Gustave Eiffel met Jules Verne and Thomas Edison at his Tower apartment to start a secret society of optimists. Plus Ultra was founded at the 1889 World's Fair in Paris, France. The organization's purpose is to create, moderate and expand upon new scientific advancements for humanity. Key members of Plus Ultra included Ray Bradbury, Amelia Earhart, Mark Twain, Nikola Tesla, and other key scientific figures. Walt Disney was a member of Plus Ultra.
The Tomorrowland '59 expansion at Disneyland was actually about training future society members for the journey to an alternate-universe that had been found (or developed) by Plus Ultra. The blueprints for the expansion held key technologies that enabled the journey, including Supra Transport.
Key VIPs who were encouraged to join Plus Ultra were given a special VIP audio tour of World's Fair attractions - such as Ford's Magic Skyway, and It's a Small World. For those that couldn't attend the fair, a double-grooved LP was given with the details.
- Nikola Tesla, inventor
- Thomas Edison, inventor
- Gustave Eiffel, architect and designer of the Eiffel Tower
- Jules Verne, writer and futurist
- H.G. Wells, writer and futurist
- Amelia Earhart, aviator
- Leó Szilárd, inventor
- Albert Einstein, inventor
- Samuel Langhorne Clemens AKA Mark Twain, writer
- Orson Welles, actor, director, writer, and narrator of Plus Ultra recruitment content for the 1939 New York World's Fair
- Ray Bradbury, writer and futurist
- Walt Disney, theme park magnate and futurist
- Mary Blair, artist and Disney Imagineer
- Bob Gurr, mechanical engineer and Disney Imagineer
- John Hench, futurist and Disney Imagineer
- Richard and Robert Sherman, songwriters
- Brad Bird, film director
- Damon Lindelof, screenwriter
- Jeff Jensen, comic book writer
To be recruited into Plus Ultra, one had to meet certain criteria and guidelines in order to join or be asked to join. Recruiters and scouts were given these rules and sent out into the field. They were:
- Identify artists with a gift for positive, optimistic future-thinking.
- Must be amenable to working in mediums not yet discovered.
- Communication skills a huge plus.
- Avoid artists whose work focuses on anger, despair, hopelessness.
- Identify brilliance based on innovation and insightfulness.
- Look for those who are already solving the problems of the future.
- Make sure projects are not burdened by contemporary theories.
- Avoid entrants fixated on financial gain.
- Focus on applicants with expertise in space and para-phasic travel.
- Avoid those who did not pass security clearance.
- Befriend faculty at institutes of higher learning.
- Favorable locations include MIT, Caltech, Carnegie Mellon.
- Candidates will possess qualities of optimism and confidence in the future.
- Initial contacts should be in technology, science, and humanities divisions.
- Avoid those who display traits of cynicism, doubt, bitterness.
- Hint at technologies beyond the currently possible.
- Solicit constructive feedback at the ends of [Science Factual] episodes.
- Encourage viewers to submit their own visions of tomorrow.
- Avoid those who take a dim view of the future and/or the Science Factual program.
- Plus Ultra is latin for "further beyond".
- Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison were bitter rivals, so the implication is that Plus Ultra was such an important project that Tesla and Edison were willling to call a truce on their rivalry and work for a common goal.