Friday, June 28, 2019

Two Fun Views, 1962

I have two nice photos for you today, to get your Friday on its way - starting with this nice shot of the Fantasyland Autopia, with those kooky Mark V vehicles. These were used from 1959 to 1963; they look like they've had too much coffee. Love those vintage colors - aqua, cream, and coral pink (with a darker blue just visible in the background).  A cast member makes sure that a boy is properly seat-belted, while red-pants girl wishes he would hurry it up already. As always, I love the criss-crossing tracks for the Autopia and Monorail.

ARRR! Sorry if I startled you. Two familiar boys pose with peg-legged Cap'n Guy, (Scourge of the Seven Seas, probably) near the dining area behind the Chicken of the Sea Pirate Ship. The kid to our left looks pretty thrilled, while his older brother is very chill. The Cap'n doesn't look so bad here; maybe he had that fatherly quality, like Long John Silver. But don't you cross him, or you'll be marooned on a desert island. Notice that the lady to the right is holding a card in her hand...

... zooming in, we can see that Captain Guy is holding a red pen in one hand and a stack of cards in the other - I only recently saw an example of one of these scarce "Honorary Skipper" cards. The Cap'n would autograph it for you - what an awesome souvenir!


Nanook said...

When looking at the first picture and the apparent procedure involved in getting things started, it appeared our young guest was wearing a sport coat. Which made me think instantly of our favorite 'brother act' seen recently on these pages. I hadn't realized he was one and the same: the younger brother.

Gotta love those "Honorary Skipper" cards. (Talk about rare collectibles-!)

Thanks, Major.

TokyoMagic! said...

I think "Captain Guy" just finished playing Tic Tac Toe on the back or shoulder of "He'll Grow Into Them."

Chuck said...

I forget sometimes that it took awhile for the Skull Rock plantings to fill in (probably because I'm too young to have ever seen it this way in person), but you can clearly see the "Casey JR. R.R." planing in the background in the second picture and the close-up. It always felt to me like its own little hideaway, and it did a great job of making you forget how close you were to everything else in Fantasyland.

For those of you with memories of this place as an older youth/adult (my last sighting was as a not-quite-8-year-old in 1976), was there a "back entrance" to the seating area, or could you only enter across the bridge from the Jolly Roger or through the cave behind Skull Rock?

Chuck said...

Make that "...planting in the background..."

TokyoMagic! said...

Chuck, there was a path just to the right of the Casey Jr. station and loading area, which led to the cove's dining area. However, it didn't have a "cave" or rockwork overhead, like the entrance over by Monstro had.

TokyoMagic! said...

Chuck, oops, I forgot to post this link. You can sort of make out the pathway in this GDB post from earlier this year: Black and White Pirate Ship Pics

Chuck said...

TM!, I think I see what you're talking about. The entrance is in that area behind the treasure chest, right?

TokyoMagic! said...

Chuck, yes!

Andrew said...

With those huge headlights, the Autopia cars look alive! The lightbulbs themselves almost look like pupils.

I cann't see kids today being too excited about meaning a generic pirate captain... in Disneyland, at least.

stu29573 said...

Red pant girl is moping because she wanted a cream car and even if she skips this one, the next is aqua too. She just HATES aqua!
The good Cap'n just told the boys, "Good work, lads, but I'll probably kill you in the morning."

"Lou and Sue" said...

Major, I love your "too much coffee" comment!

I wonder if the Cap'n had his knee bent back (which would look stupid from the side) or if he had it bent and "tied up" - which would be painful. Or, if the poor guy was truly missing a leg. (By the way, that waste can sure is snazzy-looking!)

Thanks for posting these, Major!


stu29573 said...

Captain Guy was really missing a leg. He lost it in the Korean war. According to an account on Daveland, the "crew" of the ship had to make sure all spills were cleaned up quickly, so he wouldn't slip and fall. It also said that his parrot bit people frequently. It was clearly a different time!

Jason Schultz said...

stu29573, the man's name was Guy Exon and he lost his leg in World War II. He was a prisoner of war. After leaving Disneyland he devoted his efforts to helping disabled people. I don't have all my information at hand, but you can get a sense of his background by going to this document and searching for "Exon": I didn't know he had founded Indianland, Inc.!

Melissa said...

Okay, I feel like I've known these matching boys too long to keep calling them "Big Brother" and "Little Brother," or anything similarly anonymous. In honor of their Mom's big, fabulous eyewear in other photos, from here on out I'm going to call them Elton and John.

