Letterman’s Diner- Kutztown, PA

We stopped here this morning for a second breakfast, a “short” stack of pancakes and a side of bacon for me, an order of eggs, bacon, homefries for my dad. My short stack turned out to be two excellent pancakes the size of platters, which even I couldn’t finish. The bacon was tasty, the coffee fresh, and the grillmanship exciting.

Outside view of the diner. Though an angled front facade has been added, the complete barrel roof is still visible. You can see where the original front sliding door once was.

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Inside view of the diner. Lots of later changes, but the tile work on the counter, the ceiling and the vent hood are original.

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It looks from this period photo, taken after the move, that a white painted flat ceiling was added, preserving the original wood barrel roofed ceiling underneath.
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Original window at the front of the diner. The other window has been removed to make way for a larger front door.

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The ceiling of the diner has this design painted where the seam trim of the ceiling (now missing) meet.
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Dan’s Diner of Spencertown, NY- same design.
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Vent hood
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The owners of the diner say that this is the nation’s oldest Silk City, built in the very early 1930s. Can anyone confirm Silk City as the builder?

Manufacturer of the diner has been confirmed as a O’Mahony.

Compare to this interior photo of Dan’s Diner of Spencertown, NY. Same vent hood, same sliding door (though the Kutztown one’s is gone, it’s visible in the old photos, and the doublewide delete on the wall), and the same ornamentation on the ceiling
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7 thoughts on “Letterman’s Diner- Kutztown, PA

  1. > Can anyone confirm Silk City as the builder?

    I definitely say O’Mahony.

    Dan’s Diner, a recently restored O’Mahony in Spencertown, NY (near Taconic Parkway) has the same gold leaf ceiling trim as in your photos. When I first saw it, I thought maybe Dan’s tried to “improve” the original by adding some ornamentation, but your photographs prove it’s original. (Unfortunately Dan’s is presently closed.)

    I’m glad for all the good diner owners out there, but sometimes they are told wrong information about their diners and believe it.

  2. Thanks, Glen. If you have pictures of the ceiling trim on Dan’s, I’d love to see it.

    They were told the manufacturer, as I understand it, by the town historian. The other diner in town is a Silk City, so they probably got their wires crossed.

  3. I felt it was important to let you all know that the name of the gentleman in the black & white photo with glasses is Joe Blatt. He and his wife were the owners for much of the 50’s 60’s &70’s and part of the 80’s. He cooked and his wife Gloria was the main waitress. there use to be an adjacent dinning room in the brick building.
    Gloria never wrote down an order. she did everything from ,memory and she never made a mistake. Joe always made great meals

    Jim Schlegel

  4. Hi there. I stumbled upon your blog through the Fedora Lounge and I couldn’t believe I recognized so many places on here! My boyfriend lives in Maryland though and works in DC and we’ve been to many of these diners on late night excursions. I’m from Reading, but live and attend college in Kutztown. . I literally work a block away from Letterman’s. I’ve never managed to make it there somehow, but now I’ve got some ambition too. However, I practically live at the Airport Diner throughout the school year. Try the spinach and artichoke dip next time. Delish’!

    Anyway, I just wanted to comment and say hello. It’s nice to see someone appreciates these little treasures too. :)

  5. hot waitresses, best breakfast in the area. bring a friend to share.
    top secret, once a month Halupki. best you can find. not just a great meal. but good entertainent. if you want wing, Doug says go to Basin Street.

  6. Pingback: 412 Diner – Tonawanda, NY « Diner Hunter

  7. joe and gloria did a great bussiness but when there memu was just eggs and bacon and ham and just white toast it must have been a easy way of doing things like some of you local’s say if you ain’t dutch you ain’t much guess us COALCRACKER’S CAN’T DO NOTHING RIGHT!!!!!!!!!!!!

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