Although the first cards for this area had their own logo by
the time of the 0111-0000 series cards it was referred to by its'
second name The Walt Disney World Village and had the same WDW
logo on the back of the card as all WDW post cards of that era.
It later was renamed the Disney Village Marketplace, and later
Downtown Disney Marketplace. though in these early days it only
covered a fraction of the area Downtown Disney covers today. One
expansion though is in part documented on the postcards...
EVERY PICTURE TELLS A STORY....THIS ONE GETS TWO
In 1977 a new addition was being made way out at the western end of the Lake Buena Vista Village, that area is now closer to the center of Downtown Disney.
The riverboat style restaurant now known as Fultons' Crab House was at that time the Empress Lilly Riverboat (opened May 1, 1977) and it had three restaurants. The first edition of Disney A TO Z (p. 164) notes that they were"---the Fisherman's Deck , the Steerman's Quarters, and the Empress Room. Until the opening of Victoria and Albert's at the Grand Floridian, the Empress room provided the most elegant dining experience on Walt Disney World property." the listing goes on to note that although it was originally considered part of the Disney Village Marketplace once Pleasure Island was added in 1989 it became part of that new area. But the view on this card was taken probably before the Empress Lilly even opened. You may be thinking how can we know that. Well if you have one of these cards you could take out a magnifying glass and examine the card, but a scanner can be even better than a magnifying glass in pulling out small details on a card so I've blown up one corner of the card below for us all.
Those trucks parked there sure remind me of the type that workmen putting the finishing touches on the inside of the restaurants might drive , also there is something partly shrouded by the tree branches that looks to be painted "construction vehicle yellow".
Story TwoMost messages on the back of postcards are limited, it's hard to write anything too significant in such a small space. Usually the best you can hope to achieve is a witty comment like the postcard of Big Al at the Country Bear Jamboree that says on the back "saw this and thought of you, HA HA" or the card picturing Cinderella's castle that says on the back "bought this property, I'm going to tear it down and build a 24 unit condo". More often the space on the back of the card says something like The drive/flight down was good/rainy, weather here is good / rainy / too hot, we went to Bush Gardens/ Sea World/ Cypress Gardens yesterday, went here today it was too crowded / you've gotta see it / we looked til our eyes got sore (ok so I've only seen that last one once) tomorrow we are going to the beach/ the cape/ silver springs . Intersperse with those somewhat generic tidings with comments wishing various folks back home well, and you have all most of us (myself included) are able to fit onto the back of one of these cards. But Ahhhh, that is what makes me appreciate the truly exceptional postcard greeting even more. And the most exceptional postcard message I have read to date was on one of the cards pictured above (The aerial view of the Empress Lilly though in a later series, postmarked 20 July 1984, as card number 0100-12000) Dear Xxxxxx and Xxxxxxx,
Had a wonderful lunch on this boat came back at night
for a Dixie Land Band and a sing-a-long. Listened to a symphony
orchestra under the stars. Spent 5 days, 15 hrs. a day running
around the Kingdom and Epcot xxxxxx + I went horse back riding
his first time on the trails at Ft. Wilderness He went to River
Country the last day and then ate at the Top of the World 15th
floor a wonderful buffet. The electrical parade fireworks and
Donald Duck parade all good
(not quite) TWO OF A KIND
The shop known as "Port of Entry" is featured on both of the views below, which at first glance may appear to be identical, however, there are differences. First, it looks as if the view on the right is cropped a bit more tightly, but beyond that some of the people that are in the one photo are not in the other, since three of the people in the photos appear to be the same people, standing in the same places, and wearing the same clothes, I think it's safe to conclude that these are two different shots from the same photo session, though published a few years apart.
Left: 01110500 no title right:0111-2003 WALT DISNEY WORLD VILLAGE