First picture: I've never seen so many cute clothes on so many impatient kids! The lady in blue at far left looks for all the world like she's reading her smartphone. Is that a camera she's holding? And I spy another pair of white cat's eye shades on the lady at center.

Aqua/turquoise cars from this period always make me think of the story of my mother's first car in the mid-1960s. Grandma would only co-sign for the loan if she got the turquoise one instead of the baby blue one she really wanted.

Second picture: I never noticed before how heavily Brylcreemed John is! Must be the angle of the sun in this picture that brings out the glossy sheen. Elton's dress shoes look as oversized on him as his sport coat. Nut he's not about to be a Philistine like his brother and wear his old sneakers.

Pirates have to be careful with their peg legs or they'll get a Long John Sliver. Captain guy sounds like a real cool cat! Love his chest holster.

@Sue, Disney trash cans are one of my favorite little details that help set the mood of an area.

JC Shannon said...

Where were you in 62? Disneyland of course. I never got to see the pirate, but what a story and souvenir huh? The Autopia was always a must ride for me. I couldn't wait to drive a car, and this was the next best thing. One of those cars would look great in my garage, surf green of course. Long John Sliver, good one Mellissa! Thanks Major.

JG said...

Wow, these are fine shots for Friday.

It's odd that I don't recall the bug-eyed Autopia cars, but I sure love the colors on these. That back area where the freeways, People Movers and Monorails all entwine is one of the nicest "quiet area" in the Park. I wish there was a pedestrian route with benches back there, what a fine hideout that would be.

Speaking of hideouts, the Skull Rock Grotto was probably the best ever, and the one I miss most. Thanks everyone for the information about Captain Guy. Disneyland has so many fascinating stories about the early CM's. I don't recall meeting him or seeing him except in these photos.

@Chuck, the Grotto had two entrances and one exit, although I think you could exit theoretically back out through the Tuna Clipper, or even the first entrance. The first entrance was to the left (as you face the boat) over by Casey. There was a perforated rock wall that can be seen in photos. This walk overlooked the little lagoon and it's tiny beach with the half-buried treasure. I always wanted to jump over the low rocks and run down that beach, but they would hang you from the yardarm. The second entrance was the exit pier out of the Tuna Clipper, where today's photo was made.

The exit was to the right, where you came out under the Skull next to Monstro. There was no other back entrance or opening. The right hand walk was signed as "Exit Only" but the rules were not hard-and-fast and people came and went on both walks. I don't recall this area ever crowded, seemed like we could always find a table. The rock wall against Casey's track had bamboo plants and heavy shrubbery so even sitting on the molded rock bench that was part of the wall, you couldn't see any of the ride behind. The track was quite elevated, I think the grotto grade was pushed down somewhat, so you were way below the track. It wasn't evident until the train went by making a lot of noise. Between the bushes and the waterfalls, it was a "fine and private place", also quite cool.

In the tunnel under the skull was a rock window where you could look out behind the waterfalls, much like Schweitzer Falls. There was also a heavy wooden door with an iron ring and hinges that looked like a treasure room, undoubtedly concealing the pump room for the waterfall. Daveland has some good photos of the rock window, but I have never seen photos of the wood door.

Thank you Major for these fun photos. Those boys are having a great trip, makes up for having to dress up. I wonder if they got to take the jackets off on TSI? They look like Tom Sawyer dressed for church.


Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, yep, it’s that notorious pair of brothers again! I think you’ll see them at least one more time - but what will they be doing?!?!. I would love to have one of those Honorary Skipper cards, but they seem to be quite scarce these days.

TokyoMagic!, the Cap’n does enjoy his little games. It’s how he stays sane on those long sea voyages.

Chuck, yeah, they were close to the Casey Jr. embankment, and were standing on the gangplank on the port side of the ship. Wow, I will be fascinated to find out if there was a back entrance!

TokyoMagic!, jeez, that photo isn’t making it clear for me. DO MORE WORK! (kidding)

Chuck, no fair, you have bionic eyes.

TokyoMagic!, I never know if I should comment on people’s side conversations!

Penna. Andrew, the eyeballs must have scared people, because the next Autopia vehicle is very similar, only without the headlamps. It makes them look eyeless, which is almost worse.

stu29573, what, how can anybody hate aqua? It’s the color of swimming pools, and, er… other aqua stuff! The Cap’n was cruel, but fair. But cruel.

