Yesterland The Birth of the “E” Ticket
at Disneyland
 
It’s been 50 years since Disneyland’s first summer of the “E” Ticket. The Submarine Voyage, the Matterhorn Bobsleds and the Disneyland-Alweg Monorail all premiered in June 1959. With these attractions, the “E” ticket was born.
Werner Weiss, Curator of Yesterland, July 9, 2009    

The three big attractions of June 1959 launched the “E” ticket, but that doesn’t mean there were only three “E” ticket attractions.

      Disneyland EXCHANGE FOR
CHOICE of ONE
50c “E” ADULT
ADMISSION
    MAIN STREET SF & D RAILROAD TRAINS E
COUPON
 
TOMORROWLAND TWA ROCKET TO THE MOON
SUBMARINE VOYAGE
MONORAIL
SF & D RAILROAD TRAINS
FANTASYLAND MATTERHORN BOBSLEDS
SF & D RAILROAD TRAINS
FRONTIERLAND RAINBOW RIDGE PACK MULES
RAINBOW MT. STAGE COACHES
MARK TWAIN STEAMBOAT
SAILING SHIP COLUMBIA
TOM SAWYER ISLAND RAFTS
SF & D RAILROAD TRAINS
ADVENTURELAND JUNGLE CRUISE
or any other “E” attraction
 

Click the links in this fake “E” ticket for Yesterland articles about the attractions.

There were 14 attractions listed on the “E” tickets of 1959. However, a closer look shows that the Santa Fe & Disneyland Railroad is listed four times because guests could board the trains in four lands. So there were really 11 “E” ticket attractions—three brand new ones and eight that had been promoted from “D” tickets, which had previously been the highest.

When Disneyland opened to the public on July 18, 1955, there were no ticket books. Guests paid one dollar for general admission to the park and 10 to 35 cents per attraction.

Less than three months later—on October 11, 1955—Disneyland began to sell ticket books. Rides were designated as “A,” “B,” or “C” attractions. The best rides required a “C” ticket. The “D” ticket was introduced in 1956; top attractions such as the Jungle Cruise were promoted to “D” status.

In 1959, when the “E” ticket was born, a Disneyland “Big 10” Ticket Book cost $3.50 for adults, $3.00 for juniors, $2.50 for children. It provided one “A” ticket, one “B” ticket, two “C” tickets, three “D” tickets, and three “E” tickets. For a dollar more, guests could buy a “Jumbo 15” Ticket Book, which provided two “A” tickets, two “B” tickets, three “C” tickets, four “D” tickets, and four “E” tickets.

Let’s take a look at vintage photos of the initial 11 “E” ticket attractions, in the order in which they’re listed on the ticket.

SF & D Railroad Trains
SF & D Railroad Trains
 
TWA Rocket To The Moon
TWA Rocket To The Moon
 
Submarine Voyage
Submarine Voyage
 
Monorail
Monorail
 
Matterhorn Bobsleds
Matterhorn Bobsleds
 
Rainbow Ridge Pack Mules
Rainbow Ridge Pack Mules
 
Rainbow Mt. Stage Coaches
Rainbow Mt. Stage Coaches
 
Mark Twain Steamboat
Mark Twain Steamboat
 
Sailing Ship Columbia
Sailing Ship Columbia
 
Tom Sawyer Island Rafts
Tom Sawyer Island Rafts
 
Jungle Cruise
Jungle Cruise
 

Only three of these “E” ticket attractions are now completely gone: TWA Rocket To The Moon, Rainbow Ridge Pack Mules, and Rainbow Mt. Stage Coaches. The others have all changed in some way, but retain the same qualities that made them top attractions in 1959. Arguably, the Submarine Voyage (now the Finding Nemo Submarine Voyage) is the most changed.

The “E” ticket remained the top ticket until Disneyland eliminated attraction tickets completely in 1982. Well, that’s not quite true. In 1963, an “E” ticket had a face value of 60 cents but effectively cost much less when obtained as part of a ticket book. There was one attraction that was “too good” for a mere “E” ticket: Walt Disney’s Enchanted Tiki Room was so revolutionary that guests had to part with 75 cents for adult admission.

Now, please take a look at these four related Yesterland entries:


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Richfield Oil, 1955
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© 2009-2012 Werner Weiss — Disclaimers, Copyright, and Trademarks
 
Updated April 27, 2012.

Photograph of Disneyland & Santa Fe Railroad: Charles R. Lympany, circa 1956, courtesy of Chris Taylor.
Photograph of TWA Rocket to the Moon: Charles R. Lympany, 1959, courtesy of Chris Taylor.
Photograph of Submarine Voyage: Charles R. Lympany, 1959, courtesy of Chris Taylor.
Photograph of Disneyland Alweg Monorail: Charles R. Lympany, 1959, courtesy of Chris Taylor.
Photograph of Monorail Bobsleds: Werner Weiss. 1974.
Photograph of Rainbow Ridge Pack Mules: Charles R. Lympany, 1959, courtesy of Chris Taylor.
Photograph of Rainbow Mt. Stage Coach: Frank Taylor, courtesy of Chris Taylor.
Photograph of Mark Twain Steamboat: Frank Nelson, 1959.
Photograph of Sailing Ship Columbia: Frank Nelson, 1959.
Photograph of Tom Sawyer Island Rafts: Charles R. Lympany, 1959, courtesy of Chris Taylor.
Photograph of Jungle Cruise: Frank Nelson, 1959.