Friday, August 7, 2020

Walt Disney's "Disneyland On The Air" - 1955

When my brother and I were very young, we had quite a few "Little Golden Books." The title of one of them was, Walt Disney's "Disneyland On The Air." I loved that book and have kept it to this very day, along with many other childhood books.

Years later, while shopping in a "comic book and collectibles" store, not too far from Disneyland, I came across the same book. However, this was an older "Mickey Mouse Club Book" version, with a different cover. I really liked the graphics on the older cover, so I ended up purchasing it. Here is that original cover:

The original owner's name was written on the inside. I wonder if "Johnny" ever thought about, or missed his childhood book, once he grew up?

I've scanned every page of the book, so here it is in it's entirety!

I loved all of the artwork in this book, but especially these two pages, showing Disneyland's Opera House and Town Square. Notice how the Horse-drawn Street Car is depicted as being completely enclosed.

I also loved this artwork, with the Disneyland skyline used as a backdrop. Notice how the silhouette of the "rocket" on the far left, matches the one on the cover, but neither one of them really matches Tomorrowland's TWA rocket.

The back cover listed other "Mickey Mouse Club Books," which were also available.

Here is the cover of the reissued version of the book. This is my personal copy, from childhood.

The back cover was now promoting "Golden Books."

And the inside of the back cover included a list, of other available Golden Book titles.

I hope everyone enjoyed this vintage children's book!

We will end this post with a few more "Little Golden Book" and "Mickey Mouse Club Book" titles, which are also from my childhood collection. These are just the Disney ones. I have others, including Yogi Bear, Huckleberry Hound, The Flintstones, The Night Before Christmas, and more. I may scan some of these for future posts.


K. Martinez said...

Always loved the illustrations and art in The Little Golden Books. I have "Mickey Mouse and his Space Ship", "Cinderella's Friends" and "Dumbo". The only Disneyland related Little Golden Book I have is "Little Man of Disneyland". Never knew "The Aristocats" had their own Little Golden Book.

The Mickey Mouse Club illustrations on the end inside cover are great.

Not sure if you've seen "Perri" the film. It's the only Walt Disney True-Life Fantasy as opposed to True-Life Adventure. More were planned, but only "Perri" was released. It's featured in the True-Life Adventure DVD tin sets.

Thanks for another great post, TM!

K. Martinez said...

I just noticed some of the books say "A Mickey Mouse Club Book" instead of "A Little Golden Book" and you mention it in your post. Those would be "Walt Disney's Disneyland on the Air", "Walt Disney's Donald Duck and Santa Claus" and "Walt Disney's Perrie and her Friends.

Were they still under the Little Golden Book umbrella or actually independent books produced by Disney? Just curious.

TokyoMagic! said...

Ken, as an adult, I have seen that "Little Man of Disneyland" book posted online, but I didn't know anything about it when I was a kid. The "Aristocats" book is the last Little Golden Book that my brother and I received, as kids. I believe it is dated 1970, the same year as the film's release.

I have seen "Perri," but it has been many years. I have it and I need to watch it again. ;-)

I was going to try to explain the situation with the difference between the "Little Golden Books" and the "Mickey Mouse Club Books" in my post, but it was kind of confusing. The original version of "Disneyland On The Air" has Simon and Schuster, Inc. listed as the publisher. The newer version has the publisher listed as Western Printing and Lithographing Company. It appears that S & S Inc. sold their interest in the books to WPL Co. in 1958. I think that might have been when they stopped using the "Mickey Mouse Club Book" moniker and put all of their children's book titles under the "Little Golden Book" name.

K. Martinez said...

Thanks for the explanation on the differences between the two types of books. That makes sense what you said about consolidating them all under one brand name.

Andrew said...

Thanks for the fun post about Little Golden Books, TM! My grandmother has a bunch, but the ones that I remember most are "Doctor Dan" and "Nurse Nancy" (473), as those two came with actual Band-Aids attached inside the cover, and the original Band-Aids are still there on my grandmother's copies, decades after she purchased them! I also saw that the library had one of the new-issue copies of "Little Man of Disneyland," so I had to get that. Cool books!

DrGoat said...

Wow. The illustrations are just beautiful. My Uncle illustrated a few Golden and Whitman children's book back then including my namesake, Dr. Goat. We've kept a lot of the original illustrations used in them and had them framed. They look great on the wall.
Only remember having Dumbo and unfortunately it didn't survive my childhood.
Thanks Tokyo, just grand stuff.

TokyoMagic! said...

Andrew, that's pretty neat that your grandmother has a collection of Little Golden Books. And I did not know that any of them came with anything, such as "Bandaids." The Disneyland books should have come with a ticket to get into the park! ;-)

I also didn't know that they had re-released the "Little Man of Disneyland" book. Maybe I'll have to look for that one!

TokyoMagic! said...

DrGoat, I forgot that your uncle was a children's book illustrator! I am glad to hear that your family still has some of his original work. That is so cool, to have that kind of family legacy!

Maybe I should try to get the Dumbo book scanned and posted in the future!

"Lou and Sue" said...

TokyoMagic! Isn’t it amazing how books from our childhood bring back wonderful, happy feelings! I kept a few childhood books, but did buy one on EBay recently - to replace an old favorite that I had given away, years ago. It was one where Donald Duck visits Disneyland, but I don’t remember the title, offhand (old age).

