So a couple weeks ago, we were going through the attic and we found something we hadn't seen in about fifteen years. This unmarked cardboard box contained several old film reels of my great-great-grandfather telling the stories behind a number of very old photos he'd taken over the years. This was a thrill in and of itself, but we were even more excited when we found most of those original photos in the box with the reels. (It would have been even cooler if the cameras had been, too!)
Now, my great-great-grandfather, Earl, was something of an adventurer who spent a lot of time globetrotting when he was young, and a lot of the locales he visited would later provide inspiration to Walt and the original Imagineers who built Disneyland, which is why I've posted this thread in this particular forum. (Please don't move it! )
Anyway, what follows is a partial transcript of Grandpa Earl's explanations. Obviously, it takes a while to type all this up and scan the photos and everything, but I've tried to provide the most relevant and interesting highlights.
Now, this was the first view I ever saw of the mines. We came over the hill from, uh, Rainbow Ridge, I think, and this thing was just...enormous. This is probably my favorite photograph from the whole time I was in Utah.
The town was busy, too. The miners had a - it was a, a locomotive that went back and forth from the mine. Actually, I think you can see some of the tracks in this picture - and there was a roundhouse back behind the barber's shop, there. There was some funny stories about that train, but I never saw anything out of the ordinary. [laughs]
We did have a few exciting, uh, incidents. This was a goat that got ahold of some of the dynamine we were using for blasting near the Spiral Butte, who - that just about blew us to bits, really. [laughs] I don't know what I was thinking taking a picture. This was right before Tom Fairchild sneaked up on him from behind and grabbed him.
Around when I left Utah, I did some traveling on the rivers. This was actually the last time I saw Big Thunder until...19 - 1948, must have been. I missed this real gentle howl that the wind made in one of the canyons on the north side, like a coyote, but sweeter-sounding. You don't forget things like that. That ship sure was nice, though. Why, you'd swear it was powered by something other than that big paddle it had in back - you can't see it here, of course.
Oh - then I ended up in the South, a few different places. This was a studio where I met a professor with these big - big eyes, taught me a lot about photography. You can just see in the back, there, part of this hill they had, Chickapin Hill, they called it. There was a local legend about a fox that lived up in this stump at the top. I think that's in the next photo.
Yeah, there it is. I never saw that fox, either. [chuckles]
Now, while I was in the South, I never lived in New Orleans for any real amount of time, but I did spend a few weeks there. Took a train, spent some time with Bart [his brother]. This was the station. I think this picture - I took it, must have been 'cause of the water tank, 'cause I couldn't figure out how the, the supports on the bottom went. You see? They went right through one another. [laughs] I never knew wood could do that.
Okay...I think I'm gonna have to do the rest in a separate post. I'm looking at a few photos from his stay in New Orleans, and probably a few from Europe and Asia, too. Stay tuned!
By the way, this is what Earl looked like when he was a little younger than I am now. People tell me I look a lot like he did, but I'm not sure I see the resemblance. ::shrug::
More to come in a while!