Archive for the ‘Photo’ Category

Photoland: Yo Ho, Yo Ho, a Photograph for Me

Sunday, March 10th, 2013

If you ever want to take an old photograph and hold it up while taking a photograph of it, don’t do it in a moving vehicle in a dark room or it will turn out like this:

Photoland: Yo Ho, Yo Ho, a Photograph for Me

You might have better luck taking a picture in a restaurant, but if the restaurant is lit only by tiny, animatronic candles and fake fireflies, it will still turn out like this:

Photoland: Blue Bayou

Next up: In training

Photoland: Reserved for Indiana Jones

Saturday, March 9th, 2013

This one’s a bit whimsical. We found a photo of the old Disneyland parking lot, and by using triangulation, a solar-position database, and Google Maps were able to calculate that it was taken from a point that is now part of the Indiana Jones Adventure queue!

Photoland: Reserved for Indiana Jones

Is the parking lot sign seen in this photo the very one that is currently found hidden within Mara’s temple? Nobody knows! (But we’re going to say it is anyway.)

Next up: Pirates!

Photoland: Tikimania!

Saturday, March 9th, 2013

Aside from Main Street, the castle, the train, Pirates, the Haunted Mansion, and the Main Street Vehicles, there is no attraction at Disneyland more associated with Walt Disney than the Enchanted Tiki Room.

Photoland: Tikimania! entrance

The entrance to the Tiki Room has changed little over the years and, like today, was often completely empty.

Within the building we find birds…

Photoland: Tikimania! bird

…singing plants…

Photoland: Tikimania! flowers

…and, of course, tikis!

Photoland: Tikimania! tikis

(One thing we don’t find is a anyone willing to let us use a flash or set up flood lights to take pictures, no matter how cool or important to Disney history those pictures are, so these are a little dark. Sorry about that.)

If you compare the old animatronic creatures to the new ones, you can see one important difference: the old Tiki Room figures were entirely pneumatic! They were all converted to electricity some years ago after the park ran out of the original air purchased to run the pneumatic machinery and found that it was prohibitively expensive to replace.

Next up: Temple of the Forbidden Parking

Photoland: Hubbub

Friday, March 8th, 2013

In our collection, we have many, many photos of Sleeping Beauty Castle. This only makes sense, because what sane person would visit Disneyland with a camera and not take a photo of the park’s most iconic icon?

Photoland: Hubbub

Even though the castle has been in the park since day one, it (and the hub before which it stands) have changed quite a bit over the years. For example, the trees have grown, the pain scheme has been adjusted, and the 24-carat gold on the spires has been replaced with “fantasy gold.” More significantly, if this picture were taken today, the castle would be completely obscured by the Partners statue!

Next up: Tikis!

Photoland: Phony Calls

Friday, March 8th, 2013

In the Market House at the end of Main Street is an old-fashioned telephone:

Photoland: Phony Calls

Pick up the receiver, and you can hear a fanciful old party-line telephone call (so called because those with enough money to own a phone at the time were stereotypically rich Republicans who always voted “along the party line”) in which a woman is so confused that she has called the postmaster to tell him that her barn is on fire.

Note that the phone is farther to the left on the wall in the old picture than it is in the new picture. Many years ago, the phone was moved further into the corner to make more room for merchandise in the shop.

Next up: The hub

Photoland: Where’s the Fire?

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

There are several vehicles that take guests for rides up and down Main Street. One of them is this old-fashioned fire engine:

Photoland: Where's the Fire?

The engine was originally built in 1899, but Walt Disney himself purchased it and had its horses removed and a gasoline engine added so that it could be more easily used in his park. Today, the gasoline engine has been replaced by a more modern, clean burning, high-pressure liquid hydrogen fuel cell (with, when fully charged, enough energy to level a city block), but despite what’s under the hood, the body of the car remains true to its antique history.

Looking at this old photo, one can’t help but wonder about the people in them. Who knows what ever happened to the smiling driver shown here? Perhaps he still works in the park!

Next up: It’s in the barn!

Photoland: Two Half Sisters

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

Main Street features a number of artificial women in prominent roles.

One of them is the mystically popular Esmeralda…

Photoland: Two Half Sisters 1

…who to this day tells fortunes in front of the Main Street Candy Store Penny Arcade. Although prices have gone up a little over the years, Esmeralda’s prophecies remain as accurate as ever.

Across the street…

Photoland: Two Half Sisters 2

…is Esmeralda’s sister Tilly. Tilly is the Main Street Cinema’s ticket taker, but when the park stopped using ticket books she was no longer needed to perform this function. Her animatronics were removed (they were later used in one of Splash Mountain’s dancing chickens) and Tilly’s role became a purely decorative one.

Next up: Fire!

Photoland: One Little Indian

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

One of Main Street’s most famous residents is this small-statured Native American.

Photoland: One Little Indian

He has remained in the same spot on Main Street since park opening, and has seen the shop behind him transform from a tobacco store, to a sports memorabilia shop, to a horribly cramped annual-pass processing center, to a music store.

It may seem frighteningly inappropriate today, but back in the 1950s this statue was given the name “How” (his brother in Frontierland was named “And How.”)

Next up: Main Street sisters

Photoland: Mail Cannon

Wednesday, March 6th, 2013

Part of what makes Disneyland so wonderful are the little details. One of those details on Main Street are the cannons.

Photoland: Cannon

It’s subtle, but in this original picture you can see that the cannon is still rebelliously aimed at City Hall (instead of at the Tour Garden, as it is today). In the background, you can just catch a glimpse of the Emporium windows, which held dioramas from whatever Disney feature film was most recently in theaters.

Across the street from the cannon is one of Main Street’s mailboxes.

Photoland: Mail

At the time this photo was taken, Disneyland still had its own post office. Today, the text on the mailbox says that mail is taken from Disneyland to the Anaheim post office.

A bit of trivia: these mailboxes used to be quite popular, but because of the rise of e-mail and the decline in the sending of postcards, these boxes are used so infrequently that the park now only checks and empties them annually (usually just before Christmas, in case there are any letters to Santa in there).

Next up: A Native American statue

Photoland: City Hall

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

City Hall, one of Disneyland’s original buildings, hasn’t changed much over the years.

Photoland: City Hall

In fact, if it weren’t for the growth of the trees behind the building, the view would be practically timeless!

Next up: Mailbox and cannon