Schweitzer Falls is a waterfall that appears on the Jungle Cruise in the Disney Parks. It was discovered by Dr. Albert Falls, the founder of the Jungle Navigation Company, and is home to the Backside of Water.

Description[edit | edit source]

Schweitzer Falls is located somewhere along the Nile River in Northern Africa near an intersection in the river located South to the rapids of Kilimanjaro, East from the dense jungles of the Nile, and North from the tribe of the Umbala peoples.[1] Schweitzer Falls is a rock formation jutting westwards with a passage underneath of it large enough for boats to pass through with relative ease. The actual waterfall of the formation is composed of two main falls coming from an unknown river which goes into the Nile River.

Schweitzer Falls is probably best known for its possessing of, "The Backside of Water" as observed from within its aforementioned river-passage. The Backside of Water is (for unknown reasons) considered in high-regards to be the 8th wonder of the world.

History[edit | edit source]

The waterfall was formed thousands of years ago by the natural forces of the world. The falls were discovered by Dr. Albert Falls on August 12th, 1891 and in doing so he also discovered the 8th Wonder of the Natural World, the Backside of Water. The waterfall became known as Schweitzer Falls, named of-course for Doctor Falls.

When Alberta Falls took ownership of the Jungle Navigation Company in the 1930s, the company began offering cruises on the famous jungle rivers of the world, which included a stop at Schweitzer Falls along with the backside of water. Circa 1938, a sample of Schweitzer Falls' water was extracted and sent to Marshall College to be studied by one Dr. D. Marley.

Development history[edit | edit source]

Schweitzer Falls' practical purpose is to be a sort of mixer for the brown-dye and water in the Jungle Cruise's artificial rivers as a means of hiding the mechanisms underneath of the water. In real life, the faux-waterfall was named after Dr. Albert Schweitzer, an early 20th century humanitarian who was renowned for his work in Africa. Dr. Schweitzer was originally stated by skippers to be who discovered the falls while Dr. Albert Falls being the namesake was originally an improv joke. This joke made its way into the ride's official script in the 1990s and Albert Falls was made into an actual character with the opening of the Skipper Canteen.

Appearances and allusions[edit | edit source]

Adventure Trading Company[edit | edit source]

A barrel containing, "The Backside of Water" could be seen in this event, being transported by the titular Adventure Trading Company.[2]

Jungle Cruise[edit | edit source]

Schweitzer Falls is encountered on the African rivers - specified as the Nile River at the Magic Kingdom. The skipper comments that it was named for the famous explorer Dr. Albert Falls. After going through the Nile, the boat makes a full circle and travels underneath the Backside of Water.

In the queue for Disneyland's Jungle Cruise, Nigel Greenwater mentions rains causing the falls to run faster than usual resulting in dangerous currents.[3] In the Magic Kingdom, Albert Awol mentions Sir Morton Stanley waiting at the falls to meet with David Livingstone. A sign in the queue for the Magic Kingdom's Jungle Cruise instructs skippers and passengers that passing over Schweitzer Falls for daredevil opportunities is prohibited, implying that such incidents had already transpired.[4]

Skipper Canteen[edit | edit source]

A barrel labelled, "Backside of Water" sits on a shelf, next to some small figurines. It has a sign saying that it is to be shipped to one Dr. D. Marley at Marshall College in Bedford, Connecticut.[5] Additionally, the Falls are depicted in the portrait of Dr. Albert Falls from 1911 and their certificate of discovery is mounted.

Trader Sam's[edit | edit source]

Schweitzer Falls is the name of a beverage in the Trader Sam bars, identified in the menus as having been the favourite drink of Dr. Albert Falls. In Trader Sam's Enchanted Tiki Bar there is a photograph of a large waterfall with the note, "The Frontside of Water" a house-rule saying, "Call bartender if Schweitzer falls".[6] The latter seems to be referring to an individual named Schweitzer who was a patron of Sam's bar (potentially Dr. Albert Schweitzer).

In other media[edit | edit source]

Skipper Survival Guide[edit | edit source]

An illustration of Schweitzer Falls was featured on the covers of these booklets. In the story, there is mention of a 1935 incident in-which a boat called the Mekong Miss was wrecked, passing over the falls.

Tales from Adventureland[edit | edit source]

Appearing in the opening chapters of The Golden Paw, Schweitzer Falls is placed on the Congo River rather than the Nile as it is in the attraction. During an expedition aboard the Nile Princess to retrieve the cursed Key of Fate, Andy Stanley became separated from skipper Jack McGraw and the rest of the team and ended up taking a plunge over Schweitzer Falls in the boat alone when trying to get the key to safety. McGraw's team would find themselves trapped up a tree by an angry rhinoceros.

Connections[edit | edit source]

Indiana Jones[edit | edit source]

Dr. D. Marley at Marshall College was sent a barrel of the Backside of Water. Marshall College is the college where Indiana Jones works as a professor.

Trivia[edit | edit source]

  • It is unknown if the fictitious falls bare any connection to the historic Dr. Albert Schweitzer nor where the, "Schweitzer" part of their name originates from. It should be noted that the historic Albert Schweitzer would have only been 16 when Dr. Falls discovered the falls.

References[edit | edit source]

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