An Enchanted Park:
Centennial of Busch Gardens
Pasadena Museum of History Main
Through June 26, 2005
|The Pasadena Museum of History is hosting
an exhibition to celebrate the 100 Year Anniversary of the Opening
of Busch Gardens, Pasadena. Created by Adolphus Busch (1839
- 1913), the flamboyant industrialist co-founder of Anheuser-Busch
Companies, this magnificent 30-acre public pleasure garden was
one of the major tourist attractions in Southern California
for much of the first half of the 20th century. Featuring
garden sculpture, souvenirs, maps, photographs, and family memorabilia,
the exhibition presents both Garden and Busch family material
never before assembled. See
related programs and events...
Referred to as "the eighth wonder of the world," Busch Gardens
included 14 miles of pathways, 100,000 plants and shrubs, rare
birds, and 100 vividly painted sculptures imported from Germany
including Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Cinderella, Little
Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel and the Gingerbread House.
Construction and maintenance required the services of 30 expert
gardeners as well as additional laborers with an annual cost
estimated at $60,000.
the course of its history, Busch Gardens was visited by more
than 1,000,000 people. The Pacific Electric Railway added a
Busch Gardens stop on its nearest line. The site hosted entertainments,
benefits, dog shows and Easter egg parties. Hollywood used the
Gardens as a film location throughout the 1920s and 1930s. Among
the many movies filmed there were "Adventures of Robin Hood,"
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde," and "Gone With the Wind."
Busch Gardens was open to the public for the majority of years
1905 to 1937. Adolphus' wife Lily, who lived in their home in
Pasadena until her death in 1928, maintained the Gardens after
Adolphus died. On two separate occasions, they were offered
to Pasadena as a city public park.
Busch Gardenswas the brainchild of Adolphus Busch, who emigrated
from Germany just before the
Civil War, married a brewer's daughter, and by 1875 was co-partner
in what would become the great brewing empire of Anheuser-Busch.
Adolphus was a super-salesman and entrepreneur who used new
ideas like pasteurizing beer, refrigerating railcars and innovative
marketing techniques to become the King of Beer.
Busch was a grand figure with the ostentatious habits typical
of wealthy 19th century industrialists. He owned lavish estates
in St. Louis; Cooperstown, New York; Pasadena and Germany, all
with extensive grounds often decorated with statuary of characters
from Grimm's Fairy Tales. Pasadena was the winter home of the
Busch family. "I selected Pasadena…because I consider it a veritable
paradise. It has no equal in the world regarding healthful climate,
scenery, vegetation, flowers, shrubberies, fruit and general
comfort of living…" -Adolphus Busch, 1911.
The Busch Gardens exhibition is co-curated by Michael Logan
and Gary Cowles, independent researchers who for the last 2
years have been piecing together the history of the Gardens.
Because of their investigations and personal contacts, this
exhibition is an opportunity for visitors to explore the little-known
history of the Pasadena Busch Gardens and its importance as
an early family entertainment park.
|Hours & Admission
|Wed - Sun
children under 12 free
student & senior discounts
||Group tours by appointment
Call 626.577.1660, ext 10
||Free parking available in the
|For more information:
|Pasadena Museum of History