The House Of Mouse Series  LbNA # 14791

Placed DateApr 30 2005
LocationGlastonbury, CT
Planted ByWild Rover    
Found By The Prii
Last Found Jul 6 2016
Hike Distance?
Last EditedOct 18 2015

Roaring Brook Nature Preserve, South Glastonbury

In 1928 Walt Disney traveled to New York to arrange a new contract for his cartoon creation Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. Instead of receiving additional money to improve his cartoons, 26 year old Walt Disney had Oswald Rabbit wrestled from him by financial backers who held the copyright. Walt spent the return train ride to Los Angeles conjuring up a replacement for his cartoon studio, and came up with a little mouse in red velvet pants named “Mortimer.” Walt’s wife, Lillian, thought that name too pompous, and suggested “Mickey.” The rest is history.

Walt created two silent cartoons in 1927 featuring Mickey Mouse, but no distributors would buy the film. In 1928 Walt made his third Mickey Mouse cartoon, this one with sound, and “Steamboat Willie” brought Mickey Mouse to the silver screen. The first two efforts, “Plane Crazy” and “Gallopin’ Gaucho” were later given sound and released. The 1930s was Mickey Mouse’s golden age, wherein 87 cartoon shorts were produced by Walt Disney in that decade. Disney cartoons were far superior to other contemporary cartoons, both technically and artistically, and gave life to an entire family of animated characters: Minnie Mouse, Clarabelle Cow, Horace Horsecollar, Goofy, Pluto, Donald Duck, Daisy Duck, Peg-Leg Pete, and many others.

Mickey Mouse’s popularity spawned “The Mickey Mouse Club” in 1929, and in 1932 Walt Disney was honored with an Oscar for creating Mickey Mouse. The peak of Mickey’s golden decade was his starring role as the Sorcerer’s Apprentice in the 1940 feature “Fantasia.” Through the 1940s and 1950s Mickey Mouse made fewer cartoons, giving ground to other more flexible characters. Mickey moved to Disneyland in California in 1955 to become chief host of the theme park, personally welcoming millions of visitors annually. In 1971 he helped open the Walt Disney Resort in Florida, followed by Tokyo Disneyland in 1983 and Disneyland Paris in 1992. Walt Disney himself paid tribute to Mickey Mouse when he said, “I hope we never lose sight of one fact… that this was all started by a Mouse.”

Directions & Companions

The series is in the Cotton Hollow Nature Preserve on Main Street in South Glastonbury, a/k/a Route 17, which is adjacent to the parking lot for Anna’s On Main Restaurant near the intersections of Main & Hopewell and Main & Water. Park in the lot at the entrance to the Cotton Hollow Nature Preserve, which is marked by a large sign. ***Be sure to bring clues to the “Roaring Brook Mystery” letterbox and the “Blowing In The Wind” letterbox, both inside the Preserve.


Box #1: Clarabelle Cow:
Although Clarabelle is a minor Disney Character today, she has been around since the beginning. She appeared in Walt Disney’s first Mickey Mouse short “Plane Crazy” although her name at first was “Carolyn.” She was renamed “Clarabelle” in 1930, and together with her beau Horace Horsecollar have appeared in a large number of Disney Cartoons. Clarabelle is known as an incessant gossip, and has been one of Minnie Mouse’s very best friends. Both Clarabelle and Horace were major Disney stars through the mid 1930’s, with Clarabelle slightly edging out her paramour in popularity, until they were ultimately supplanted by Goofy.

Clues Part 1:
Park in the lot and enter the Preserve on the Saw Mill Road. The trail immediately goes off to the left, across a bridge over a small brook on the left (**bridge was out on 04/30/05 – logs/rocks provide adequate passage). Follow the white blazed trail over dry stream bed to right. Thereafter the white blazed trail splits with a double-yellow blazed trail -- you are between Roaring Brook on left and a small stream on right – stay on the white blazed trail. After a short time you will see on the right, over the brook, a stone wall on the crest of a hill and a stony arm extending down toward you to the stream (near to a large tree with a gaping maw). Either backtrack to a log crossing stream or go a little further where the stream is shallow and can be crossed on rocks. At the southern-most end of the rocky arm (furthest from the stream), under a large mossy stone, grazes Clarabelle Cow. It is a nice place to sit and stamp.

