Magic Kingdom – 1971 Home Movie

We have lucked out by continuing to discover films taken in Walt Disney World’s first weeks of operation. This film from November 1971 begins with passenger boarding the ill-fated original trams (which overheated and could not handle the heavy passenger load). We get a very nice early glimpse at the Ticket & Transportation Center and the Southern Seas sidewheeler loading and carrying passengers to the Magic Kingdom. Main Street and Town Square are busy with vehicles,...Read More...

Amazing slides that show a brand new Walt Disney World – October 1971

Another fantastic addition to Brian's Slide Carousel This set of slides labeled Walt Disney World and dated October 1971 came to us by way of an estate sale in Michigan. Because of the date stamp from Kodak we knew the slides were from Walt Disney World’s first days of operation. Thanks to @Gulopine , we think we've narrowed the date down, as he wrote the following to us: "The extreme cloudiness got me wondering. Looking back through...Read More...

Jungle Cruise Frogs Take 3 – 1972 Home Movie

We visit the Magic Kingdom again in its infancy, just a few weeks-old baby, starting in Adventureland with shots of the Swiss Family Robinson Treehouse.  Chip 'n Dale meet our young protagonists in Adventureland Plaza outside the Enchanted Tiki Room. They seem to be the only two people (and two Chipmunks) in the park. We walk through the Treehouse (note the glimpse at 2:15 of a piece of construction equipment!) before we board the Jungle Cruise...Read More...

Podcast Episode 11: First Things First

This month we go back to many firsts at Walt Disney World. George & Becky Miranda from Ohio join us to discuss opening day at The Magic Kingdom. They both have an amazing first hand account from visiting the park on opening day along with a great collection of photos (You're going to want to load these up and look at them while you listen to them describe that first day: https://www.flickr.com/photos/georgelmiranda/albums/72157658664679871). We then jump into…Read More...

Podcast Episode 1 – Planning for Tomorrow

Welcome to the First Episode of the Retro Disney World Podcast.  We have had lots of great feedback thus far, we hope you enjoy the first official episode!.   Introductions The regular crew is all here, Todd, Brian, How & JT are all present and accounted for. Main Topic This first episode takes us to the early days of Tomorrowland, or the small area with two attractions that was referred to as Tomorrowland in '71. How...Read More...

A pristine Magic Kingdom from Nov ’71 – Restored Home Movie footage

@BrianPMiles was nice enough to send me a reel of film that he obtained from a garage sale. The film canister said "Florida November '71" and he took the chance that there was some WDW footage on it. Well his curiosity paid off, sandwiched between visits to Silver Springs and other Florida attractions was pristine footage of the Magic Kingdom in November 1971 - at this point this is the earliest post-opening film of WDW that...Read More...

Rare Personal WDW Construction Photos by “Bud” Benedum

Kelly Gallagher, granddaughter of the late Wilbert Charles "Bud" Benedum (pictured to the left) has given us permission to showcase the photos that her grandfather personally took during the construction of WDW. Mr. Benedum was the Chief Engineer of construction for the monorail at the time and he documented the construction of WDW through many wonderful photos. This is just the first photos that Kelly will be sharing with us over the next few weeks.Read More...