Set the Wayback Machine to Visit Six Flags in the '60s

April 19, 2020, 6:11 PM · There are two sorts of places you are most likely to find me: theme parks and antique stores. There is a great joy when one comes across a theme park item in an antique store, and a few years ago I hit a real jackpot — three View-Master reel sets from Six Flags Over Texas and Six Flags Over Georgia from the late 1960s.

Six Flags Over Georgia was my home park, and before I really even knew about Disneyland, I was a die-hard fan of Six Flags. I searched for a way to make prints of the images, but there seemed to be nothing out there designed for View-Master format.

Like many of us, I've been spending a lot of time cleaning and organizing items in storage. One thing I came across was a big box of slides from the time I lived in Belgium, after high school. At the time, it was much less expensive to take and process slides than to print photos, so the aunt I was living with suggested taking slides. Well, when I found them, the desire to make prints came back. I found a fantastic product online made by Kodak. It has a small lighted plate where you can place a slide and there is a platform where you can lay your cell phone and take photos of the slides. It works great and I realized I could use the devise to capture images from the View-Master Reels.

So I am happy now to offer you a chance to visit Six Flags Over Georgia and Six Flags Over Texas via View-Master. As you know, these images were presented in 3D and, as such, there is some strange composition used to add to the 3D effect.

[Editor's note from Robert: Huge thanks to Rob for these, but I did want to remind everyone that these are images from the 1960s, so they depict a few things that might raise an eyebrow or two for modern audiences - including one super-not-safe-for-work image in the Six Flags Over Texas album linked below. I did not include that image in the video slideshow, which is safe-for-work. Not that any of us are at work anymore. Sigh....]

If you would like to see the images individually, you can via these Flickr albums: Six Flags Over Georgia and Six Flags Over Texas.

The image of the entrance columns and fountains always reminds me of the closing spiel that the staff in guest relations would make every night. I still know it by heart: "Ladies and Gentlemen, may I have your attention please. The hour of closing has arrived and we must say good night. Our Hosts and Hostesses would like to thank you for visiting Six Flags and we hope that you will visit again soon. The park will open tomorrow at 10:00, but for now, a pleasant good-night."

Replies (7)

April 19, 2020 at 6:16 PM

If nothing else, this shows hos safety standards at parks were so lax back then, it's amazing we didn't have even more casualties....

April 19, 2020 at 9:53 PM

MikeW - The slide Robert rightfully choose to not include had nothing to do with the quality of the operational staff or the procedures. I feel safe in saying his “not-safe-for-work” description was intended for the culturally insensitive scene on SFOT’s River ride, not a “not safe work” situation.

April 19, 2020 at 11:45 PM

Oh I figured but is amazing seeing other rides without all the ultra-safety stuff we're used to.

April 20, 2020 at 2:16 AM

I remember back in the late 60's-early 70's, Six Flags would put a Six Flags bumper sticker on almost every car in its parking lot. When you paid to park, they would give you a flyer that instructed you to put your windshield visor down if you didn't want the sticker. (Rock City, a popular attraction back then, also did this.)

April 20, 2020 at 7:11 PM

I get a very 1950's-60's Disneyland vibe from checking out the slideshow. Interesting how this brand paved its own path as it seemed it was very similar to Disneyland back in the day.

That slide with the lynching. Thats something else. Different times, different times. Wonder what story that attraction was trying to tell?

April 21, 2020 at 2:13 PM

Hi Manny - I can't speak for the SFOT version but there was a similar ride at SFOG called the Jean Ribault River Adventure.
The ride was based on the historic exploration of the waterways of Georgia by French Exploror Jean Ribault. In the written spiel from 1972, the riders on the ride are tracing the steps of Jean Ribault but the land is still dangerous due to wildlife, whirlpools Native Americans and soldiers from the waring British army.
Our skipper is on the outlook for an advance scout named Jacque Lugoir. He is suppose to meet up with us and guide us down the river. At one point in the ride, we pass an Indian village and we discover poor Jacque. He has been captured and is being burned at the stake.
Here is the narration from that part of the ride:

"From the sounds of those drums I’d say we were getting deeper into Indian territory. Oh no, our scout has been caught by the Indians and is being burned at the stake. Those Indians are doing the ceremonial dance of death and it could be (worried) meant for us."

I rode this ride many times as a kid and honestly don't remember this scene. I would have only been 5 in 1972, so odds are good the scene was removed or changed before I was old enough to remember it.
Remember that in the early years, the Six Flags parks had a theme that was based on the history of the nations that at one time governed the land. The rides and sections were based on history, and sometimes that history wasn't always always so rosy. Just as we have seen things change at Disney - most recently the auction scene on Pirates of the Caribbean, the themes and storylines of attractions at the Six Flags parks have also changed, and for the better I feel.

April 22, 2020 at 7:24 PM

Sad to see the way Six Flags treats Over Texas now. It's the fourth best attended park in the chain and yet it gets nothing but weak flat rides, clones, and castoffs. They haven't had a new ground-up, non-clone coaster in almost 20 years. And no a Mack Powersplash does not count even if it does prove to be a fun ride. I understand that ownership at the park is much more complex than, say, at Magic Mountain meaning that it doesn't hit the strict Six Flags parameters for massive investment that the 3 "big" parks do but it's sad to see the original treated like a dog by the parent company despite it's relative financial success.

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