Diners of Amherst, MA

Any further information/photos/postcards from any of these?

1936
Cramers Diner – 9 S. Pleasant
Deady’s Dining Car – 13-1/2 Pleasant
Deady’s Dining Car – 100 Pleasant
8588501Goldbug

1952
Dalton’s Diner – 428 N. Pleasant
Joe’s Diner – 21 S. Pleasant
Miss Amherst Diner – 35 N. Pleasant- Now McMurphy’s
St. Regis Diner – 455 N. Pleasant

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Little Tavern and J. Edgar Hoover

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Image: “Female Trouble”, 1974, John Waters, director

Harry Duncan founded Little Tavern at the age of 28 and moved to Washington DC in 1928, settling in the then brand new “New Quinn Apartments” at 3800 New Hampshire Ave NW (apt 103). As the chain grew and prospered, he moved to 6805 45th St. Chevy Chase, MD in 1930, and was living at 4807 Colorado Ave NW Washington DC in 1935. Through the 1940s, he lived at the Kennedy Warren 3313 Connecticut Ave NW.

In the early 1950s, Duncan moved to 4955 Linnean Dr. NW, a house that backed up to 4936 30th Pl NW, the home of J. Edgar Hoover. Whether they bonded over their politics or their love of horse racing is unknown, but the two became fast friends. Every Saturday, Duncan, Hoover and Clyde Tolson would meet for breakfast at Hoover’s house,  visit one of the horse tracks in the area (Duncan specifically opened Little Tavern locations near Pimlico and Laurel race tracks), then return to DC for dinner at Duncan’s house.  The three dined at each others houses every night of the week and had a rotating schedule where each would cook two nights, with Hoover making up for the extra meal with Saturday’s breakfast. This arrangement lasted for the better part of twenty years, until Hoover’s death in 1972.

“In the box with G-men Hoover and Tolson was Harry Duncan, an earnest horseplayer who gets his betting money from a chain of hamburger stands, all called Little Tavern. Athough he had the advice and counsel of the heads of the FBI, plus tips from a dozen senators and Gov. Theodore Roosevelt McKeldin of Maryland, who paid visits to the Hoover Box, the Hamburger King took a painful fiscal beating.
He was a miserable and downcast man when he left the track with his hosts. Even the sage observation of J. Edgar Hoover that there would always be another day failed to comfort him. He looked as if he was sure this was to be the last.
They had ridden but a short distance when they came to one of his hamburger joints. Mr. Duncan commanded the chauffeur to stop. He dashed into the Little Tavern and remained there about five minutes. When he emerged, he was smiling again.
Director Hoover asked what caused the pleasant transition. ‘Oh,’ replied Mr. Duncan modestly, ‘my great business acumen has come to my rescue. I told them in there to leave the pickle off the hamburgers for a few days until I get even.'” – Panama City News Herald, May 29, 1954

Hoover Tells Boys of High Crime Costs
“The cost of crime in the United States is nearly twice the cost of education, J. Edgar Hoover, FBI director, told an audience of trustees of the Boys Clubs of Washington last night. Hoover, speaking at a dinner meeting in the Shoreham Hotel honoring founders of the Silver Spring Boys club, said only $1 is spent on education for every $1.89 spent fighting the forces of crime. The Nations crime bill of 20 billion dollars a year is 10 times the amount given to churches, he declared. Experence has shown that whenever a boys club has been established there is a marked drop in juvenile delinquency in the area, Hoover said. ‘The greatest service we can give the youth today is to give them their justly deserved heritage,’ he added. He congratulated the trustees on, ‘the magnificent civic contribution’ of the club. Hoover presented a plaque to Harry F. Duncan, the original chairman of the Silver Spring Boys Club and one of the 34 founders honored last night.” – The Washinton Times Herald, October 28, 1954

