Friday, June 30, 2023

Soggy Tomorrowland, March 1973

Both of today's photos show a Disneyland that's been drenched with rain - which might seem gloomy to some. But living in mostly-parched Southern California has me pining for rainy days, gray clouds, puddles on the street, and my favorite - the sound of rain.  

Here's a nice exterior of the Flight to the Moon attraction. The Moonliner was gone, but the ride was new and improved. Two larger theaters were built, but apparently there was no need for the distinctive domes that used to be a feature of the old attraction. There was a fancy new pre-show with a Mission Control populated by AA figures, including Tom Morrow. I was only recently made aware that passers-by could see part of the pre-show scene through the large windows in front.

Now we're out in the Plaza looking back toward Tomorrowland... the Peoplemover is empty, but that might just be due to the inclement weather (those seats could be wet). Or the ride wasn't running at all, I'm not sure if water would affect the necessary friction that drove the trains. In the distance, America the Beautiful looks very closed. Hopefully Adventure Thru Inner Space was operating, or I'll make a scene!

Thursday, June 29, 2023

Mark I Monorail, March 1961

I have a pair of swell photos from Tomorrowland, with the plucky li'l red Mark I Monorail waiting at the station. Being 1961, it wouldn't be long before the Mark II Monorail would replace the Mark I trains, and the track would be extended all the way to the Disneyland Hotel and back. Overhead a few Skyway gondolas pass, while the tiny stage (which always makes me think of a conning tower for some reason) is Yachtsmen-less at the moment.

Those flower beds really help to make Tomorrow look like it's going to be a nice place to live.

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Beauties From Lou and Sue, September 1971

It's time for some Lou and Sue photos (pictures taken by Lou Perry, and scanned and shared with us by his daughter Sue B.), from September, 1971.

Let's start with this view from just outside the French Market. Being early afternoon, many guests are ready to eat lunch, or at least rest their weary feet. As most of you know, the French Market closed forever (on February 16, 2023), to be transformed into "Tiana's Palace". I suppose it makes sense to make changes to the park so that "Tiana's Bayou Adventure" (formerly "Splash Mountain") feels more in theme with the rest of the nearby land. I only hope that the restaurant looks a whole lot better than the concept art that was released online.

The Plaza was busy busy busy, I wonder if this was the last weekend before kids had to return to school? It looks like a beautiful day though, warm and sunny, not a cloud in the sky. Check out those awesome 70s fashions!

More Plaza fun, with a man who might be a Disneyland cast member near the middle of the picture. He is heading toward Tomorrowland, but looks more "Main Street" or even "Frontierland". Speaking of Frontierland, the girl to the extreme left in the long pink dress looks like she could be Becky Thatcher (well, except that Becky was blond). I love the splash of color from the balloons, and the Omnibus loading up with passengers.

THANK YOU, Lou and Sue!

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Knott's Berry Farm Lenticular Pins

I love lenticular pinback buttons. Some call them "flashers", but I don't have anything to do with people like that. Society gave up on them long ago. Today I have four examples of lenticular pins from Knott's Berry Farm. Hooray!

We'll start with this one, celebrating Fiesta Village, which I assume was relatively new - it opened in 1969. A tiled fountain splashes, while several beautiful seƱoritas dance.

Hey, I DO like Knott's Berry Farm!

Next is this example with artwork from the short-lived Gypsy Camp, which opened in 1971, and only lasted three years before being replaced by 'The Roaring 20s" area. So I would assume that this pin is relatively hard to find. We see colorful gypsy wagons and another dancing woman. (No offense intended to anyone who considers the word "gypsy" to be a pejorative).

I suggested "I am on the fence about Knott's Berry Farm", but as usual my idea was rejected.

This pin was made in Japan, for those of you who wanted to know.

Here's a lenticular pin featuring Seldom Seen Slim and his faithful burro - this sculpture was created by Claude Bell, and was seen for years at the corner of Beach Boulevard and La Palma. I am not clear as to whether it was moved to another location, or if it has mysteriously vanished from public view.

