The Walt Disney Family Museum in San Francisco, California presents The Walt Disney Studios and World War II, a remembrance of The Walt Disney Studios’ extensive contributions to the Allies’ World War II effort. Curated by World War II historian Kent Ramsey, this immersive exhibition will be displayed in the Diane Disney Miller Exhibition Hall from May 13, 2020 through January 11, 2021.
With the Disney studio lot in Burbank requisitioned as an Army anti-aircraft base after the bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, Walt and his staff pledged to support the war effort without hesitation, devoting over 90% of their wartime output to producing training, propaganda, entertainment, and public-service films, while also designing an extensive collection of insignia and print media. This original exhibition includes rarely-seen artwork, film clips, photos, literature, and other historical objects and ephemera from this unique period in animation history.
As the anchor attraction in the Presidio of San Francisco, The Walt Disney Family Museum is an ideal location for The Walt Disney Studios and World War II. The Presidio served as an active U.S. Army base from 1846 until 1994, when it was decommissioned and designated a National Park. Constructed in 1897, the main museum building is one of five prominent brick Army barracks on the Main Parade Ground. The museum also occupies a second brick building, built in 1908, which served as a combination gymnasium and post exchange, and which now houses the Diane Disney Miller Exhibition Hall.
Commemorating the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II, the exhibition will be on view in the Diane Disney Miller Exhibition Hall from May 13, 2020 through January 11, 2021.
The Walt Disney Family Museum is proud to provide free admission to the museum and this exhibition year-round for active and retired military personnel, as well as their spouses and dependents with valid ID. The Museum also participates in the Blue Star Museums program, which grants free general admission to all military ID holders—active, retired, spouses, or dependents—and up to five of their family members between Armed Forces Day (Saturday, May 16, 2020) and Labor Day (Monday, September 7, 2020).
Disney Studio Artist, Donald Duck title card art, c. 1942; collection of the Walt Disney Family Foundation, © Disney
Disney Studio Artist, Masquer’s Servicemen’s Morale Corps program card, 1944; courtesy of Kent Ramsey; characters © Disney