“G Man J. Edgar Hoover may be asked to investigate his best friend, Harry Duncan, who runs the Little Tavern hamburger stands. The two men are inseparable companions. However, the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has complained that some Little Taverns have refused to serve Negroes. The complaint may be forwarded to the FBI.” – (Associated Press story, 1957)

“. . .At the unveiling of a portrait of Silver Spring Boy’s Club leader Harry F. Duncan. Hoover, a personal friend of Duncan, said it is preferable to build good citizens through boys’ clubs than to rehabilitate broken lives. The ceremonies took place at the Harry F Duncan building” – (Act of Treason: The Role of J. Edgar Hoover in the Assassination of John F Kennedy by Mark North)

“On Saturdays, Tolson and two other men, Harry Duncan and George Allen, met at Hoover’s for breakfast. after the Director’s SAC delivered Bureau mail, the foursome set out for the track, two agents close behind in a support car. Once there, Hoover and Tolson retreated to their own skybox to watch the races. Presumably lunch was taken in the executive lounge atop the enclosed stands. After the races, they went to one of the four’s house for dinner.” – (Act of Treason: The Role of J. Edgar Hoover in the Assassination of John F Kennedy by Mark North)

“Harry Duncan, a neighbor of Hoover’s, was a close friend for many years: “We spent many, many very pleasant and wonderful years together. He was good at any kind of talk. He was the greatest guy there was for conversation. And he was quite a jokester and trickster. He got a big kick out of life and joking with people. He was a great practical joker. (p.22, The Director: an oral biography of J. Edgar Hoover, Ovid Demaris)

James Craford (Hoover’s driver): Saturday morning, there probably would be Mr. Harry Dunca – he lived behind Mr. Hoover – Mr. Tolson, probably Mr. George Allen would meet at Mr Hoover’s house for breakfast, then they’d go to the races, wherever they were running: Bowie, Pimlico, Charlestown, Laurel, Havre de Grace – it’s closed now. There is something going the year around. After the races we’d go to Mr. Duncan’s house for dinner. Then on Monday nigh, Mr Duncan and Mr. Hoover would eat at Mr. Tolson’s house, and that would be all for the three of them for that week”(p35, The Director: an oral biography of J. Edgar Hoover, Ovid Demaris)

“Hoover shared his last days with a few friends. ‘You are honored by your friends,’ he liked to repeat, ‘and you are distinguished by your enemies.’ He was ‘very distingished,’ he’d boast.  But he was honored as well.  He spent ost of his leisure time with two old friends, bachelors like himself, Clyde Tolson and Harry Duncan.  Their evening meal together became ritualized.  On Mondays and Fridays, Tolson was the host.  Duncan had Wednesdays and Saturdays.  It was Hoover’s turn on Sunday nights and Saturday mornings.  He would plan the meals himself, writing out the menus in his shaky, old man’s hand for his housekeeper, Anna Fields.  Saturday usually was reserved for Hoover’s most celebrated vice: the horse races.  The three bachelors would meet at Hoover’s home for breakfast, and then proceed to Maryland’s Pimilico racetrack.  He never bet more than $2 on a race”  – Aug 19 1973, the Orlando Sentinel

Little Tavern in Baltimore

While there were more Little Taverns built in Washington DC than in Baltimore, the rapid development in the District claimed many of those over the years, and the chain , especially in its later years, came to be closely tied to the cultural identity of Baltimore.

As the complete list of Little Tavern locations has grown, it has also become somewhat more convoluted. I have broken it down into regions and added some more short-lived locations that I’ve recently found. As always, this is a work in progress, so if you have any further insight or photos, give me a shout!

