I just heard about the Walt Disney Birthplace House preservation project on the news and excitedly started digging around; only me and other homie nerds do things like this.
I was surprised to learn about a Kickstarter campaign to restore the home to its original state called The Walt Disney Birthplace Preservation Project announced this week on Walt’s birth date, December 5th.
Walt Disney’s father Elias was a carpenter and built the home located at 2156 North Tripp Avenue Chicago, IL. Walt was born on December 5, 1901 in the upstairs bedroom of the home and lived there until he was four years old. Interesting that Walt had three older siblings, Herbert and Raymond, his brother Roy Disney whom we all have heard of was 12 years older than himself, and a younger sister Ruth, two years younger than Walt.
A very in-depth history by Yesterland reveals Walt’s father, Elias, moved the family from Florida to Chicago to work on the construction of the Worlds Columbian Exposition of 1893. With this world fair background, Walt’s father no doubt influenced Walt Disney’s future dreams about a fairytale place come true like Disneyland.
To think it all began here. The home as it stands today was up for sale and sold this past June. It has been added to and changed from its original state by many owners. While the house was up for historical landmark consideration in Chicago, the owner at the time feared it would be hard to sell with all the stipulations.
New owners plan to not only restore the home as it once was, but that The Walt Disney Birthplace house “becomes a portal to new approaches in early childhood development and help inspire future Walts and Roys.”
They are researching the Disney Family history and have a larger vision for the home beyond its restoration. The above is a concept art poster for the restoration by artist Clara Moon and can be yours for a donation to the project through Kickstarter. Looks like they plan to have the restoration done by Fall of 2014.
I am not a part of this fundraiser, but have worked on them before and I hope this Walt Disney Birthplace project gets the funds it needs for restoration. If I had the funds I would donate money to get this paver stone engraved with my family’s name on the walkway in front or along the side of the restored home; imagine having your name on a piece of Disney!
Donations start at $1 and go up to $10,000 or more. As a donor you receive different exclusive items such as a collectible T-shirt, bejeweled limited edition items, group tour of the home, all the way up to a paid flight for a one-night stay at the home.
Check out more about donation goodies here.
This video introduces you to the vision and visionary owners of the Walt Disney Birthplace home. You will also see some historical views of the home and historical photos of the Disney family.
I think we will be hearing more about this magical project through the news. I will try to go there in the spring and get a glimpse how it’s coming along.