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Sherman J. Royce – Disneyland

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The Royce Family at Disneyland: Mouseketeers and More
Sherman J. Royce, circa 1955 – 1958, 16mm, color, silent, 2:41
Location: Disneyland, Anaheim, California
Shown at Home Movie Day Ojai, California

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Royce Family Visits to Disneyland Through the Years
Sherman J. Royce, circa 1955 – 1960, 16mm, color, silent, 11:32
Location: Disneyland, Anaheim, California
Shown at Home Movie Day Ojai, California

Film scans by Modern Videofilm (Burbank, CA)
Films courtesy of The Academy Film Archive (www.oscars.org/film-archive)
Copyright: The Academy Film Archive
Thanks to: Cindy Wright, Christopher Royce, Ph.D., May Haduong and Lynne Kirste

About the Films

My two sisters and three brothers and I were blessed with red hair and the best grandparents anybody could ask for:  Sherman and Marjorie Royce.  Our lives were greatly enriched by their unconditional love, the many gifts of their time, and the fun trips that were faithfully recorded by Grandpa Royce on 16mm color movies and Kodachrome slides.

Grandpa was an irrigation pump salesman, but he began taking photographs when his first grandchild was born during World War II and his son was in the Army Air Corps in the South Pacific.  He was able to get film because he had a friend in the movie industry.

Sherman and Marjorie Royce

Sherman and Marjorie Royce, 1965

Our first trip to Disneyland was in the fall of 1955, when the youngest grandchild was a babe in arms.   Those trips continued until around 1960.   It’s interesting to watch oneself “grow up” at Disneyland!  My older sister and I were very excited to have a new place to go, as we had already enjoyed many trips to the other entertainments within reasonable driving distance from the grandparent’s home in Glendale.

The older five of us had faithfully watched the original Mickey Mouse Club show and had become great fans of those original Mouseketeers and Jimmy Dodd.  Needless to say, we were thrilled to see them at Disneyland a few times and to get their autographs.

Grandma Royce was able to quietly and firmly keep all of us under control because we greatly loved and respected her.  She gave us the thrill of our lives when she sent us complete Mickey Mouse Club outfits, including the tap shoes for the girls.  I have the thank you letter Mother wrote to Grandma about those beloved outfits (dated Aug. 29, 1957, telling her “we went wild” when we saw them).  My fondest memory is the movie Grandpa took of my sisters and I doing our Mickey Mouse Club routine in those outfits in our backyard in Bakersfield.

Sherman Royce with movie camera

Marjorie and Sherman Royce (with movie camera), 1976

I also have Mother’s letter to Grandma and Grandpa, dated February 9, 1958, where she talks about wanting to get tickets to Disneyland for my brother’s and my birthdays in March.  I wonder how much those tickets cost? The oldest ticket book I have is from 1968 when my husband and I went there soon after we started dating.  That booklet cost $6.  We even still have one of the coveted “E” tickets. My how things have changed!  It’s nice to relive the “good old days” in Grandpa’s wonderful movies.

— Cynthia Royce Wright