Security Time on the Island

Photos and article by Dave Metz

My favorite time when working in Security at Disneyland in 1970 was when I was based on Tom Sawyer Island.

The Island was fabulous – with my main job of keeping people from trying to cross the Pontoon Bridge the wrong way and possibly falling off, and keeping kids from smoking grass in Injun Joe’s Cave.

My favorite time when working in Security at Disneyland in 1970 was when I was based on Tom Sawyer Island.

The Island was fabulous – with my main job of keeping people from trying to cross the Pontoon Bridge the wrong way and possibly falling off, and keeping kids from smoking grass in Injun Joe’s Cave.

I also was asked to pose with guests for their Polaroid Instamatic photos. My favorite duty was to occasionally make a tour of the area around The Burning Cabin to ensure that kids had not managed to get through the fence to the back lot.

While in the area, I also had some (quite unauthorized) fun. I would stand totally still in my cavalry officer’s costume as if I has just arrived on the scene of the massacre, and would await the passage of the Mark Twain Riverboat or the Sailing Ship Columbia which would always have kids hanging over the rails watching the Burning Cabin.

I would wait until only one kid was watching and I would – just like a Disney Audio-Animatronics figure – turn, look right at him, waive and grin. The kid would always tug at a friend or his parent and say “Look at the cavalry guy!” But when that happened I would freeze until the friend or parent looked away, whereupon I would again have some fun by again acting the role. Of course, I had to be careful doing kind of thing or I would have been chewed out by a supervisor. But someplace out there, there are people that remember the cavalry trooper who grinned and waved at just them – and no one else.”

Do you have a story to tell? We love telling stories, and particularly ones from you. It could be of your time as a Cast Member – what you did, your experiences and even some fun anecdotal things. Of course, we want photos with the stories. Email: secretary@disneylandalumni.org.

February 19th, 2021