Happy Halloween! More Haunted Mansion Fun Facts!
Happy Halloween TMSM’ers! Boo to You!! I truly hope have you enjoyed our extra dose of spooky themed articles we had going for the month of October, it’s been fun for us too. Since today is October 31st, and the last day of TMSM’s 31 Days of Halloween, I thought we close out with more fun facts of the beloved Haunted Mansion. Some of these I mentioned before, but I’ll recap so they’re all together. The Haunted Mansion is a fan favorite, and a favorite of mine too, so here some little tidbits from the attraction! Enjoy and Happy Halloween to you all!
At the Haunted Mansion in Disneyland, pay attention to the organ in the ballroom scene inside the mansion. It’s the original prop from the 1954 Disney film 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. It used to belong to Captain Nemo, but now it’s playing for ghosts who are permanently partying. It worked in the scene so well that an exact replica was made for the Mansion at Disneyworld and Tokyo Disneyland.
*Photo from DoomBuggies*
The Knight in Shining Armor Statue that stands near the beginning of your journey in your Doom Buggy, actually used to MOVE when the ride first opened! Back in the day, a Cast Member used to wear the armor suit, and follow guests in their Doom Buggies. It wasn’t this way for too long, and eventually the Knight was just a stand still prop, but he makes you wonder sometimes, doesn’t he?
Is the Haunted Mansion really haunted? If so, why? Well, for years there have been urban legends of people taking the ashes of their dearly departed loved ones into the Haunted Mansion in both Anaheim and Orlando. Of course, Disney doesn’t allow this, but sources say it does indeed happen from time to time! Creepy! Ash dumping happens so often that Disneyland had to purchase a special HEPA vacuum that can pick up ashes, but also little tiny bone fragments that are often left behind after a cremation. Allegedly…
The Tombstones guests can read while waiting in line at the Haunted Mansion read as follows:
Rest in peace, brother Huet. We all know you didn’t do it.
R.I.P., good friend Gordon. Now you’ve crossed the river Jordan.
Master Gracey laid to rest. No mourning, please, at his request. Farewell.
At peaceful rest, he’s brother Claude. Planted here beneath this sod.
Here lies good ol’ Fred. A great big rock fell on his head.
Here rests Lawful R. Bender. He rode to glory on a fender.
Dear departed brother Dave, He chased a bear into a cave.
Here lies a man named Martin. The lights went out on this old Spartan.
Dear sweet Leota, beloved by all. In regions beyond now, but having a ball.
The names on the stones are all paying homage to different Imagineers who had a hand in the creation of the Haunted Mansion. For example, “Dear departed Brother Dave” is Dave Burkhart, who built the model of the Mansion; “Brother Claude” is Claude Coats, designer of the track layout; “Grandpa Marc” is Marc Davis, one of the main concept designers; “Dear sweet Leota” is Leota Toombs, a Disney artist who was also the model for the head in the crystal ball. Don’t forget Master Gracey, which is a huge nod to Yale Gracey, one of the main players in creating the Haunted Mansion.
In California, there was an overly frightening ghost in the attic for a very brief time period. He was a thin, skeletal looking man holding a hatbox, and his head would periodically disappear from his body and appear in the box he was holding instead. They had problems getting it to work consistently, though, and elected to remove him from the attic altogether. To make it even MORE creepy, no one seems to know whatever became of the Hatbox Ghost! Where is he? Either Disney insiders really don’t know, or they’re not telling, which adds to the mystery.
There are several “Hidden Mickeys” throughout the Haunted Mansion. The ballroom scene features one of the most famous — a plate and a pair of saucers on the dining table form Mickey’s familiar silhouette.
THANK YOU for reading along for TMSM’s 31 Days of Halloween! We truly appreciate it! Now, lets see what November holds, we hope you join us!