Friday, December 20, 2019

A Pair From January, 1962

I have a nice pair of photos for you today, from sometime in January, 1962 - so, 57 years ago, give or take a few days. Let's start with this sweet image of the Mark II Monorail Blue. "Old Bluie" I calls it. It's got a bubble dome! It's got a rotating amber light! It has the Santa Fe logo (in red), and the ALWEG name on the side! ("Alweg" would be a swell name for a pet, don't you think?). If it has a cup holder, I'm sold. I like the criss-crossing beamway, along with the "S"-curve for added excitement. If only there was a transparent tube for the Monorail to pass through so that it could go underwater. I have big ideas, I tell ya. BIG.

Here's a zoom-in, for a look at the lucky passengers. Babushka to our left!

Next is this lovely view of the "Garden Apartments" at the Disneyland Hotel. Why they are called the Garden Apartments is beyond me. Maybe they were built by Sir Albert Garden. Various tropical and even desert plants surround a reflecting pond that is perfect for throwing pennies into. You know it happened. What a pleasant place to stay during your three-day visit to Disneyland.


Nanook said...


"Lucky passengers", indeed. And from this angle, they almost look as though they're passengers on a train trip traversing the country.

Thanks, Major.

TokyoMagic! said...

I see a giant clam shell at the top of that hotel waterfall! I wonder if it was a copy of the ones in the Submarine lagoon?

Chuck said...

"...your three-day visit to Disneyland." I'm imagining that in three days of January, 1962, even with reduced operating hours you'd still get to ride everything that was open several times without feeling rushed or trapped in a line all the time. I wonder if you could do that with today's crowds.

I should have named one of my kids "Alweg." Yes, "Douglas Alweg Monsanto." The other could have been "Goodyear G.E. Bell." That would have ensured a great, big, beautiful tomorrow for both of them.

Andrew said...

Those are perfect names, Chuck! :)

I'd bet the "rotating amber light" would look awesome as it went through your proposed "transparent tube," Major!

JC Shannon said...

Alweg is indeed a good name for a pet. A pigmy pony or a capybara would be best. That is a beautiful job of landscaping. I wish I could have stayed there. Thanks major.

Budblade said...

Monorail and Babushka in the same post!? I am overwhelmed!

"Lou and Sue" said...

Major, they were named after Sir Albert Apartments.

Great pictures and commentary today - thank you! :)


DrGoat said...

Your pics today are a sight for sore eyes. Nice start to the morning.
Alweg...great name. I do like that name for a Capybara JC, or a duck or a character from Harry Potter.
A three day in January would have been a real treat. We never got winter vacations. Only late spring, early summer. The Park was more crowded but who cared back then.
Good names Chuck. Douglas 'Al' Monsanto has a great ring to it. Tried to think of something clever but my brain isn't engaged quite yet.
All I came up with was Upjohn Alweg Toad.
Thank you Major, and a great relaxing weekend to all.

zach said...

Swell photos today. Is that guy in the first pic playing a harmonica in a red suit? Correct me if I'm wrong about the color. My eyes don't see red or green quite right.

Because my Dad worked for Southern Pacific RR we were able to ride the DL RR free on his employee Pass (Santa Fe reciprocated). I don't remember if it worked on the Monorail.

And I think I see the Autopia without the center rail? You really felt like you were driving and steering with a purpose. Or you could bang from side to side if that was your thing.

And who wouldn't want a beer named 'Rotating Amber Light'?

Thanks Major and the unknown photographer from the past whos name may or may not have been Alweg.


K. Martinez said...

I see telephone poles on the horizon. Thanks for the fix, Major.

Anonymous said...

I always wondered why the monorail had the rotating amber light, since there were no grade crossings or other traffic. I just realized that it was "because they could".

I miss all of this so much.

Thanks everyone, and especially the Major for hosting this party.

J "Alweg" G

Anonymous said...

I'm struck by the folks in the zoomed picture inside the Mark. They look so amazed by the latest technology. And they...and I were! KS

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, they have all of their worldly belongings in bindles and rucksacks. Including some live chickens.

TokyoMagic!, it isn’t a copy of the Sub lagoon clamshell, it is a brother of it.

Chuck, in 1962 you’d probably have time to ride everything 5 times in three days! It would be glorious. You can name your dog Kaiser “Dutch Boy” Crane!

Andrew, there is no situatation that isn’t improved by a rotating amber light. Weddings, funerals, poetry readings, barbecues… you name it.

Jonathan, do people have pet capybaras?? I would want one of those, even though they freak me out a little. Those are some BIG rodents.

Budblade, I hope you were sitting down and were wearing appropriate headgear!

Lou and Sue, I think I remember reading about that in history class.

