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Tag Archives: Walt Disney

June 24

June 24, 1938 – Walt Disney Appears on Cover of Family Circle

“Walt Disney talks, mostly of his animals, and the author learns new facts about them.”

On June 24, 1938, Walt Disney graced the cover of The Family Circle magazine. Following the success of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Walt is interviewed about the success of the film and the characters he’s created, ranging from Mickey Mouse to characters from the successful Silly Symphonies series of short films. The cover of the magazine featured a smiling Walt surrounded by images of Donald Duck.

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June 23

June 23, 1938 – Walt Disney Receives Honorary Degree from Harvard

“I am greatly honored to know that the Governing Board of Harvard University have voted to confer upon me the honorary degree of Master of Fine Arts on Commencement Day, June 23rd.”

On June 23, 1938, Walt Disney received an honorary degree from Harvard University, his third honorary degree of the year. With the success of the character Mickey Mouse, as well as the animated feature film Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Disney was honored for, as Harvard’s then-president James Bryant Conant stated, “…[creating] a modern dwelling for the Muses; his hand controls a multitude of elfish animals who charm all humans by their mirth.”

December 27

December 27, 1954 – Walt Disney Appears on the Cover of Time

“To enchanted worlds on electronic wings.”

On December 27, 1954, Walt Disney appeared on the cover of Time Magazine for the second time (coincidentally, the first time was on December 27, 1937, celebrating the release of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs). The cover was painted by Boris Chaliapin, and the cover story featured Walt’s role in shaping television content with his television series, which had premiered nine weeks earlier. The story also touched on Walt’s upcoming dream in development, which would become Disneyland.

August 30

August 30, 1943 – Walt Disney is Awarded the Order of the Aztec Eagle

On August 30, 1943, Walt Disney, along with MGM Studios co-founder Louis B. Mayer, was awarded the Order of the Aztec Eagle, Mexico’s highest honor. Disney received the award from Mexican president Manuel Ávila Camacho, honoring Disney’s efforts to create a strong relationship with Mexico through the Good Neighbor Program. Through this program, Walt and a group of animators, known as “El Grupo,” traveled through South America to research the countries and create animated features and short films. One such output was the film The Three Caballeros, which featured Mexican rooster Panchito as a lead character. This film was the beginning of a long relationship the Disney Studios had with Mexico.

July 26

July 26, 1955 – Walt Disney and Fess Parker Appear on the Cover of Look Magazine

“In thirty years, Walt Disney has made more than 600 films, watched by a billion pairs of eyes.”

On July 26, 1955, the newest issue of Look Magazine was released, featuring Walt Disney and Fess Parker on the cover. This issue featured an eight-page spread about Walt Disney, the characters he brought to life through animation and television, and plans once Disneyland opened. Also featured was a snippet of Fess Parker as Davy Crockett, and his travels around the country promoting the show.

May 24

Posted on

May 24, 1968 – Walt Disney is Posthumously Awarded the Congressional Gold Medal

“Whereas Walt Disney’s life personified the American dream and his rags-to-riches story demonstrated that the United States of America remains the land of opportunity…”

On May 24, 1968, President Lyndon Johnson presented the Congressional Gold Medal to Walt Disney’s widow, Lillian Disney. Walt, who had passed away on December 15, 1966, had previously received the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1964. In the joint resolution to issue the medal, it honored Walt’s contributions, his humanitarian efforts, his help with the war effort during World War II, and “his belief that good will ultimately triumphs over evil.”

April 3

April 3, 1953 – Walt Disney Signs Legal License for Use of His Name

“Disney’s name as used herein, includes all forms and variations of his name…”

On April 3, 1953, Walt Disney signed a legal license that would grant him all commercial uses of his name to Walt Disney, Incorporated; this was the first step in ensuring that Disney would be able to control his films, televisions shows, and eventually the parks. This was a historic event in entertainment history, as this contract paved the way for Disney to become the global empire it is today. This agreement also helped pave the way for Disney to create his own distribution company, Buena Vista Distribution, as RKO was crumbling quickly after being acquired by Howard Hughes.