Things You're Just Supposed to Know

Most of the time, Long-Forgotten assumes that readers are already familiar with basic facts
about the Haunted Mansion. If you wanna keep up with the big boys, I suggest you check out
first of all the website, After that, the best place to go is Jason Surrell's book,
The Haunted Mansion: Imagineering a Disney Classic (NY: Disney Editions; 2015). That's the
re-named third edition of The Haunted Mansion: From the Magic Kingdom to the Movies (NY:
Disney Editions, 2003; 2nd ed. 2009). Also essential reading is Jeff Baham's The Unauthorized
Story of Walt Disney's Haunted Mansion (USA: Theme Park Press, 2014; 2nd ed. 2016).

This site is not affiliated in any way with any Walt Disney company. It is an independent
fan site dedicated to critical examination and historical review of the Haunted Mansions.
All images that are © Disney are posted under commonly understood guidelines of Fair Use.


Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Son of "The Sea Captain and the Bride...You Never Knew"


(Caricature of Ken, 1999)

Never fails. You do a major study and publish major results, and the ink is barely dry (or in this case, the electrons are barely cold), and boom, something that should have been in the study is published elsewhere.

Well, I don't really mind. That's where the blog format comes in handy.

Amy Opoka, at the Walt Disney Archives, published at D23's website for Halloween what looks like a complete Ken Anderson script for his famous Ghost House. As a matter of fact, it may be the first one he did.

In addition to the text, Opoka published some storyboard sketches, all but one of which were on display in the exhibit at the Frank Wells building in the fall of 2019 and were put up in the previous post. I've added the one new one (new to us, that is) into that post. It's the captain in bed, with footprints walking around.

We're deeply in Opoka's debt for publishing the script. Alas, it is my solemn duty to point out that the storyboards she selected to put up along with the story as it moves along are not always accurate. She's got a sketch of "Hairy the Arm" (actually he's "Tor" at this point if he's got a name at all) grabbing Priscilla at the window, inserted as if it depicted the Captain attacking Priscilla after she discovers the Horrible Truth, when we know this window scene comes much earlier, even before you enter the building. She's also got the closed-and-locked trunk sketch as if it's what Priscilla discovered in the attic and opened up, but it's actually the trunk after she's locked inside of it by the dastardly Captain.

Those are quibbles. For our purposes, it will serve to simply give the text of the script itself, without all the accompaniment. The story is very simple and sketchy at this point. It's short, and there is no clue as to how Priscilla is murdered.

Scene I — The Picture Gallery

(A group assembles to listen to the tale of "The Haunted House.")

Beauregarde: Welcome to the Old Gore Mansion. I am Beauregarde, the Butler. I have been with the family for many, many years. This was what we called the Picture Gallery. Of course, it's not what it was around 1810, when Captain Bartholomew Gore brought his young bride here to live. This is a portrait of Captain Gore, a wealthy, sea-faring man, and this is Priscilla, his wife. Captain Gore was a brooding man who knew no fear... Given to fits of jealousy and rage. Some say he had an evil eye... "The Devil's eye," they called it. A thing his bride was to learn about later... much to her sorrow!

Scene II — Priscilla in Rocking Chair

Beauregarde: We are now in the hall outside Miss Priscilla's room. Let us try and imagine the terrible thing that happened here over a hundred and fifty years ago. Perhaps Miss Priscilla will come back from the spirit world and tell us about it.

Priscilla: "Bar-thol-o-mew—Bar-thol-o-mew—Where are you, Bartholomew?" It happened the night that Captain Gore was away on a a sea voyage... Or so I thought! I had found an old journal tucked away in his desk... And a curious sort of skeleton key. The journal told of the murderous deeds of Black Bart, the pirate who plundered the Caribbean... The dates and certain incidents aroused my suspicions... I thought of the sea chest in my husband's study... Why was it always locked?... Although I feared my husband's terrible secret!

Scene III —The Captain's Room

Beauregarde: This was the Captain's study. If only Miss Priscilla had not been so curious...

Priscilla: Yes, Beauregarde, I fear my curiosity was greater than my discretion... How well I remember—My hands trembled as I fitted the key into the lock of the chest. Slowly I turned the key, (click) the lock opened... I gasped in horror at the evidence of my husband's true identity, and then... (Gasp!) 

[Priscilla screams]

Scene IV — Hallway (Priscilla's Ghost)

Beauregarde: No one knows what happened to poor Priscilla on that horrifying night—But we're certain of this—She was never seen again—ALIVE, that is!

Priscilla: "Bartholomew, where are you, Bartholomew?"

Scene V — Captain's Bedroom

Beauregarde: After that ghastly night, Captain Gore knew no peace. Every unearthly sound struck terror in his heart. And the last time he was seen on Earth was in this very room!

Priscilla: He would have run away, but there was no place for him to hide... For he knew that I would search for him no matter where he might be... That I would haunt him to the end of this days!...  "Bartholomew, where are you, Bartholomew?"

Scene VI — The Attic Scene

[It starts raining outside.]

Beauregarde: This is called the mystery room, because there is a strange magnetic force that draws you here... As if it had some connection with the mystery of Captain Gore!

[The wind is moaning outside]

Priscilla: "Bartholomew—Bartholomew—"

Beauregarde: Well, that's the end of the story. Some say Priscilla had her revenge—that she drove him mad. Maybe someday we'll know what happened to Captain Bartholomew Gore.

[Thunder crashes] [Obviously, this is where the hanging scene appears—HGB2]

Priscilla: "HA HA HA HA HA..."


  1. I love that new information keeps popping up, even after all these years. When something like that D23 article is published, do you get lots of emails telling you about it? As you said, it is forgivable when someone who isn’t as steeped in Haunted Mansion lore and history puts some sketches in the wrong order. We can’t expect everyone to be as passionate!

    Changing gears, as much as I love Marc Davis’ gags, I still wish that they’d leaned a little more toward “scary” for the Mansion. Of course at the age of eight I would have been plenty scared by what was there! My nephew took one step into the foyer, heard the Ghost Host, and walked right back out.

    1. Sometimes someone tells me personally, but most of the time I learn about these things via general announcements made in places like comments at HM fansites and in the infamous LF Thread at Micechat.

    2. I hear you about scary. At the age of 14, I was already too old to actually get scared by anything in the newly-opened ride and was a little let down at the time. There were two exceptions: the first blast-up head in the attic got me good, and then there was the funny wobble in total darkness at the top of the "stairs" that worked just right, disorienting me as to whether the doombuggy was turning or not.

  2. Amazing that over fifty years later we are still learning new things about the mansion.

  3. Good day sir,
    I saw the shadowman when I was 19 years old (im 35 now) while in bed on my back watching tv at around 3:30am an halloween night. The tv channel was teletoon channel 33 (owned by nickelodeon owned by disney) and I was watching wizard of oz. Then the shadowmen entered my house and ran with superspeed to the door of my room where I saw him (Shadow of a man with an hat), red eyes evil aura and he LEAPT at me. So i am kind of shocked to have found this web site. Maybe you can help me out by telling me precisely what happened?