TRACES OF LAUREL: <span>Local restaurants in the '50s</span>  

As I was finishing the Pitman series I debated on about what to feature next in this column. I know I want to finish two series (“The Sixth Jail and Its Jailers” and “Schools in the Colony Area”) which I started in 2019 but stopped because COVID restrictions made research difficult. With restrictions lifted and people traveling again I considered writing about some of the motels and restaurants in the area but I wasn’t sure where to start.

When I was at the courthouse researching the jail, I found a book of receipts for permits for places of amusement in the county. This book began in October, 1954 and stopped in the early 1960s. I used that book to provide the list at the end. This list doesn’t include every restaurant which was located here during that time. It only lists the ones who paid $10 for a permit. Any business which opened prior to that time will not be shown. There is also a possibility that some of the places which obtained permits never opened. Many of them were probably only in business for a brief period.

I grew up in the 60s and 70s. When I was young, “eating out” meant you took a blanket outside and had a picnic. We rarely ate in restaurants. The only restaurant on this list at which I recall eating is the first one. The 229 Truck Stop was near my home. Hale’s restaurant was located across the road from my home but I only remember it as a residence. I recall hearing about a few of the other restaurants on the list, but I do not know anything about most of them. If I find additional information, I will share it with you in a future column.

After the restaurant name is the name of the person who received the permit and the date of the receipt. The owners/management changed on some of these so I only listed the first person to get the permit. An * means I had difficulty reading the writing.

If you can provide additional information or corrections, please contact me by calling me at 606-864-0607 or through e-mail at laurelcountykyhistoricalsociety@yahoo.com. The library is now open from 10 to 3 on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Due to a limited number of volunteers it is advisable that you contact us to be certain we are open. Patrons will need to adhere to CDC guidelines. Also you may still schedule an appointment by calling and leaving a message or contacting us through e-mail.

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