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Source: boingboing


Cory Doctorow & Co. got their  hands on the original prospectus for Disneyland (in digital format). He explains how this all came to be here.

These were even “pitch-books” used by Roy and Walt Disney to raise the money to build Disneyland:

“Roy Disney — the Disney brother who controlled the company’s finances – — didn’t like the idea of Disneyland at first. Walt Disney poached the best talent from the studios to help him flesh out his idea for a new kind of amusement park, eventually winning over Roy, who helped him raise the $17 million it took to build Disneyland.The first animator Walt took into the project was the legendary Herb Ryman.

Over the course of a weekend in 1953, Walt and Herb drew the storied first map of Disneyland, as pictured here. An additional eight typed pages of description and sales copy were added to these pages and the resulting “brochure” was used as an unsuccessful pitch session that Walt and Herb conducted for three different New York bankers.”

It is quite an amazing story.


Category: Digital Media, Travel, Venture Capital

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2 Responses to “Start Up Idea: Disneyland (Prospectus)”

  1. rd says:

    Today they would raise that money easily from Private Equity firms but would need to give up all of their rights….

  2. 873450 says:

    Another unsuccessful Disney pitch:

    How Sleepy Old Florida Turned Megastate
    July 3, 2005 by Joy Wallace Dickinson, Sentinel Staff Writer

    “In his big new book about modern Florida, historian Gary Mormino describes a phone conversation in the early 1960s between two titans on the state’s landscape — Ed Ball of St. Joe Land Co., then the most powerful man in Florida, and Walt Disney, whose legacy Mormino describes as a 10-point earthquake on our sandy soil.

    The story goes that when Disney was pondering where to buy land in Florida, he put in a call to Ball. St. Joe was the largest landowner in the state.

    The irascible Ball, who no doubt focused more on directing the duPont family fortunes in Florida than he did on American popular culture, didn’t recognize the name Disney and asked a junior clerk to research the matter.

    When Walt called back, Ball still had only a fuzzy idea who he was, and he abruptly ended the conversation. “We don’t deal with carnival people,” he supposedly grumped into the phone.

    It’s one of those “if things had gone a bit differently” stories, in this case suggesting that if Ball hadn’t been Ball, Walt’s seismic shock might have landed up in the Panhandle, near Port St. Joe.

    Instead, Central Florida was at the epicenter of the historic tidal wave that forever divided Florida’s story into the B.D. and A.D. (before and after Disney) epochs.”