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Colorado Springs Gazette-Telegraph from Colorado Springs, Colorado • Page 54

Colorado Springs Gazette-Telegraph from Colorado Springs, Colorado • Page 54

Colorado Springs, Colorado
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Memories of Mickey Mouse In Walt Disney Archives By ROBERT BALLENGER Copley News Service LOS ANGELES If true that Mickey Mouse wears a Spiro Agnew watch, then it is equally true that David Smith could wear an original Mickey Mouse watch. Smith has a unique advantage in this form of one-upmanship. He is the curator of the newly created Walt Disney Archives on the Disney Studios production lot in nearby Burbank. Although the focal point of the collection is personal papers and business files, the archives are audiovisually oriented, providing facilities for the study of the motion picture product, character merchandises, art work, aw'ards, photographs and other business records. Other articles include original Mickey Mouse watches (first produced in 1932i, books, phonograph records, puzzles, back issues of Walt Disney comic books (what over-30 ex-kid could ever forget Mickey Mouse going up against the a loaf of Donald Duck bread, and are you ready for this one? in linoleum.

There are also prints of more than 600 films that Disney, the old mousetro, er, maestro, made. The archives are located in what was personal suite of offices. Within two to three years. Smith hopes to have the collection moved to its own building. Although the archives are open for business, they have a select clientele.

Right now, according to Smith, use is restricted mainly to persons on company business. But, he adds, qualified scholars and writers can use the facilities to do research on the various facets of empire. The collection contains the original manuscript of often erroneously cited as being the first Mickey Mouse cartoon. Actually, two other cartoons, and were produced before But they had the misfortune to be silent features just when the era of sound entered the motion picture industry. Smith said.

They were shelved while sound tracks were made for them and the first fully synchronized sound film, was released to the public. Mickey Mouse spoke no words in that film. But when he did in succeeding films, his falsetto optimism was spoken by Disney himself. The founder continued to do voice for many years, up until the mid Smith says. Smith has a proper background to be a keeper of records.

He was a reference librarian at the University of California at Los Angeles for five years. He received a degree from the University of California at Berkeley. Smith was also a participant in the internship program at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. At night, when he locks up and goes home just maybe Donald Duck, his three nephew's Huey, Louie and Dewey, Mickey Mouse and his dog, Pluto, Black Pete, Sleeping Beauty, Goofy, the 101 Dalmatians and all the rest come out to romp and live again, just like old times. If that sort of thing happens anywhere, it must happen at the Walt Disney Archives.

I get very many letters from friends or family because, I suspect, they often get any correspondence bearing my return address. However, upon occasion, I do receive a comment, suggestion or observation from someone who reads the part of the paper for which I am responsible. A lady in Amarillo, Texas, once mailed me instructions concerning the preparation of rutabagas. I had mentioned that I intended to eat the dish for the first time if I could locate a restaurant that carried a rutabaga line. The lady mailed the recipe with a note mentioning that her formula was superior to any that could possibly be served in a commercial eatery and I should try it, with her compliments.

More recently I received an unstamped envelope in the mail from a Mrs. B. in one of the area towns. I hastily paid the six cents due because the envelope bore such great resemblance to the one in which the rutabaga recipe and note were enclosed. I opened the correspondence wondering what it was I could have done to inspire someone to write me a letter.

The author apparently was excited about the subject of the letter and in her haste to dispatch it merely overlooked the stamping. The envelope, however, contained only a clipping of a picture of a violinist which bore a penciled notation in the white margin surrounding the subject. it read. left-handed violinist? he No wonder there was no stamp. Many would not have considered the message worth the paper it was mailed within.

But such extensive powers of observation deserve satisfaction and I shall linger on the subject long enough to exculpate myself. Someone flipped a negative. I checked with Charles Ansbacher, director of the Colorado Springs Symphony Orchestra and a friend of the violinist who performed with the group, and he said that the violinist pictured was most assuredly not left-handed. Whoever developed prints from the negative had the negative turned over. 0m mmm II I had to ask Maestro Ansbacher because I did not hear the performance to see for myself whether or not the featured performer is, in fact, left or right handed or, perhaps, even dexterous.

I did meet the individual earlier in the day of his performance, but he gave little indication at that time as to which hand he preferred. He shook, upon introduction, with his is an expected conformity and has nothing to do with handedness. He smoked with his left hand. That is, he delivered the stogie to and from his mouth with the left hand. Still that is no definite indication that he is a southpaw.

If one had to guess which hand the musician favored, the odds would be in favor of the right. Left-handed folks are outnumbered. If that statement seems a bit unwarranted, just try to purchase a left-handed baseball mitt, or a set of left- handed golf clubs. You can find them a number of places, but the choice is seldom as great as that offered right-handed individuals. I am not left handed, but I understand the problem because of a similar one that I have.

I am right eared. Newspaper office telephones are equipped with a hook-appearing device that enables a receiver to rest securely upon the shoulder while one has both hands free for typing or gesturing wildly in accompaniment to a heated conversation. However, in offices where I have been, all the phones had the devices adjusted for the left shoulder and ear. I can hear all right with the left ear, but the receiver comfortable against it ard I have a more difficult time recognizing familiar voices. As serious as conversations can become about the rightness or wrongness of leftness or rightness in hands or ears, the real heated discussions concern wings.

An individual who classifies himself as a right-winger would as soon be called a horse thief as a left-winger and vice- versa, as well. But on the other hand, the subject does not warrant such extensive attentions and for six cents, I would not even have brought it up. THE ODD COUPLE Tony Randall, left, dreams he has died and gone to heaven where he provokes the ire of admittance chief Jack Klubman for claiming the wings offered him were not clean, Friday on ABC. m. IMBs 1 I 3 br KBE I 1 jHWl iljfT i BATTLE ROYAL Walt Disney Archives curator David Smith looks on as Pegleg Pete and Mickey Mouse cross swords in a scene from The 1928 cartoon feature first introduced Mickey to the world.

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