Walt Disney Timeline
Timeline Description: Walt Disney started with nothing, but he built a world renowned entertainment industry. His movies, merchandise, and toys are still loved today, and his story is truly an inspirational one.

Date Event
1901 Walt Disney is born

Walt Disney was born in Chicago to parents Elias and Flora. His given name was Walter Elias Disney.
1910 Life on the farm

The Disney family moved to a farm when Walt was very young. He spent lots of his time drawing and imagining, but when his father became ill they had to sell the farm and move to Kansas City, Mo.
1911 Walt discovers movies

While living in Missouri, Walt got a paper route to help the family's financial situation. It was while working this job he first discovered movies, and he fell in love with them.
1917 Art school

Walt continued drawing, and when his family returned to Chicago he enrolled in the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. It was his dream to work as a newspaper cartoonist.
1918 World War I

Though he was too young to join the army, Walt lied about his age in order to enlist. He fought in France for a year in the American Ambulance Corps.
1920 Walt's failure

Walt joined forces with Ub Iwerks and formed a commercial artist company. However, the company failed after only a month.
1923 Walt tries again

Over a few years, Walt tried a few different ventures which failed, including the Laugh-O-gram Corporation. He eventually founded Disney Brothers Studio in Hollywood, which would later become Hyperion Studio.
1928 Mickey Mouse is created

At the height of the talking-picture revolution, Walt created a film called Steamboat Willie. It featured a talking mouse named Mickey, and it was an instant hit.
1930 Mickey Mouse merchandising

Walt, along with his brother Roy, decided to play up Mickey's growing popularity. They created a merchandise line and the Mickey Mouse Club, which quickly grew to over one million members.
1937 Disney's first full length film

After creating several "short" films, Walt decided to move ahead with full length films. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was released.
1942 World War II

After Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Walt Disney released multiple films including Fantasia, Pinocchio, and Dumbo. When WWII began, the US Army took over part of the studio to house troops, but Disney still managed to produce Bambi.
1950 Cinderella is a hit

Disney released Cinderella, and it was an instant hit. It was their biggest success since the release of Snow White.
1955 Disneyland opens

Walt Disney purchased land in California and built the Disneyland theme park. They had over one million visitors in just two months.
1965 Disney World ideas begin

Walt purchased land in Florida to build a theme park called Epcot, which would be a peek into the technology of "tomorrow." It was an idea that eventually grew into Disney World.
1966 Walt Disney Dies

At the age of 66, Walt Disney died of lung cancer on December 15, 1966. In the same year, Winnie the Pooh and the Honey Tree released, and Walt's legacy continued with dozens of films and multiple Disney theme parks around the world.