DrGoat, ha ha, Alweg must be Hedwig’s sister (or brother?). My grandpa once planned on taking us to Disneyland, spending the night at the Disneyland Hotel, but then he got sick and it never happened. I don’t know if you ever watched the comedy show “Eagleheart” with Chris Elliot, but his character’s name was “Chris Monsanto”, which I thought was hilarious. Monsanto was one of the most hated names in the world at that point. “Upjohn Alweg Toad” is pretty good!

dzacher, yes, that man IS playing a harmonica… it is none other than a young Bob Dylan! This was just before he hit it big in the folk scene. I want to ride the DLRR for free in 1962, how do we make that happen? The Autopia didn’t get its center rail until 1965; knowing how kids are, I’m surprised that there weren’t 12-car pileups 50 times a day.

K. Martinez, it’s a Christmas miracle!

JG, yeah, the light just looked cool. I remember having a toy police car and it had a red light on the top that lit up (and got hot!), for me it turned a good toy into a GREAT toy.

Major Pepperidge said...

KS, it is kind of cute how excited everyone on the Monrail looks!

Nanook said...


Everyone has come-up with such great names, and all I can think of is: "Mr. Johnson... oh, Mr. Johnson....."

"Lou and Sue" said...

Good luck topping DrGoat’s Upjohn Alweg Toad!

We stayed at the Garden Apartments and they were a slice of heaven - especially to us midwesterners who get cold weather and snow for more than 6 months a year. The 1st-floor apartments each had their own private enclosed patios with lots of greenery and flowering plants . . . Orange trees, too. The only thing that could beat the experience of staying there would’ve been to live in California year-round. Over the years, quite a few of my relatives and a few friends moved to California after first going on vacations there. I LOVE California!

K. Martinez said...

The only ones I could come up with were Rich Field and ADA Crane.

TokyoMagic! said...

Wurlitzer Hallmark Swift? Wurl, for short.

"Lou and Sue" said...

For a girl: Carnation Carrousel or Babushka Blue Bayou

Melissa said...

"Alweg" always makes me think of the German "alles ist weg" (everything is gone). Also of Wegmans, which is a grocery chain here in the NE US. (Kind of Trader Joe's-ish.)

Starbuck Alweg Dole?

Melissa said...


TokyoMagic! said...

Wonder Del Monte. (Bianca Del Rio's illegitimate half-sister.)

"Lou and Sue" said...

Oops, my girl names don’t count. They aren’t of extinct attractions. I typed them while at work and wasn’t thinking, obviously. I normally don’t, while at work.

Nanook said...

@ Sue-
Is your boss up-to-speed on that little 'quality' of yours-?

"Lou and Sue" said...


"Lou and Sue" said...

Tahitian Rainbow

Am home from work now.

K. Martinez said...

TokyoMagic! If you're going that route Freida Lay and her Kid used to reside in Frontierland.

Major Pepperidge said...

Nanook, “Mr. Johnson” is perfectly cromulent.

Lou and Sue, ha ha, it’s interesting to read such a positive remark about California - I mostly see really negative things. Yes, there’s bad traffic. But there are a lot of wonderful things in the SoCal area if you are willing to look for them. I am jealous of your experience with the garden apartments, I’m sure it was fantastic to stay there.

K. Martinez, ha ha, I would have never thought of “ADA”!

TokyoMagic!, I was trying to stick with Tomorrowland names, but I didn’t state the rules, so you have been grandfathered in!

Lou and Sue, it seems like “Sunkist” would be a good name for a girl.

Melissa, “alles is weg” is pretty dark, I prefer thinking about Wegmans grocery store. Or William Wegman’s weimaraners.

Melissa, thanks to NASA technology, the Babushkarail can become a reality.

TokyoMagic!, who is Bianca Del Rio?

Lou and Sue, like I said to TokyoMagic, I didn’t state the rules, so anything goes.

Nanook, let us hope not

Lou and Sue, you need one of those programs that instantly switches your computer to look like regular work!

Lou and Sue, that’s the name I will give my pet iguana.

K. Martinez, Freida Lay? This is a family blog!

"Lou and Sue" said...

Those ponds around the Garden Apartment grounds were stocked with lots of big colorful Koi. I loved watching them so much that, as a kid, I got a fishbowl and a couple goldfish . . . then I got a small aquarium and added fantail goldfish and more. I had them for a few years, and eventually got a bigger tank and more fish, but the darn aquarium filter pump's gurgling sound kept me awake at night, so we moved it to our kitchen area. The gurgling sound eventually drove my mother nuts, so my fish went to a new home (NOT the toilet - but to my friend's huge basement-family-room tank). I still love to see ponds with Koi - they always remind me of Disneyland.