Lou and Sue, I am quite sure that the Cap’n really was missing a leg!

stu29573, ah, you know a lot more about him than I do. I wonder what he went on to do after his stint as a sea captain was over?

Jason Schultz, wow, no sooner did I ask the question than I see that you answered it. Plus more cool info. “Indianland”, Thank you for that amazing link!

Melissa, I always thought of them as “Thing 1” and “Thing 2”, but “Elton” and “John” works too. I didn’t really notice the clothes on the kids, but I guess they look pretty spiffy. The lady in blue is speaking into her shoe phone. Man, your grandma was a tough customer! And yes, that boy has a large dollop of “greasy kid stuff” in his hair, poor guy.

Jonathan, I wasn’t at Disneyland yet… just a bit early for me. I hear lots of rumors that the Autopia is likely to be removed one of these days, since it takes up so much real estate; that would make me sad.

JG, it’s hard for me to choose, but I am fond of the colors that were used when there were metallic hues - gold, bronze, silver, and a deep silvery blue. Similar to the Skyway buckets, I believe. Captain Guy, I don’t think he was there for more than about 2 years. I think the “perforated rock wall” you refer to is the “cave” that Chuck was talking about, but… maybe not. Man, you know that Pirate Ship/Skull Rock area better than I know anything! I have at least one photo from the grotto behind the waterfalls, it’s one of my favorites. Glad you liked today’s pix!

Clyde Hughes said...

Wow, these are great!
Photo #1 is just great... Notice how the kids are standing exactly on the numbers? Yes, the clothes are just great, too, as well as the background of the Autopia.

I wonder if the turquoise woman is holding a super 8mm camera? Either that, or she may have a portable CB radio. "Breaker One Nine..."

Now the pirate photo... I vaguely remember dressing up when visiting theme parks..I forgot what would happen to my sports coat on the wet rides, though. ;-) And the cuffs on the jeans are priceless!

Thanks Major!

Jason Schultz said...

I was able to find some more information on Guy Rush Exon (3/26/1922-10/17/1992) in my email.

From the June 1958 Disneylander: "Captain Guy Exon's background has prepared him well for the role he plays here. Guy was born and raised in the 'Wild West' town of Pojaque, New Mexico, travelled to the Aleutians, Africa and Europe as a Paratrooper in World War II, and was a prisoner of war in Germany.

"He travelled extensively in South American countries, where he became known as the first one-legged man to travel over the Pan-American Highway, and was a beachcomber in Hawaii after trying the academic road at SMU in Texas.

"When Guy returned to the States, he spent a year-and-one-half in an Army Hospital where he became interested in handicapped people. After leaving the hospital he spent some time working with the Good Will Industries as Public Relations Manager."

He joined the Army on July 10, 1940, and was released January 17, 1946. He lost his leg fighting at Anzio Beachhead in Italy. He was with the First Special Services Forces composed of American and Canadian forces. He was a 1963 graduate of the Palmer College of Chiropractic and was then known as Dr. Guy R. Exon. Such a fascinating life!

stu29573 said...

Makes you wonder why he turned to piracy....Just kiddind! Good stuff!

zach said...

I hope the kid busing his trash, thank you, kept the napkin and the cup to help fund his retirement.

I just now realized the Autopia CMs are dressed like every service station attendant in the 50s. How'd I miss that?

Fun photos today. I never heard of Cap'n Guy, thanks all for the educatin' you all provide.


Melissa said...

Wow, Cap'n Dr. Guy was quite an accomplished fellow; sounds like he had an fascinating life, too.

Chuck said...

Wow - Captain Guy was with the First Special Service Force! That's the granddaddy (hey - a word with four "d's" in it!) of both US and Canadian Special Operations forces. On that fact alone he earned my respect. Everything else makes him just that much more awesomer.

TM!, thanks for the vector. I don't have any recollection of that back entrance.

JG, you are the Master of Skull Rock Recollection, and I bow to your amazing powers of remembery. I do remember the locked door and the "window" behind the falls. I can't remember if we've seen pictures and had a conversation about it here or at Daveland. Quick, Robin - to the Research Cave!

Major, kindly mind your own business and refrain from butting into other people's private Internet message board conversations. How rude! Some people...acting like they own the place... ;-)

Chuck said...

Here's an overhead shot of part of the back entrance (from the 9 Aug edition of Gorilla's Don't Blog (Web Edition).