No. 1
1/2 East Mount Royal Ave., Baltimore, MD
Originally built in castle style, remodeled into tudor cottage style
Opened June 2, 1930, lost Lease April 1981
Demolished early 1980s
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

No. 2
433 Merryman Lane, Baltimore, MD (Greenmount Ave, 32nd St.)
Still standing
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Photo by Doug Hansen, used with permission

No 3.
908 W. 36th St. Baltimore MD
Opened Jan 29, 1931, no longer a Little Tavern by the 1960s
The first Little Tavern to be built in tudor style
Still standing
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Photo (C) Michael G. Stewart/ dinerhunter.com

No. 4
506 E 25th St, Baltimore, MD
Opened March 21, 1931, Closed 1932 due to lease problem
Bought c.1932 by Joshua Thomas Gillelan and remodeled. Has been operating as the Stone Tavern since the 1930s
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Photo (C) Michael G. Stewart/ dinerhunter.com

No. 5
523 Conkling Street, Baltimore, MD
Opened August 1, 1931. Closed early 1990s.
Demolished in 2003
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

The Baltimore Grill / Little Tavern Tap Room
Opened Jan 13, 1934. Lasted at least until 1937.
Served liquor, opened shortly after repeal of prohibition. Possibly a store front location

No. 6
208 N. Eutaw St., Baltimore, MD.
Opened Jan 2, 1936

No. 7
519 East 25th Street, Baltimore MD
Opened April 11, 1936
Filming location for “Dawn Davenport, Career Girl” scene of the John Waters movie, “Female Trouble”
Still standing.
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

No. 8
923 West North Ave, Baltimore, MD
Opened March 9, 1937
Closed 1988. Entire area has been demolished and redeveloped
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

No. 9
3200 W. Belvedere Ave. Baltimore, MD
Opened late 1937
Across from Pimlico race track. Harry F. Duncan, founder of Little Tavern, was a major fan of horse racing and opened shops both here and down from the Laurel race track. After a day of losing big at the horse track in May of 1954 with his friends J. Edgar Hoover, Clyde Tolson and Theodore McKeldin,  Duncan had his limo stop at this location and told the Baltimore offices to “leave the pickles off the hamburgers for a few days until I get even”.
Dismantled around 2014
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

No. 10
2002 Harford Rd. Baltimore, MD
Opened early 1938
e-20th-st-google-maps
googlemaps, 2016

35 East North Avenue, Baltimore, MD
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Photo courtesy Rick Smith

2001 East Monument St, Baltimore, MD
Opened 1941. Partially demolished/converted to a Burger King in 2007
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Photo collection of Spencer Stewart

115 West Baltimore St. Baltimore MD
Property purchased Dec 21, 1939

10 Park Ave Baltimore, MD
Opened 1965. At the time of its opening, it was the 17th operating in Maryland. The numbering gets a little funny as things go on, as locations went out of business. After the 1930s, Little Tavern stopped putting the shop numbers on the signs, and only occasionally referred to them when opening new locations, though they didn’t maintain the original chronology.
Sold to the owners of the Lighthouse Restaurant in 1987
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Photo courtesy the Baltimore Museum of Industry

400 block of East Baltimore St., Baltimore MD
Storefront location. Closed after 1993
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

100 block Back River Neck Road, Essex, MD
Opened before 1980, closed after 1990.

10300 Little Patuxent Pkwy, Columbia, MD
The Mall in Columbia
Opened Sept 20, 1982

6414 Holabird Ave Baltimore, MD 21224
Exiting building, formerly a sandwich shop
At the time of its opening, it was the 13th operating in the Baltimore area.
Opened April 1983. Closed 2008, the last operating Little Tavern.
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2002. Creative Commons license. Photo by wikipedia user Munch10

201 E Pratt St, Baltimore, MD
Light Street Pavilion, second floor, Harborplace, Inner Harbor.
Opened 1984

2419 Frederick Ave., Baltimore MD
Westside Shopping Center
Opened 1985

3515 Eastern Ave Baltimore, MD
Storefront location, formerly a White Coffee Pot restaurant, going back to the 1930s.
Opened as a Little Tavern in the late ’70s- early 1980s, closed 2007
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Google maps streetview, 2007

The two locations in Towson, two locations in Annapolis, the location in Laurel, the one in Columbia, the one in Essex and the location in Glen Burnie fell under the management of the Baltimore office, while the two locations in Silver Spring, the one in Wheaton and the ones in Virginia fell under the management of Washington. I’m including the ones geographically closer to Baltimore in this list.

