THE OPENING OF UNION STATION
In honor of Union Station‘s 75th Anniversary, Metro and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, in cooperation with the family of Ward Kimball, have restored the only known footage of the historic opening. Documented in the home movie, the parade drew half a million spectators to downtown Los Angeles.
The silent 6-minute color film clip features train engines, vintage automobiles, and spectators from the parade, which took place on May 3, 1939. The home movie was shot by legendary Disney animator Ward Kimball, creator of numerous classic Disney characters, including Jiminy Cricket in Pinocchio, Tweedledee and Tweedledum in Alice in Wonderland, and Lucifer the Cat in Cinderella. In 1970, Kimball received an Academy Award® for Best Short Subject (Cartoon) for “It’s Tough to be a Bird.”
Kimball was an avid railway enthusiast and collector of old railroad memorabilia. His personal film collection at the Academy Film Archive includes footage of Kimball’s own Grizzly Flats Railroad and documentation of a range of transportation technologies.