Disneyland Resort opened to thousands of ecstatic Guests on July 17, 1955. Walter Elias Disney wanted a place where children and adults alike could have fun, together.
Related: Guests Stroll Main Street, U.S.A., as Walt Disney, Leave Guests Speechless
A lot has changed in nearly 68 years. Rides have come and gone, new characters have been introduced, and ticket prices have definitely increased. But the Southern California Disney Park has never forgotten that it all started with a mouse.
As The Walt Disney Company brings Disney100 celebrations to Disneyland Park, Downtown Disney, and Disney California Adventure, many Disney Parks fans are reminiscing about the early days of Disneyland Resort. But not everyone was pleased by what they found in the Disneyland archives.
TikToker Kate (@disneycicerone) shared footage of celebrity Guests riding Autopia on Disneyland Park’s opening day. “I love so many things about Disney history, but not this,” she wrote:
I love so many things about Disney history, but not this 🤦♀️ The center rail was added later when people were spinning out and ramming each other so much it became a safety issue, despite the 25mph police cars policing the track. The whole purpose of Autopia was to teach kids how to be responsible drivers with so many freeways being built at the time. It was also at that time that Disney got 160 newly-designed Mark VI cars without the wraparound aluminum frame since they were no longer necessary with the center rail in place. #greenscreenvideo #autopia #vintagedisney #retrodisney #disney #disneyhistory #disneyland #tomorrowland #franksinatra #sammydavisjr #disneyparks #womendrivers #disneysecrets #retrotv #classictv #disneylandopening #tomorrowlandspeedway #artlinkletter #disneytok #disneytiktok
As famous Guests like Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis, Jr. sped by on the car simulator, the broadcast host shared facts about the all-new ride. Then, he said something shocking.
“And, of course, the women drivers are given a little special space just as they are on the highways,” the host remarked.
“What?!” Kate exclaimed before cutting the video off abruptly.
Many commenters were equally shocked by the comment aired live on ABC in 1955. “Felt awkward ‘liking’ this— felt it necessary to articulate I *like* that you shared this, not the ridiculous ‘wisdom’ he shared,” said @lauryn.dupree.
“Ohhh the past,” @glitterpinkparks wrote. “It would be funny if it wasn’t so sad.”
Others chastised Kate for being offended by a statement made decades ago when societal thought hadn’t evolved.
“Combing through history to publicly condemn popular ideologies at the time is low hanging fruit,” @ricardomogoaceved argued.
“It’s just a joke,” said @haiybay. “No one can take a joke these days.”
But Kate fired back. “It’s an extremely misogynistic joke that belittled women. I understand it was the 50s, it just took me off-guard,” she responded.
What do you think about this Autopia joke made on Disneyland Resort’s opening day in 1955?