"I was there!"

And here's a variant, Seldom Seen Slim sure gets seen on a lot of pins. This time he is exiting stage right (our left).  It looks like he is standing on a t-bone steak, which is something that I hardly ever do.

Yes, yes, I know you were there, what do you want, a parade??

I hope you have enjoyed today's lenticular pins!

Monday, June 26, 2023

Nice Castle, November 1957

It's always nice to find those rare and precious views of Disneyland, showing some previously-unknown corner of the park. But sometimes it is perfectly nice to have a good photo of Sleeping Beauty Castle from the 1950s (November, 1957 in today's case).

Like this one! Bright and clear, vivid sunshine, blue skies with picturesque clouds; everything is as neat as a pin and as tidy as my grandmother's living room (that's saying something). I love the splashes of color, like that lady's red coat, or the candy-striped ice cream cart to the right, or the yellow on the ticket booth seen through the castle archway. Even the couple to the left are wonderful (Frank Sinatra and Audrey Hepburn?).

Our happy family stopped to pose beneath the portcullis (or near enough). Little did they know that their popcorn boxes would become sought-after collectibles 50+ years later. Through the archway we can see the Carrousel and just a bit of Merlin's Magic Shop, back when it was that interesting greenish color!


Sunday, June 25, 2023

Sunday Snoozles™

Well well well. What's all this then? A pair of Snoozles? Very irregular, very irregular indeed. 

Say, who put that mill on Tom Sawyer Island? Was it Tom and his friends? Did they have a side-hustle selling flour? "Ain't nothin' as fun as milling wheat into flour!". Of course they dressed as river pirates while raking in the money. This photo isn't that bad, just a bit soft I guess. I originally thought it might be from the 1950s, but just look at how overgrown the plants are. I'll bet this is from the 1970s.

Speaking of the 1970s, here's a boring photo of a Submarine (BUT WHICH ONE?) and it made its way through the tropical lagoon on the way to the deepest depths of the ocean. They even go beneath the polar ice caps! I didn't even know that the polar ice wore multiple hats, but nature is wondrous. 

Here's a Disneyland postcard showing the Canoe guides dressed as Indians (with red shirts):

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Universal Studios

Say! Howsabout another look at Universal Studios, probably in the 1950s? This is a followup to a post from nearly a year ago. Hey, I've been busy!

I'd love to know the story behind these photos... this was from before the "Glamor Tram" era, though the studio did still give tours. Here's a nice shot of a piece of a hacienda or western town. Adobe! There are horses and everything. I tried to ID that car, and the nearest I could get was a 1958 Mercury Monterey, but our pal Nanook can tell me where I erred.

I initially was not certain if this batch of slides actually showed Universal Studios, it all looked so unfamiliar compared to later views. But you can see the word "Universal" painted on that light.

It's kind of neat to see so much evidence of filming in these old photos, here's another bunch of lights, perhaps waiting until later in the day to be used?

It took me a while to find out where that house was, but I eventually found the photo below. One Adam-12, we have a naked man on Pico!

What a peaceful little town, that grassy area is just perfect for throwing a Frisbee. I'd like to go eat some bread at the bakery, then go to the tavern, and then make a nuisance of myself at the dance studio.

The useful Bison Archives had these vintage shots telling us that this was all a part of Courthouse Square. Marty!

Another view from the Bison Archives.

This pond looks like it probably has leeches and other slimy things in it. I wonder if it's the same "swamp" that Normal Bates used to hide Marion Crane's car? If the photo is from the late 1950s, "Psycho" has not been filmed yet.

More general clutter. But it's HOLLYWOOD clutter, and that makes it cool! We're outside one of the big soundstages, with more lights, and other junk that I can't quite identify.

Looking through the open door, we can see a huge painted backdrop, apparently for use in a cowboy picture of some sort.