DrGoat, your uncle’s book is still popular! A number of copies recently sold on Ebay.

Fun post, TM!

TokyoMagic! said...

Sue, I had to look on Ebay, to see if I could find the book you were talking about. There is a Little Golden Book with the title, "Donald Duck in Disneyland." Actually, there appears to be two with that title, but I think as with my "Disneyland on the Air" book, it was probably the same book, but with two different covers. One of them was published in 1955 and shows Donald and his nephews in a hot air balloon over DL and the other one was published in 1960 and shows Donald and his nephews in front of the Matterhorn, Monorail and Submarine Lagoon.

I'm glad that you were able to "reacquire" the book you had as a child. And I agree with is amazing how these books can bring back so many wonderful happy memories!

Major Pepperidge said...

Like so many other people, I absolutely love the illustrations in Little Golden Books - it’s amazing how many Disney artists contributed to those. Once in a while an original painting from one of these books shows up in an auction, it sure would be neat to own one.

Thank you for scanning “Disneyland On The Air”, a book that I have meant to buy about 100 times, and yet I never actually did it. And I’ve never seen the interior either, so this is awesome. The street car on the Opera House spread looks like it has glass windows? And as you pointed out, the rockets don’t match the real Tomorrowland rockets, a sure sign that the illustrations were done before the park was actually built.

Your personal copy is in much better shape than the other one, you took good care of your books! I am very persnickety about my books, I hate to lend them to people because they always come out dog-eared and ruined. My friend told me that he loaned his copy of “The Hobbit” to a girl, and when she returned it, it had clearly gotten completely soaked with water at some point, the book was twice as big as it originally was. When he asked what happened, she said, “ I didn’t think you would notice”. ?!?

Thanks also for the scans of those other BLB covers, especially Mickey Mouse and his Space Ship. I wonder if that cover was drawn by Floyd Gottfredson? He started doing that weird thing with Mickey’s mouth.

TokyoMagic! said...

Major, that would be amazing to own an original piece of Little Golden Book artwork. During one of my visits to Tokyo Disneyland, their Disney Gallery was having an exhibit of Little Golden Book art. I don't think any of it was for sale. I did buy some some "school folders," that had the reproduced artwork for the Big Golden Books (remember those?) of Peter Pan and Alice In Wonderland. I have both of those books as well, from childhood.

I don't think I've heard the name Floyd Gottfredson, but I'm going to look him up! After seeing these books for the first time in many years, I was definitely noticing that very stylized "Mickey" on the book you mentioned. Of course, I didn't notice that type of thing as a child. It's too bad they don't give credit to the artists who illustrated these. I did notice that some of the books give credit to the writers. Didn't Mary Blair do some illustrations, for some Disney children's books?

I have had bad experiences loaning things, as well! I had a music book (I used to play piano) containing all of the songs from The Wizard of Oz. Some childhood friends (brothers) wanted to borrow it, because they both played the trumpet. When they returned it to me, the book had a big tear down the front cover. I asked what happened (because of course, they didn't mention it) and they said, "Oh, that happened when we were fighting over it!" After other similar situations like that, I learned not to loan things out!

"Lou and Sue" said...

TokyoMagic! FYI: I looked on Ebay to find the exact name of the book (since my copy is now boxed away somewhere) - it's "Donald Duck Goes To Disneyland" - and Donald is riding on a horse, on the cover.

TokyoMagic! said...

Sue, that's interesting! I wonder if it could be the same book as the other two, but with a third cover? Oh, maybe not, since the title uses the word "Goes," instead of "In." While looking around on ebay, I have been noticing that the Little Golden Books were often re-released at later dates, with different covers. But from what I've seen so far, they do seem to retain the same title. I also saw a book by the "Whitman" company, with the title, "Donald Duck in Frontierland." That cover has Donald driving the Frontierland Stagecoach.

Stu29573 said...

I have the older version of Disneyland on the Air! I picked it up at an antique store in Texas...

TokyoMagic! said...

Stu, COOL! :-)

Anonymous said...

Tokyo, these are very nice indeed. I have many of my childhood books, which we read to our children.

I dont' know if you saw the thread, but I scanned a couple of books bought at Disneyland, 20K under the sea, and the Swiss Family Robinson. If you want the link, please email me.


TokyoMagic! said...

JG, I'm glad to hear that you saved your childhood books, especially the ones purchased at Disneyland. I think I missed the link for those two books. Did you post it over on Gorillas Don't Blog?

JG said...

Hello Tokyo, just saw your response.

I did not post the link, I emailed to those who requested it.

Since I have your email, I will send it to you. I think you will enjoy them.

Also, here is a link to a little remembrance that I wrote for Daveland about the Disneyland Main street bookstore, where the books were bought.

When I see the scans you posted, I get chills recognizing the endpaper and back cover patterns. Thank you for posting these.


TokyoMagic! said...

JG, I received your email with the links! Thanks for sharing those! I also enjoyed reading your recollections of the old shops on Main St. I have a very clear memory of the bookstore, when it still had the candle shop right next to it. I think the current bookstore sits in the same location as the old bookstore and the candle shop, combined.

Thanks again, for sharing!