Box #2: Pluto:
The dog that would eventually evolve into Pluto made his debut as a bloodhound in the 1930 Mickey Mouse cartoon “The Chain Gang,” and later that same year he appeared as Minnie Mouse’s dog “Rover” in the “The Picnic.” In 1931 he finally became Mickey Mouse’s dog Pluto in “The Moose Hunt.” Unlike Goofy, Pluto was designed as an actual dog character with no speaking voice. He appeared in 48 of his own cartoons, along with a great many appearances in cartoons featuring Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. In 1941 Pluto’s “Lend a Paw”, which was a remake of the 1933 cartoon “My Pal Pluto,” won an Academy Award for Best Cartoon.

Clues Part 2:
Re-cross the stream and continue on the white blazed trail, which very soon thereafter crosses over this stream by way of a rocky walk in the water, then crosses a marshy area via logs. Soon on the right you will see a few broken men, some on the ground covered in moss, others pointing limbless to the sky. You will also see a twin-sister tree, one of the sisters of which has passed on and become a rotted stump. Ten feet from the deceased sister is a small tree with a “pooh house” at eye level. Pluto is in this dog house.

Box #3: Goofy:
Good natured but not very bright, Goofy was created as a human character, as opposed to Pluto who was created as a pet. Goofy first appeared in the 1932 cartoon “Mickey’s Review,” and his raucous laugh quickly distinguished him from the other characters. Before long, Goofy was part of the gang that included Mickey, Minnie, Pluto, Clarabelle Cow and Horace Horsecollar. His first name was Dippy Dawg, and in 1938 a book entitled “The Story of Dippy the Goof” indicated the first change in his name. By 1939 the transformation was complete with the release of the cartoon “Goofy and Wilbur.” Goofy went on to star in the 48 “Goofy” cartoons, primarily in the 1940s and 1950s, and also appeared in many cartoons with Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck. He was best known for his series of “how-to” cartoons, where he bumbled through the explanations. In 1995 he starred in his first feature film, “A Goofy Movie” which was built entirely around Goofy.

Clues Part 3:
Continue on the white trail, which is not very well marked. Bushwhack under/over a large tree fallen over the path (at the foot of a white blazed tree), and past a marked “Cornus Lorida” that has fallen to the right of the path. The trail now crosses to the far right, over the stream by a log bridge built against a rock that lies in the center of the stream. About 100 yards up the white blazed trail on the right side, up the embankment are the remnants of the foundation of a long gone house or cellar. About 20 feet NW of the right edge of the foundation is a tree with a “pooh house” in its light green lichened base, which is on the embankment. Behind the rocks protecting this enclave you will find Goofy.

Box #4: Donald Duck:
Donald Duck made his debut in the 1934 Silly Symphony cartoon “The Wise Little Hen.” His fiery temper endeared him to audiences, and in the 1940s he surpassed Mickey Mouse in the number of cartoons reaching theatres. His 1943 propaganda cartoon “Der Fuehrer’s Face,” which was originally entitled “Donald Duck in Nutziland,” won the Academy Award for Best Cartoon. Eventually there were 128 Donald Duck cartoons, in addition to a number of others with Mickey Mouse, Goofy and Pluto.

Clues Part 4:
As you walk back down toward the trail from Goofy’s lair look due East across the trail to a well built stone cellar some 25’ square and 6’ deep. Don’t fall in, as it is not easy to get out. At the NW side of the cellar is a tree that has fallen and kicked up a small quarry of stones. In the shroom-covered base of this tree, on the edge of the cellar, Donald has chosen to make his home.

