A Bit Of Disney History

Walt Disney History

Am image of Walter Disney with older Mickey Mouse puppet.


December 5, 1901 – Walt Disney, born in Chicago, animator, Mickey Mouse

June 8, 1917 – Walt Disney graduates from Benton High School

January 29, 1920 – Walt Disney starts 1st job as artist making $40 week with Kansas City Slide Co.

May 23, 1922
Walt Disney incorporates his 1st film company Laugh-O-Gram Films

Walt Disney Studios 1922


February 8, 1926
Walt Disney Studios forms

1928 Steamboat Willie

July 29, 1928
Walt Disney’s “Steamboat Willie” is released

November 18, 1928
Walt Disney’s Mickey Mouse debuts in New York in “Steamboat Willie

1932 Dippy_Dawg




May 12, 1932
Goofy, aka Dippy Dawg
1st appears in ‘Mickey’s Revue’ by Walt Disney




May 27, 1933
Walt Disney’s “3 Little Pigs” released




1937 – Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is released.
This is Disney’s first full length animated film




1940 – Walt Disney Productions offers stock,
company goes public to lower debt.
The company also moves its operations from Hollywood to Burbank, CA.



February 7, 1940
Walt Disney’s 2nd feature-length movie, “Pinocchio,” premieres (New York City)

February 23, 1940
Walt Disney’s animated movie “Pinocchio,” released




November 13 1940
Walt Disney’s “Fantasia” released




1941 – Disney animation workers go out on strike
On strike for five months.

A deal to return back to work is finally brokered by federal mediators



October 23, 1941
Walt Disney’s “Dumbo” released




June 14, 1942
Walt Disney’s “Bambi” animated movie is released

1943 – The American Broadcast Company
The network is formed after the FCC rules that NBC must sell one of its two radio networks.
The NBC Blue network is sold to Edward J. Noble for $8 million.
Noble made his money as the creator of Lifesavers candy.



February 3, 1945
Walt Disney’s “3 Caballeros” released





November 12, 1946
Walt Disney’s “Song Of South” released



1947 – Walt Disney testifies in front of the House Committee on un American activities




February 15, 1950
Walt Disney’s “Cinderella” released

1951 – Leonard Goldstein and United Paramount Theaters buy ABC for $25 million



July 28, 1951
Walt Disney’s “Alice In Wonderland” released

1953 Buena Vista Pictures Distribution


1953 – Buena Vista Distribution Company

The company is formed to act as Disney film distributor.




February 5, 1953
Peter Pan opens at Roxy Theater, New York City





October 26, 1954
Walt Disney’s 1st weekly television program, “Disneyland,” premieres on ABC




June 23, 1955
Walt Disney’s “Lady and the Tramp” released

Disneyland with Tinker Bell


1955 – Disneyland opens in Anaheim, CA
theme Park construction at a cost of $17 million.
The ABC television network is partial investor in Disneyland.



1955 – The Mickey Mouse Club
airs on ABC for the first time.
Howard Hughes offers to sell Disney the RKO studio but Walt and Roy decline the deal



July 17th, 1955
Disneyland opens Anaheim, California


January 29, 1959 – Walt Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty” released



1960 Disney buys out ABC’s remaining financial interest in Disneyland




January 25, 1961
Walt Disney’s “101 Dalmatians” released




September 28, 1961
Walt Disney’s movie “Grey Friars Bobby” premieres




December 25, 1963
Walt Disney’s “The Sword in the Stone” is released




August 29, 1964 Walt Disney’s “Mary Poppins” released

1964 Walt Disney awarded Medal of Freedom



September 14, 1964
Walt Disney awarded Medal of Freedom at White House

1965 Epcot center


November 16, 1965
Walt Disney launches Epcot Center.
Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow

1966 Walt Disney passes


December 15, 1966
Walt Disney, animator, dies of lung cancer at 65, put in suspended animation




October 18, 1967
Walt Disney’s “Jungle Book” is released




December 24, 1970
Walt Disney’s “Aristocats” is released


October 1, 1971
Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida opens

1893-1971 Roy Disney



1971 – Walt Disney World opens in Orlando, FL.
December 20, 1971 – Roy Disney passes






April 15, 1973
Walt Disney Store opens





June 22, 1977
Walt Disney’s “Rescuers” released




July 9, 1980
Walt Disney’s “Fox and The Hound,” released

1983 Tokyo Disneyland



1983 – Tokyo Disneyland opens.
The Disney Channel makes its debut on cable television

1984 Walt Disney Productions CEO Michael Eisner

1984 – Michael Eisner becomes the new CEO for Walt Disney Productions.
ABC in a deal with Getty Oil acquires ESPN.
ABC sells 20% of the sports cable network to Nabisco who in turn later deals the stake to Hearst




September 20, 1985
Walt Disney World receives its 200-millionth guest





Disney changes name from Walt Disney Productions to the Walt Disney Company.
Capital Cities Communication, a large broadcasting group, acquires the ABC television network for 3.5 $billion.

1992 Mighty_Ducks_of_Anaheim

1992 – Disney is awarded a National Hockey League
The expansion team to be called The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim make their league debut.

ESPN Radio is launched


April 22 1992  Disneyland Paris, originally Euro Disney Resort opens

A second theme park, Walt Disney Studios Park, opened in 2002. The resort is the second Disney park to open outside the United States, following the opening of the Tokyo Disney Resort in 1983.


1993 Miramax Films

1993 Disney acquires Miramax Films

Disney announces its intent to purchase Capital Cities/ABC for $19 billion.
The deal is the largest media merger in history to the point and the second largest sum of money ever paid for a U.S. company



1996 – Capital Cities/ABC officially becomes part of the Disney Company.
Disney.com is launched. Disney gains ownership stake in Major League Baseball’s California Angels.

Team later changes its name to the Anaheim Angels. Radio Disney is launched


1997 – Knight Rider purchases Disney’s four newspapers for $1.65 billion

  • Kansas City Star
  • Forth Worth Star-Telegram
  • Wilkes Barre Times Leader
  • Belleville News-Democrat

2001 Fox Channel

2001 – News Corp.
Sells Fox Family Worldwide to Disney.
Cable channel later becomes known as ABC Family

2003 anaheim_angels



2003 – Anaheim Angels sold to Phoenix businessman Arturo Moreno for just over $180 million