516 York Road, Towson, MD
Closed c.1987
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

1517 Joppa Road, Towson, MD
Opened between 1961 and 1964. Without any other images to confirm, I’m still not 100% sure this is the correct photo for this location. If so, this was Little Tavern’s first and only foray into more modern architecture.
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c.1964 Little Tavern company photo. Collection of Larry Collier

24 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd, Glen Burnie, MD
Storefront location, uniquely adapted to match company architecture
Opened 1952, demolished in 1981 for urban renewal project
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Little Tavern company photo.  Collection of Spencer Stewart

Little Tavern- the original Cheeseburger

Harry F. Duncan of Little Tavern claimed to have invented the cheeseburger in the 1920s, but I never put much faith in that claim. Many have made the same assertion with little proof, and it’s hard to imagine the concept of meat and cheese wouldn’t have been come up with independently in many places. Rite Spot of Pasadena claims 1926 with nothing to back up that date. O’Dell’s of Los Angeles claims 1928, though the menu they use as evidence dates to the 1930s. Kaelin’s of Louisville claims 1934.

Today I found the first actual proof, an ad from June of 1932 from Little Tavern, advertising the Cheeseburger (note that they have it listed as trademarked)as being exclusively available at Little Tavern. As far as I can tell, this is the first time the word was used in a newspaper. After this initial run of ads, Little Tavern never tried to capitalize or publicize their invention. It’s interesting in this 1932 ad that the cheeseburger is double the price of the standard hamburger.
cheeseburger

Little Tavern- The early years

The earliest years of Little Tavern, Harry F. Duncan’s chain of hamburger stands in St. Louis Missouri are still somewhat of a mystery. In an interview given by Duncan in the 1970s, 50 years after the fact, he says one sentence about operating five locations of baby beef restaurants, but it’s unclear as to whether he meant the name of the restaurant was “Baby Beef Burgers” or whether he was describing his product as small using the word “baby”. Either way, this one sentence has been re-quoted for decades like a game of telephone, with each subsequent news story or book altering it slightly. In my extensive research, I haven’t found anything concrete on the 1925-1927 St. Louis years, no photos, no street addresses. Little Tavern company documents from the 1930s make no mention of the former chain. I’m hopeful some information may exist at the Andrew County Museum in Missouri.

Little Tavern No. 1
510 West Broadway Louisville, KY
Opened March 24, 1927, closed c. 1950
The building was demolished by 1955. The Al J. Schneider Co building, later known as the Bank of Louisville building, was built on the site in 1960.
no-1
Company photo from 1930s Little Tavern publication, courtesy Larry Collier.

Little Tavern No. 2
414 E Broadway, Louisville, KY
Opened October 8, 1927, closed 1941
Bought by James and Donna Spellman,who operated it as the Little Manor System Restaurant for 32 years.
no-2
Caufield & Shook photo, commissioned by Harry F. Duncan of Little Tavern in 1928. ULPA CS 097019 Courtesy the collection of the University of Louisville.

Little Tavern No. 3
652 S 18th St, Louisville, KY
Opened Dec 22, 1927, closed 1941
Operated in 1942 by former Little Tavern employee Leonard Higdon as Little Castle Hamburgers No. 2
Operated in 1946 by Charles R. Melven as the Castle Inn no. 1
Enlarged in 1958, operated by Mary H. Sines as Mary’s Grill
Operated in 1972 as Bar B Q King
Operated in 1980 by James Johnson as The Country Pit
no-3-edit
Left image, Company photo from 1930s Little Tavern publication, courtesy Larry Collier. Right Image, Caufield & Shook photo, commissioned by Harry F. Duncan of Little Tavern in 1928. ULPA CS 097020 Courtesy the collection of the University of Louisville.