Box #5: Daisy Duck:
“Donna Duck” debuted in the 1937 cartoon “Don Donald,” but became known as “Daisy Duck” by the 1940 cartoon “Mr. Duck Steps Out.” A duck of high drama, Daisy can go from coy to flaming just as fast as her beau Donald. No other duck has a sassy sashay to her walk, and she more than matches Donald at his own game. Daisy made 14 film appearances, including her only starring role in the 1940 cartoon “Donald’s Dilemma.”

Clues Part 5:
Bushwhack back to the white trail and continue on past two more cellars on the left, and a bird house and a marked birch on the right. There is a rock wall on the right side of the trail across from the third cellar (Donald’s being the 1st) – you can hear the river rushing well now. Several trees grow across the top of the stone wall. Start at the NW end of the wall and walk to the second tree growing atop the wall (there are 8 or 9 in all). Below this tree in a gape in the wall Daisy has made this hearth her home.

Box #6 Minnie Mouse:
Minnie Mouse first appeared in Mickey Mouse’s original release, in the 1928 cartoon “Steamboat Willie” as Mickey’s girlfriend. Minnie’s singing career, and her relationship with Mickey, both blossomed in the Oscar-nominated film “Building A Building,” released in 1933. In the 1936 cartoon “Mickey’s Rival” Minnie is courted by Mortimer Mouse, who plays practical jokes on Mickey, but Mickey and Minnie wind up together in the end. Minnie Mouse appeared in 73 cartoons with Mickey and Pluto.

Clues Part 6:
Continue on the white trail past a few homes on the left across the river boasting several magnificent Pinchot sycamores. Soon on the right you will see an enclave with an excellent glacial erratic field. At the start of this field is a twin sister evergreen on the right with a large, dead tree leaning against one sister. Standing with the twins at your right shoulder and facing down the trail take a bearing of 190 degrees and proceed into the enclave to a small mossy-green tree. Beneath this tree buried in a glacial erratic of mossy quartz you will find Minnie Mouse.

Box #7 Mickey Mouse:
When Mickey Mouse made his 1978 film debut in “Steamboat Willie” at the Colony Theatre in New York City, Walt Disney himself was the voice of the soon-to-be-famous mouse. Walt Disney was given a special Academy Award in 1932 for the creation of Mickey Mouse, the most famous of all Disney cartoon characters. The 1935 cartoon “The Band Concert” was the first Disney cartoon in color, and every cartoon that followed [save one] were in Technicolor. In 1939 Mickey Mouse was redesigned and was nominated for an Academy Award for “The Pointer” featuring Mickey and Pluto. In 1953 Mickey starred in “The Simple Things” before taking a hiatus that lasted 30 years. By that time Mickey Mouse had starred in more than 120 different cartoons, launched the Mickey Mouse Club, and graced the most famous wristwatch in America. Mickey Mouse has appeared on thousands of merchandise items, and currently holds the esteemed title of Chief Greeter at Disney theme parks in California, Florida, Tokyo and Paris.

Clues Part 7:
Continue up the white trail past a grain house across the river to the left -- the waterway splits around an island at this point and the rapids are apparent as the brook “roars” below. On the left you can see the remnants of the Cotton Hollow Cotton Factory (subject of another nearby box). A very short distance later the white trail seems to end as it descends to a stony wall and glacial erratic along the rapids. Where the trail stops and begins to descend, look straight across the tip of the gorge to a small tree with many roots growing from under a rock. You might have to access the cave prone, but amongst these roots under the rock is Mickey Mouse.

Good luck, and thanks for looking !!!
Happy Birthday Krusty Krab !!! ---Wild Rover

Thanks & Credits

Thanks to my wife Laurie for thinking up the idea for this series, and for encouraging me to complete it for Krusty Krab’s 6th birthday. It was the catalyst for organizing the Spring Into April Drive (04/30/05) wherein it debuted. Big thanks to MayEve for helping me to box, bag and plant this series. Thanks to you for looking. –WR

“The Main Mouse Is In The House” @

“Clarabelle and Horace” by David Gerstein @

“Disney Characters History” @