just a way of saying "good luck.")

Nanook said...

@ Melissa-

And mazel tov to you, too-!

Chuck said...

Major, I have a cousin who was a Club 33 member, part of a corporate membership purchased by the company he worked for at the time. He is no longer a member, although he is an APH at both Disneyland & Knott's.

He did get us into Club 33 once in '95, and it was as classy an experience as everyone speaks about. I shot half a roll of film there. It's also the only roll of film I ever shot that was blown in processing, resulting in some seriously muddy pictures and a few holes in the negatives. Great memories, though.

Anonymous said...

Terrific start to the New Year with these photos and classic GDB dialog.

Especially enjoying the scoop on being a Skipper. That was one Disney job I always wanted. But since I never got any Disney job, it doesn't hurt less. Seems like it would have been a lot of fun.

I wonder why other piloting jobs didn't develop the humorous patter, the monorail for example? The JC seems unique in the interactive nature of the piloting, many other positions rely on pre-recorded patter.

Also, a great view in the background of the Tahitian Terrace, recently renovated into the "Tropical Hideaway". Seems like this prime real estate is getting some use.

We never parked anywhere near the front gate in my memory. It was a always a glorious hike in the morning and a dejected slog in the evening. I wish Thufer could have seen the parking lot pics. Thanks to Nanook for the vehicle ID's.