Little Tavern No. 4
2120 Bardstown Road, Louisville, KY
Opened March 24, 1928, closed August 1935
Purchased by Herman A. Parris, a former employee of Little Tavern, in 1935 and reopened as White House Shop no. 1. Parris would go on to open White House Shops restaurants at 333 W Oak, 2525 Grinstead Dr., 2810 Taylorsville Road, and 2292 Bardstown Road (a former Little Mansion System location), with an office at the rear of 2112 Bardstown Road.
This may be the only former Little Tavern location in Louisville still standing, currently operating as an Insurance office, directly to the left of Great Flood Brewing.
no-4
Image: Google Maps, 2016

Little Tavern No. 5
417 W. Chestnut, Louisville, KY
Opened May 17, 1928, closed 1943-1944
Bought in 1944 by William Adkins
Operating as Eddie L. Rivers Restaurant in 1946
1951 George Karras, owner
1952 Operating as the Dagwood Grill
1957 Operating as Dandee Hamburgers No. 2 (there was another Dandee Hamburgers at 454 S. 5th)
1965 Operating as Pattie’s Grill
no-5-edit
Left Image: from news story on Marshall DeVore, who later managed the Little Tavern in Laurel, Maryland. Right Image: Company photo from 1930s Little Tavern publication, courtesy Larry Collier.

Little Tavern No. 6
129 S. 2nd St., Louisville, KY
Opened May 15, 1930, Closed 1932
1933- Liberty Barber Shop
1934 – L.K. Diefenbach Restaurant
1937 – L.K. Diefenbach Restaurant
1941- Snack Sandwich Shop
1946 – Robert O’Banion Lunch
1952- Kidd’s Grill
1958 – Chuck’s Quick Lunch
no-6
Caufield & Shook photo, commissioned by Harry F. Duncan of Little Tavern in 1930. ULPA CS 111433. Courtesy the collection of the University of Louisville.

Little Tavern
1141 Dixie Highway, Louisville, KY
Found in directories starting in the mid 1950s, It’s unclear whether this was associated with the hamburger chain, but it’s more likely this was a bar

Little Tavern and White Castle both opened their first locations in Louisville in 1927 and maintained a similar presence in those early years. Within a few years, the area was flooded by other hamburger restaurants. Interestingly, while White Castle has called all competitors imitators since the early days, many of these Louisville hamburger stands of the 1930s riffed on the Little Tavern image as much as on that of White Castle.

White Castle
no. 1 729 W Broadway. Opened August 1927, remodeled 1937
no. 2 434  W. Liberty . Opened October 1927, remodeled 1931
no. 3 803 E. Broadway.  Opened November 29 1927
no. 4 100 W. Broadway. Opened 1928
no. 5 565 S. 3rd St. Opened March 13 1928
no. 6 566 S. 5th St. Opened May 11, 1928. Closed March 1933. Later operated as the White Swan System. Still standing, as Pesto’s Italian Restaurant
no. 7 105 E. Market.  Opened July 17 1928. Still a White Castle
no. 8 Woodbourne and Bardstown Road. Opened June 1935. Moved in 1945 to become no. 11
no. 9 3809 Frankfort Ave. St. Matthews, KY. Opened May 27, 1939
no. 10  793 Eastern Pkwy. Opened July 12, 1939. Still a White Castle
no. 12  1450 Bardstown Rd.  Opened June 21, 1956.
no. 19 Opened August 13, 1978

