Friday, February 13, 2009

Frontierland Transportation: The Stagecoach

Back in the good ol’ days, Main Street wasn’t the only area of the park that had a variety of vehicles to choose from when you wanted to tour the attractions without walking. Frontierland had at least THREE (count 'em THREE) types of transportation with wheels (not counting the paddle-wheel of the Twain of course!) that you could give your insides a good rattling with. Today we focus on the Stagecoach. Called the Disneyland Stage Lines, guests could either ride shotgun up top with the driver, or crammed into the coach itself. This early view of the Arizona coach also features what appears to be a friendly Indian. Could there be any other kind at Disneyland? Here’s a closeup of the coach:

This previously shown photo is of the California coach, which features art of the Santa Barbara Mission on the coach door:

And for you doubting Thomases, here’s a view of the actual mission:

The little blonde girl sitting shot-gun does not look happy at all; must have been a bumpy trip on this July 18, 1955 day:

A 1955 view of the Arizona coach, complete with a close-up of the door. Looks like the little girl in the background is being talked into getting onto the coach...she doesn’t appear to want any part of these shenanigans!

And here’s a 1956 photo of the newfangled contraption that helps guests get on top of the Stagecoach:

Don’t even think that these Stagecoaches and other crazy Frontierland vehicles were all fun and games. Take a gander at these next two photos:

The Stagecoaches often tipped over, especially when the horses got a little skittish; adding breakaway harnesses didn’t solve the problem either. Instead, guests were left stranded while the horses wandered off to “greener” pastures. See more Disneyland Frontierland photos at my website.


Vintage Disneyland Tickets said...

Wonderful post, thanks for all the great photos! The last two pics of the busted up stagecoach are weird, I wonder why they were taken? The July 18, 1955 photo is extra special, thanks!

Katella Gate said...

I think the reason the Santa Barbara mission was painted on the stage coach was because in the early part of the 20th century, that mission was widely used in commercial art as an icon for California.

Of course, when Hollywood Bowl and Disneyland itself came along, it got bumped down lower in the pecking order.

Anonymous said...

Yep, them coaches was mighty narrow. Once they got top-heavy, well... Look out, Aunt Susan!