Here's a decent photo of the seating area.

And here's a shot of the whole area, including the beach JG describes. The Fishmonger's blocks most of the perforated rocks along the walkway, but you can get the gist of what he describes. I still don't remember that area (we always walked through the ship), but the map is now inside my head and I know what to look for from now on. One more piece of the puzzle falls into place...

Here's another one from 1974, and with the growth I can now see why I never noticed it before.

For comparison, here's how it looked in 1957, before Skull Rock, with a similar composition from 1972.

And I'll include this photo just because it's so freaking amazing.

(BTW, the discussion I was thinking about was over at Daveland, although I remember some of us reminiscing about the locked door here at some point in the last 9 years.)

Chuck said...

I guess the door wasn't locked...

Major Pepperidge said...

Clyde Hughes, those kids knew how to behave! I think you are right, that lady is probably holding some sort of movie camera - it’s so small it must be 8mm. I think the only time I got even a little dressed up at Disneyland was Grad Nite!

Jason Schultz, thank you for more Guy Exon information. Fantastic! I’ve wondered about him for a long time. Sounds like he had quite an interesting life, and that the loss of a leg didn’t hold him back in any way. Admiral Joe probably liked him!

stu29573, I wonder if it was something as simple as a “help wanted” ad for a man with a wooden leg??

dzacher, oh man, I think of all of the “throw away” paper items that I would have held onto, had I known any better. And good eye on the CMs and their service station outfits!

Melissa, yeah, he was a real adventurer - pretty cool.

Chuck, now I wish I knew more about Guy Exon’s life. If only he’d written a biography. I feel like a dummy, since I don’t remember ANYTHING about the details of Skull Rock or the Lagoon, while you guys remember all kinds of obscure minutiae. I think Daveland had a photo that showed the “locked door” - and am pretty sure that I do not.

Chuck, thank you for all of the photo linkes - I hate to think how much time you put into doing all of that research! Something that I was not willing to do (though I had to drive a lot today and was away from my computer). That photo of the whole area does make it clear to me where the other walkway was, so that was very helpful. If I had some kind of “Above and Beyond the Call of Duty” award, I would give it to you!

Chuck, oh man, I obviously had forgotten about that very unusual photo! I guess I can't remember all 10,000 (or however many there have been) pictures.

stu29573 said...

Hey, I was the first comment on the Daveland discussion...and it was a really stupid joke! Yay, me!!!

Chuck said...

Major, don't feel bad - I'm the one who asked the question and started off this whole tangent discussion in the first place. And it didn't take that long, just four or five hours. ;-)

Actually, it was only 25 minutes from the time I started looking for pictures until I pushed "Publish Your Comment," and if I hadn't found it enjoyable, I wouldn't have done it in the first place. You deserve an “Above and Beyond the Call of Duty” award simply for running this blog. Thank YOU.

JG said...

@Chuck, you did a great job researching pictures to illustrate my walk-through. Thank you!

I want to add one more little detail that has stuck in my mind for so many years. This little gem got me searching on-line for photos of the Skull Rock Grotto, and brought me eventually to Yesterland and from there to GDB.

The paving in the Grotto was an unusual "pebble" pattern, not the smooth colored concrete "slurry" used elsewhere. It doesn't show well in any of the photos referenced so far because it was so small a pattern. The multicolored little round and oval stones, about the size of quarters to 50 cent pieces in a dark or black matrix was only used in two places in the Park that I can recall. You can get a feel for it in the photo tagged "Overhead shot" 2-61-17A, there is a couple sitting on the rock benches by a planter. I remember sitting in that exact spot with Mom and Dad. Also here >>

The other pebble pave location is (was) still there, outside the restrooms inside the Enchanted Tiki Room enclosure. That paving is original to the ETR and (if it is still there) might be the last original pavement walked by Walt Disney.

In the linked photo tagged "Shot of the whole area", the entry to the west walk is the gap between the planter and the rock near the Casey Jr. load platform. There is a person in a white shirt standing right "above" the entrance in the photo. The walk curves around behind the pirate ship. For some reason, this area is not well-documented in photos, maybe there was no dramatic backdrop or something.

There are several good pictures of the other exit at the east end,

And lastly, here are some pics of Mr. Exon, from Daveland >>

The French author Proust had memories revived by a little cookie. Mine came back from a picture of pebble paving.

Thanks Chuck and Major for helping me remember.