Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Castle, May 1958

I don't want to brag, but today marks the first time that anybody on the internet has ever posted a photo of Disneyland's Sleeping Beauty Castle. What a coup! I don't really know why nobody else has shared a photo of this landmark, but by golly, I leapt on the opportunity to scoop everyone. Some might call me a hero, but I prefer to be known as a boy genius.

This photo is from May of 1958, and the cloud cover looks suspiciously like the early arrival of "June Gloom". Sure, this first-ever internet photo of Sleeping Beauty Castle is historic and amazing, and I should probably receive a valuable award, but the fun part of the image is the people. Just look at 'em go! They're like Sea Monkeys.

Let's zoom in, shall we? I admire the crazy straw hats on the two ladies near to the right - it is people like them that help keep the crows out of Disneyland. I enjoy observing the clothing that people wore 60 years ago, especially the guy with the blue jacket and untucked shirt. Très chic!

I wonder what's going on in the lower left? Three men are huddled around... something. Unfortunately they are obscuring whatever that yellow and red object is. The man in the striped shirt appears to be toting a Kodak Brownie. Zooming in further didn't help, so I guess we'll never solve this important mystery.

I only had one more photo from this May 1958 batch, and it shows the delightful Burning Settler's Cabin. If it wasn't for the dead guy draped over that bench, I wouldn't mind toasting some marshmallows and playing some folks songs on my banjo.


Nanook said...


What a coup, indeed-! (Sometimes you just gotta be the trailblazer).

Actually, I was thinking the man kneeling on our left was holding a Polaroid Camera - possibly even a Model 95, the first model introduced in 1948. Sorry, Kodak.

Thanks, Major.

TokyoMagic! said...

Could the thing that those guys are huddled around, be a monkey? The umbrella looks like it has "Pintos" printed on it. The little yellow and red cart that the umbrella appears to be attached to has a word printed on it as well and it looks like it begins with "P." Or maybe an outdoor vendor was selling chocolate-covered frozen pinto beans on a stick? The guy in the red and white striped shirt does look like he has a stick in his mouth.


Those three men you see are two separate vignettes . The farthest back is a DL castmember attending a Disneyland PEANUT vending cart with umbrella-the old short two wheeled ones.
In front of the Peanut cart is a man (smoking??) squated down to the level of a baby stroller .... in front of the stroller stands a younger man who had probably been pushing the stroller before coming to a rest near the peanut vending cart .
I hope they were not planning on giving the baby some peanut!!


Ok - I retract that above- I took my contacts out and put on my glasses . It is indeed a PINTOS cart !! What ever the hell that is!! Lol.

Chuck said...

Congratulations on your journalistic coup!

I think that the sign on the left side of the umbrella says "Photos $1," although I agree the sign to the right sure does look like it says "Pintos". If you look at the red-and-yellow umbrella stand, you can make out the letters "Ph," which, in conjunction with the Polaroid, also suggests "Photos," although admittedly the "Ph" could also suggest some kind of acid test. Maybe this is a young Ken Kesey.

JC Shannon said...

All these mysterious objects in Disneyland photos lately are certainly a puzzle. They keep me up at night, I tell ya. Until your photo today, I didn't even realize Disneyland had a castle. These photos are truly groundbreaking. The Burning Settler's Cabin is a must snap on the river. Quite impressive for it's time. I want a straw hat like that for my collection, it makes a bold statement and is flattering to both men and women. Hey Major, I heard no one has taken a photo of the Mark Twain yet either. Thanks for today's pics.

Melissa said...

Clearly, the Kingston Trio has been contracted to repair one if Disneyland's fleet of Pimentos carts. Pimentos! Roasted Pimentos onna stick!

Melissa said...

Someone's in the cabin with Dynamite,
Someone's in the cabin, and thar she blo-ows,
Someone's in the cabin with Dynamite,
While I'm strummin' on my old banjo.
Singin' flee! Fire! Ow, it's an arrow,
Flee! Fire! Ow, it's an arro-o-o-ow,
Flee! Fire! Ow, it's an arrow,
While I'm strummin' on my old banjo.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, I wonder how much the introduction of the instant camera affected Kodak? I know they came out with their own version much later, but it sure seems like they had the home photography thing in their pocket until digital photography came along.

TokyoMagic!, if there’s a monkey there I sure don’t see it. Maybe it’s one of those invisible monkeys that plague me when I’m on the bus. I saw the words on the umbrella, and don’t know what to make of it. Frozen pinto beans on a stick is a good guess, and now I’m hungry!

Mike Cozart, I realize that a photo can flatten perspective, but it sure looks like those guys are all huddled together. I’ve never seen a yellow peanut vending cart at Disneyland before… the popcorn vendors sold peanuts, and I know there was usually one of the red carts stationed not far from the front of the castle. I don’t see a stroller either, am I losing my marbles?

Mike Cozart II, a pinto is a horse, so obviously the cart is selling chunks of raw horse meat. That was probably a fad in the 50’s!

Chuck, thank you. I’m sitting by the phone awaiting a phone call from the Mayor. Aha, PHOTOS makes more sense! If Nanook is right and the guy is holding a Polaroid, could it be that at one time you could get an instant photo taken? Perhaps it was put in one of those decorative paper holders. Not that I’ve ever seen one after decades of looking at Disneyland ephemera, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t out there.

Jonathan, just like you, I didn’t know that Disneyland had a castle. NOBODY DID! This is why today is such an amazing occasion. I was so excited to be able to share this with my fellow gorillas. My mom has this weird little straw hat with paper flowers that she swears she bought at Disneyland when she was a girl. It’s possible, but it has no label indicating that it’s from the park. Unfortunately. Because then I could sell it on eBay for 8 million dollars. What is this “Mark Twain” you speak of?

Melissa, man oh man, I listened to some Kingston Trio stuff a while ago; the songs are good (almost as good as The Folksmen), but when they start talking to the audience, it almost really seems like “A Mighty Wind”.

Melissa II, I can’t read that without imagining a bald Harry Shearer singing that song!

K. Martinez said...

It's the moment you've all been waiting for. The eight wonder of the world! Ladies and gentleman! It's the backside of people! There it is folks. The back side of people. Now over here we have...

The Castle shot is beautiful. I even like the muted color. Thanks, Major.

Anonymous said...

Looks like Slim is wearing his new Arrow shirt.

That's what comes from playing with matches.

Major, that's a great shot of the castle, nothing like starting at the top. The gilded ornamentation looks particularly fresh and bright.

Were those straw hats with the "wild edge" a souvenir of Tom Sawyer's Island? They seem a little "themed" to be worn in from the outside, and they resemble the hat on the silhouetted boy on the TSI attraction poster.

I remember having one about this time, I don't recall how I got it, but I know it wasn't from Disneyland.


Melissa said...

So is that castle what was there before Jabba's palace?

Major Pepperidge said...

K. Martinez, hmmm, somehow seeing the backside of people just doesn’t seem that magical. In fact, some of those backsides need covering up! I agree, the castle shot is a nice one, even if it first appears like nothing that special.

JG, I am not sure if the gold on the castle is genuine gold leaf, but I believe that it is; they reasoned (wisely) that it would never tarnish. Back in those days it probably didn’t break the bank to have it done, either. You should have seen how much it cost to gold leaf my Bentley! It’s true that the straw hats look out of place in the other lands, but that’s part of the charm.

Melissa, the castle was built OVER Jabba’s palace.