Little Castle -Founded by former Little Tavern employee Leonard Higdon
No. 1 116 S. 26th, Louisville, KY. (operating as Nic-Nac no. 1 in 1940. Nic Nac No. 2 was at 2824 W. Broadway)Location burned in 1945 and was rebuilt. Operated through until at least 1957. In 1964, operating as Ray’s No. 3. In 1975 operating as Beef Burger Restaurant. In 1977, operating as Ann’s Grill, in 1978 as Mom’s Restaurant
No. 2 652 S 18th St, Louisville, KY (formerly Little Tavern no. 3) see above for further names
No. 3 315 S. 26th St. Louisville KY, opened 1942. (Originally the Snappy Snack no. 4. Other Snappy Shack locations at Bardstown Rd. and Roanoke (no. 1), Hill and 16th (no. 2) and 2512 W. Broadway (no.3) Operating in 1946 as the Castle Inn. Later operated as the White Way System no. 2

Little Chef Sandwich Shop 3283 Taylor Blvd, Louisville, KY
Sued in 1953 by Frisch’s Big boy over their use of the term “Big Boy” to describe their hamburgers

Little Cottage Hamburger Shop/ Little Cottage System/ Little Cottage Lunch No. 1 1707 Mellwood Ave, Louisville, KY (1942)
No. 2 1227 S. 28th (1951)
No. 3 3031 Taylor Blvd (1952)

Little Manor System 414 E. Broadway, Louisville KY (in former Little Tavern no. 2) Operated c. 1942-c.1974

Little Mansion System Inc. (originally Lincoln Log System, changed name in 1939) Filed injunction in 1940 against Dipsy Doodle Snack bar after planning to open three restaurants also using the Dipsy Doodle name. 1941- secretery John S. Petot. Liquedated 1942
Locations at 900 W. Main St., 2292 Bardstown Road, 3626 Lexington, 1822 S. 3rd

Little Palace Hamburgers 1224 W. Walnut, Louisville KY
Little Shanty System 604 W. Walnut, Louisville, KY

White Comet 420 S. 3rd, Louisville KY
White Crescent System 1043 E Main, 1057 E Main, 1707 Mellwood Ave.
White Cottage Inn 1353 S. Shelby Louisville, KY
White Cottage 4044 Preston Highway Louisville, KY
White Horse 515 W. Broadway, Louisville, KY

White House Shops,founded 1935 by Herman A. Parris, Location no. 1 2120 Bardstown Rd., formerly Little Tavern No. 4, Location no. 2 333 W. Oak Location no. 3 2525 Grinstead Dr., No. 4 2810 Taylorsville Rd., 2292 Bardstown Rd. (formerly a White Mansion System location)
Renamed Hap’s White House Drive In Restaurants in the 1950s. Location no. 1 expanded next door in 1950s, called Hap’s Big Burger Drive In. That location later became the Twig and Leaf, still operating today.

White Hut 617 S 2nd Louisville KY
White Manor 1707 Mellwood Ave.
White Palace 223 W Liberty Louisville KY
White Spot System Hamburgers 1501-1/2 W. Market 228 N. Main
White Swan 566 S. 5th Louisville, KY
White Tavern 216-1/2 South Limestone, Lexington, KY, 113 North Limestone Street, Lexington, KY, 265 East Main Street, Lexington, KY, 518 West Main Street, Lexington, KY, 327 West Main Street Danville, KY, 308 W Washington Street, Charleston, WV, 1215 Washington Street, Charleston, WV
White Way System 1101 W. Broadway, 315 S. 26th

More on the Road Ramblers

In about a week and a half, my fiance Alex and I will be leaving on a six month journey, crisscrossing America documenting small towns, through photography, illustration, interviews and the collection of artifacts. Think WPA photography meets Charles Kuralt. We call ourselves the Road Ramblers.
This project has been in the works since last fall. A couple of things in our lives happened all at once. Alex and I had been traveling extensively, picking for my vintage clothing business and for her senior thesis photo series focusing on boom towns in Montana, falling more and more in love with the places we were visiting and exploring. A TV show about vintage Americana I had been slated to host fell through after working through the summer with a production team in New York. My architecture thesis on authenticity took a turn toward examining places with a past vs. homogeneous sprawl. We got to talking about what the next step was- where do these projects go from here?