Boy oh boy, the studio really was a beehive of activity back then! So much going on. In the distance that town looks like it has snow on the roofs. Any idea what those white things on the hillsides are supposed to be? At first I thought they were just rocks, but they look like they might be wrapped in cloth. I don't even have a guess. Meanwhile, look at that quality smog, it is some grade-A stuff.

I hope you have enjoyed your visit to Universal Studios!

Friday, June 23, 2023

Two Beauties From the 1950s

Say! Let's go to Disneyland! Set your wrist watch time machines to perhaps 1956 (I'll let you choose the day and month). 

Here we are in Town Square, looking past a horse's... er... rump, toward the Bank of America, which was the first building on East Main Street, and as you can see, a sizable one too. You could go in and get actual B of A traveler's checks. I'm not certain if it was a full-service bank in other ways. Could you open a savings account for little Billy and his sister Sally? Could you get a home loan? My guess is "NO". 

Notice the "white wing" walking to our right, I'm not sure if he is an ice cream vendor or a sweeper. I don't remember noticing the posters to the extreme right before, but then again, this corner of the park was not photographed very often.

We can see gold leaf lettering on the upstair windows, but I'm not sure what is written there. To the right of the lamp post globes, it appears as if the upstairs windows are open. Also notice the souvenir stand, with Keppy Caps, felt pennants, and those conical paper hats.

Meanwhile, over in Tomorrowland... we get this beautiful night shot of the Clock of the World (looks like it was nearly midnight), with the Hall of Chemistry behind it, including that wall lit in sherbet tones of pink, rose, and orange. Love the neon atom! 

Thursday, June 22, 2023

Big Thunder Details

Today's scans are dated "August 1979", and come to us courtesy of the Mysterious Benefactor. These are three unusual detailed views of the props seen from the queue of "Big Thunder Mountain Railroad", which opened on September 2, 1979. So... just a matter of days or weeks after these photos were taken. Big Thunder is a fine example of the queue containing hundreds of tiny details, which an observant guest can enjoy while waiting for their ride.

If you're going to mine for gold, you're going to need shovels. Two shovels, to be exact. They've seen a lot of use, but how about some naval jelly for that rust? And treat those wooden handles with some linseed oil. Proper care of tools greatly extends their usefulness! The buck saw is used for mine timbers, and tough beefsteaks.

When you have your own gold mine, don't leave the boss's kid in charge of the ore carts. He was too busy combing bear fat into his hair (you know how teenagers are), and lost control. Now look at this mess! That is some grade-A ore too, and the gold has probably been bruised. We'll have to throw the whole load out and start fresh. 

Tony Baxter says that he went to "Ore Carts 'R Us" for some of the props, and it's a good thing he did. Here's another example, looking appropriately antique, as if it had been rusting out in the elements for a hundred and fifty years. It looks haunted to me. I can just tell!

THANK YOU, Mysterious Benefactor!

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Two Leftuggies

You saw the title of the post, what do you want from me?? Sorry, I'm just a bit grouchy, it's not you, it's me. Anyway, it's LEFTUGGIE time. Always worthwhile.

Like this first scan, from March, 1961. It's kind of an odd duck, we're behind a popcorn wagon, which is perched up on that custom curb so that the vendor will be 6 inches taller than most people. Intimidation is a great sales strategy. Gramps is hiding behind the tree, he tried to sneak up on the vendor, but had no idea the vendor was once a Marine in the Special Forces. Senses like a cat! As you can see, Gramps is recoiling from the reflexive karate chop that the vendor just meted out. I'm surprised that the vendor's coat is rather subdued, no longer the cheerful red and white stripes from earlier days.

Can anyone help a brother out and ID some of the buildings (all restaurants, I believe) that are to the right of the popcorn wagon?

