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Early 1960s: Walt Disney had seen his empire turn into a major success, and Walt Disney Productions had established itself as the world's leading producer of family entertainment. Walt Disney was the Head of Pageantry for the 1960 Winter Olympics.
1964: Disney debuted a number of exhibits at the 1964 New York World's Fair, including audio-animatronics figures, all of which were later integrated into attractions at Disneyland and a new theme park project which was to be established on the East Coast. Walt began to realize that all that he and his Imagineers had learned about buildings and space in relation to people in the development of Disneyland could be put to use in planning communities, even whole cities. This got Walt thinking, and he began to engross himself in books about city planning and all that was needed to pull off something of that magnitude.
In the background Disney held meetings with several world leaders to survey if they would support an attempt to create a community or nation set up within the United States. Walt Disney determined that Florida provided the ideal place to set up a community as he imagined with him as its sole ruler. However, Walt did not want to arouse suspicion by the federal government.
1964 – 1966: Under the code name Epcot and through various dummy companies, Walt Disney purchased 27,800 acres (113 km2) of Florida swampland (twice the size of Manhattan Island) located between the cities of Orlando and Kissimee, now better now as the province of Reedy Creek. In a statement to the press, Disney "Here in Florida we've enjoyed something we've never enjoyed at Disneyland: the blessing of size. There's enough land here to hold all the ideas and plans we could possibly imagine", Walt Disney said, referring to the fact that he had little control over the surrounding area of Disneyland.
Disney also petitioned with the State of Florida Legislature to give him municipal jurisdiction over the land they had acquired by aligning himself with the than governor and future secretary of state of the Republic of Epcot. This was to make sure that Walt Disney could have full control over every part of the property, even how the buildings were constructed. Walt was planning new ideas in urban living as well as covered operations to set up his own armed forces and did not want the government to interfere.
1966: Walt Disney presents his building plans to the world in a 30 minute movie. He presents it as an entertainment centre together with a new type of urban development. Behind the scenes planning for airports, military facilities, manufacturing facilities, and personnel and population has started. The first 2000 new Epcotians arrive with their families to begin the construction of the city of Celebration with the surrounding strongholds.
October 1966: Walt Disney checks in to St. Joseph's Hospital shortly after inspecting the first units of his personal security force lead by his son-in-law, Ron W. Miller. Roy E. Disney, Walt’s nephew is in charge of propaganda.
Walt is diagnosed with lung cancer and undergoes revolutionary surgery whereby his lungs are replaced by artificial lungs made of a new plastic developed by Walt Disney’s own secret research institute which is located underneath the Disneyland grounds in Anaheim, California.
Walt Disney celebrates his 65th birthday at home as he is recovering from his surgery. On 15 December, Disney feels healthy enough to fly to the Florida site and inspect the construction progress in person.
January 1967: After the former governor of Florida dies in a mysterious plane crash, Richard (Dick) van Dyke is elected into office in a landslide victory in a campaign that is heavily sponsored by the Walt Disney Company.
June 1967: Official inauguration ceremony of the city of Celebration takes place with the whole Disney family attending. The total population rises to 20,000 and will double over the course of the next year.
February 1968: Federal government demands a progress report on the opening of the Walt Disney World Amusement Park and clarification on the large amount of raw materials entering the site. Disney ignores all requests and takes up permanent residence in the city of Celebration.
June 1968: Federal officers try to enter the grounds of Epcot but a blocked access by Disney’s security force. The government of the United States submits a formal protest with Disney.
11 September 1969: National Guards are seen moving towards Celebration. Governor Van Dyke responds by sending the first Epcotian battalion to secure the northern line between Pensacola, Tallahassee and Jacksonville. Navy units stationed in Pensacola join the battalion and secure the cities of Mobile and Wright.
12 September 1969: The Epcotian tank division surrounds the National Guards just outside the city of Orlando. The Florida Keys, Miami and Fort Lauderdale and all locally stationed army units pledge loyalty to Walt Disney and Governor Van Dyke.
15 September 1969: After a standoff of three days and threats back and forth, Walt Disney declares the foundation of the Republic of Epcot. It is announced that next to the state of Florida, which now will be known as the province of Celebration, also the City of New Orleans and the Bahamas have joined the newly declared republic. President Nixon responds by threatening with harsh measures if, as he states, “this nonsense does not stops at once”.
16 September 1969: A joined statement by the United Kingdom( including Canada, Australia, and New Zealand), France, Germany, Spain, Italy , Cuba, Brazil, and Argentina, in which they acknowledge the Republic of Epcot and promise military support to the country, if the United States might decide to intervene in any way.
17 September 1969: Walt Disney assumes the office of president of the Republic of Epcot with his brother Roy as vice-president and minister of finance. Richard van Dyke is made secretary of state, Roy E. Disney assumes the tasks of minister of industrial development, and Ron W. Miller becomes secretary of defense.
20 September 1969: After a siege of eight days, supplies and morale with the National Guards at Orlando are running low. Commander Marcus D. Jones surrenders his arms to the Epcotian security forces. President Disney declares the resignation from active service in the United States armed forces of all residents of the area now occupied by the Republic of Epcot. This means an enormous blow to the armed forces in Vietnam.