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And so, in early December, we bought thirdhand shuttlebus and started the process of gutting it out. After months of throwing away our money at secondrate motels every weekend on our trips through the west, we knew if we were going to pull off a trip of the length we were planning, we would need someplace comfortable, someplace that felt like home. We’re both the kind of people who, if we need something done, do it ourselves, so having the blank slate of the bus appealed to us. And starting way back with Further, there’s just something more romantic about a bus conversion than an RV. Now that it’s done, we’re fully capable of living off grid, with solar panels, batteries and an inverter, gas stove, composting toilet, foot pump water and a fancy cooler. We’ve got the work space to handle any and all of our needs while we’re on the road. With the bus finished and both of us recently graduated (Masters in Architecture for me, Bachelors in Photography for Alex), and everything we own either being sold off or put into storage, we’re just about ready to go.
It’s a funny thing tackling America. So many people have done it, from “On the Road” to “Blue Highways”, “Easy Rider” to “Pee Wee’s Big Adventure”. These days, there’s no shortage of people on instagram and the like, traveling full time in their Vanagons. What seems to be missing in these current projects is any sense of purpose or product. These are hipsters, out to find themselves, sponsored by outdoor equipment companies. At least the first generation hippie travelers worked odd jobs or craft fairs along the way. Thankfully, we’ve already found ourselves and our project’s about something bigger.

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This is a time of huge change for small towns. Manufacturing has either left entirely or shifted to larger plants elsewhere. Farming on an industrial scale has changed the way the town itself works. Other towns were bypassed decades ago by interstate highways and are slowly falling by the wayside. Meanwhile, new construction continues to sprawl, leaving with placeless places- strip malls, suburbia and endless chain restaurants. Pop culture idealizes the small town, but in a nostalgic, shallow way. The current trend in photography of “ruin porn” objectifies and exploits post industrial landscapes without addressing any of their content. Despite the transitions so many small towns are going through, these are places near and dear to our hearts. This is the fabric of America, and we try to come at it with an honest eye. Alex is heavily influenced by 1970s vernacular photography- think Stephen Shore, William Eggleston.

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In addition to her photography, I will be doing illustrations as we go (take a look above). As we travel, we will be conducting an interview series (think Storycorps or WPA interviews) as we go, to try to further get our finger on a regional pulse. We’ll be posting these on a youtube channel.
At the end of all this, we plan on taking our writings, photography, illustrations, portraits, quotes, experiences, etc. and compiling it all into a comprehensive photo book. This is where you come in.
All of this is a massive undertaking (but we’ve never been ones to make things easy on ourselves), and the books and web series are going to be hugely labor intensive and costly. We need your help to make these things a reality and to share them back with you. We recently launched a kickstarter to offset some of the costs of the production of the book and online components. Remember, if we don’t make the goal, we get nothing, so anything helps. We’d love to have you as a backer and to be able to bring our explorations directly to your computer.
https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/263559793/road-ramblers
Spencer Stewart
And be sure to follow along at
https://www.instagram.com/roadramblers/
http://www.theroadramblers.com/
https://www.facebook.com/theroadramblers/

The Road Ramblers

I’ve been a bit irregular in posting over here as of late and here’s why- we’ve been working on a big, super exciting new project- the Road Ramblers.

Since November, we’ve been planning. We bought an old bus in early December 2015 and have been working on gutting and converting it, readying it for a six month trip around the country, during which we will be documenting small towns through interviews, photography, video, art and the collection of artifacts. All of this will be compiled into a web series and then a book, if you’re able to help. We have exciting premiums in addition to the book- namely original art and photography. We’d appreciate your help and love for you to follow along!
Thanks- Alex and Spencer

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/263559793/road-ramblers

Updates on dinerhunter will be sporadic, probably more confined to the east coast leg of the trip when I’ll be able to return to the original mission of this site- diners.

For regular updates from the road through Road Ramblers, check in at theroadramblers.com, our Instagram, and our facebook.
 photo its here.jpg