Next is this weirdly-colored look at the Autopia, circa May 1969. The faded color makes it look older, but there are the Mark VII vehicles to prove that it's post-1968. This is sort of an interesting angle on the Skyway terminal, with several gondolas gliding back and forth. Not to mention the Peoplemover, and Screechy, the Richfield Eagle. EEEEYYYYAAAAHHHH!

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Even More From Keith

Here's another great trio of images from our friend Keith Schad, from a lot of slide scans circa 1971/72 (probably late 1971). These were taken by Keith's father in-law Ed, and they are really nice! 

I love this first one, it looks like it belongs in an issue of "Vacationland" or "Disney News". There's pretty Snow White peeking out behind Dopey's hat, while Grumpy glares behind her. I mean, he's always glaring, that's just his "normal".

Next is this swell picture of Sleeping Beauty Castle. The tree branches hide the famous dent, but you can't have everything. 

And oh boy, I love this picture of an Omnibus waiting at the load/unload zone in the Plaza, with the entrance to the New Tomorrowland behind it. I know that I would be drawn to that futuristic land like a moth to a flame. Any idea what that "double cone" thing is, hanging from the tree branches in the upper left?

Thanks so much to Keith Schad for sharing!

Monday, June 19, 2023

Tomorrowland at Night, September 1971

Oh boy, more night photos from Lou Perry and Sue B.! And this time we're in Tomorrowland, which was one of my favorite places to be in the day, but even more so after the sun went down. Being "A Land on the Move", there was lots of kinetic energy to keep things lively, from the Peoplemover to the Rocket Jets to the spinning Carousel Theater. Wonderful! I'll bet the view from up on the Rocket Jets would be great, let's do that. You can kind of see some of the lit "capsules" that contained animated scenes advertising Goodyear products. Go Go Goodyear!

It appears that the Rocket Jets are in the "up" position, but they mostly vanish in the darkness, unfortunately. Still, don't you wish you were there on that September night??

 Many thanks to Lou and Sue!

Sunday, June 18, 2023


It's Father's Day! And I have some fun photos to commemorate the occasion.

Like this first one, from Ken S! He said it's a picture of me and my Dad taken Christmas time 2017. It was taken by the Main Admissions Supervisor whom I knew from the 1970s and is the wife of a former coworker who is President of the ORH no less.  She still is at the Park and has some 53 years of service. Such a wonderful photo! I wish I had a picture of me and my dad at the park.

Here's a non-Disneyland photo of me with my Dad, I think this might be from when we lived in Illinois. My Dad is playing the part of a human jungle gym. My older brother is to the right, while I am probably seconds away from kicking my dad in the head with my sneakered foot. But I sure look happy!

Saturday, June 17, 2023

Around the USA

I always enjoy a nice vintage look at places around the USA. You never know where we might be! 

Today's first image is from July, 1977 (somebody's summer road trip?), from Missoula, Montana. We're looking northeast on East Broadway (which also happens to be part of I-90). It looks like a charming town. Let's go to 4Bs! I'm not sure what 4Bs was, but I'll bet we could get a nice hamburger there. I often find that photos from this era still look thriving and fun, with Cooper Tires, the Conoco station, and way in the distance, a hotel that may or may not say "Palace Hotel".

Here's a contemporary look using Google Maps' "street view". Wha' happened? It's like somebody squeezed almost all of the fun and charm out of everything. I'm sure Missoula is still a very nice place, but I sure like the 1977 view better.

Next is this photo from Central City, Colorado (from a slide dated "September 1, 1953"), looking north on Main Street. We've been to Central City before, take a look HERE and HERE. Wikipedia says: The historic City of Central, commonly known as Central City, is the county seat and the most populous municipality of Gilpin County. The city population was 779, all in Gilpin County, at the 2020 United States census. The city is a historic mining settlement founded in 1859 during the Pike's Peak Gold Rush and came to be known as the "Richest Square Mile on Earth". 

And why not see what it looks like today, via Google Maps? At first I wondered if this street had been turned into a "no cars" zone, but there is one car just coming around the corner at the other end.