When Disneyland first opened in 1955, there was a Tobacconist Shop on the east side of Main Street. It closed in 1990 and was replaced by the Music Company, but its Cigar Store Indian is still presiding over Main Street USA.
Most small towns in 1900 America had a tobacco shop so, to be authentic, turn-of-the-century Main Street USA had to have one as well.
Cigar Store Indians or Wooden Indians were used as advertising means to draw men into smoke shops. The idea derives from the fact that North American Indians first introduced tobacco to Europeans. In fact, Christopher Columbus wrote about tobacco in his diary in 1492.
The Tobacconist Shop sold an international selection of cigarettes, pipes, pipe tobacco, cigars, and accessories. They also distributed complimentary match books to guests.
Disneyland has a second Cigar Store Indian over in Frontierland, where he draws attention to the Westward Ho Trading Company, a shop with an emphasis on Disney trading pins.
Effective May 1, 2019, the Disneyland Resort Parks (Disneyland and Disney California Adventure) became 100% smoke free. Also, the Esplanade (the area between the main gates to Disneyland and Disney California Adventure) as well as the Downtown Disney District are smoke free, as are the three hotels of Disneyland Resort: Disneyland Hotel, The Grand Californian, and Disney’s Paradise Pier.
In the early days of Disneyland, smoking was permitted everywhere in the park except on the attractions themselves and in their wait queues. The park brochure at the time stated: “You can put out your cigarette in the ashtrays conveniently located at the entrance to every attraction.” In 1955, 52% of men and 24% of women were smokers, whereas today only about 14% of adults smoke. Walt Disney himself was a heavy smoker who eventually died of lung cancer.
We’ve written two books about our time working – and playing – as Disney Cast Members at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.
If you’d like to follow our daily Disney blog, here’s the link: https://collinsrace1.wordpress.com/
Have a magical day!
Two Disney Sisters