Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Liberty Tree

The Liberty Tree’s Patriotic Roots

Disney's Liberty Tree at the Magic Kingdom, which sits across from Hall of Presidents, is based on the original Liberty Tree in Boston that served as a gathering place for the Sons of Liberty in the months leading up to the Boston Tea Party. 

The Liberty Tree’s Patriotic Roots

The events of this time period (and the tree) were featured in the 1957 Disney film, “Johnny Tremain,” which follows Johnny, a young silversmith’s apprentice, in the days before the start of the Revolutionary War. In one scene, Johnny and his friends parade through the streets singing the song “The Liberty Tree” and stop to hang lanterns on its branches.

During the making of this film, Walt Disney became excited at the possibility of adding a similarly themed Liberty Street to Disneyland park. His vision eventually grew into a whole “land” that was added to the plans for Magic Kingdom Park.

Today, our Liberty Tree illuminates each evening with the light from 13 lanterns. Each light represents one of the 13 original colonies.

The Liberty Tree’s Patriotic Roots

Fun fact: Walt Disney’s youngest daughter, Sharon, had an uncredited role in the film, “Johnny Tremain,” playing a friend of Johnny’s. (Pictured above, right).

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