RESTAURANTS / 1950-1959



Featured Developer:

Glen Bell
Glen had a significant role in the beginnings of many fast food restaurants.  He is one of the many pioneers that helped develop the fast food industry to where it is today.

At 23 years old Glen Bell opted not to open a miniature golf course and opened his first restaurant instead. It was a hot dog stand in San Bernardino, CA named Bell's Drive-In.

He eventually expanded his menu and opened a few more "
Bell's Burgers" in San Bernardino and the surrounding area.   He served hamburgers, hotdogs and even personally developed a chili dog's sauce for chili dogs that would later become Taco Bell's taco sauce. 

Having new competition from Maurice and Dice McDonald and their newly opened "McDonald's" also in San Bernardino, Glen began experimenting with adding tacos to his menu.  The tacos were a hit and in 1954 and 1955 he opened 3 Taco Tia restaurants dedicated to serving his tacos.

HistoryNeal Baker, a friend of Glen who had helped him build his first few locations had decided to try his hand in the business and opened "Baker's" a successful California franchise.

Glen opened a Bell's Burgers location in Barstow and convinced his employee Ed Hackbarth to move up to Barstow and run it.  Ed successfully ran the location after they changed it into a Taco Tia he and eventually leased the location from Glen and started a new restaurant called "Del Taco".  Years later Dick Naugle, while installing equipment for the first Del Taco drive thru, would become interested in the business and would team up with Harold Butler from "Denny's" and open up a taco place called "Naugles."

Glen loved the food business and eventually convinced his commissary manager, John Gallardi to open a restaurant of his own.  Glen's wife Martha provided the name for the new hot dog stand as well as helped develop the menu.  It was called "Der Weinerschnitzel."

After Glen's partner announced that he didn't want to expand the concepts too quickly, Glen cut himself loose by selling his interest in his restaurants and moved to LA and opened a new concept called El Taco.  In order to expand quicker he took new partners and opened more locations.  They built a commissary and business plan to accommodate growing into over 100 units.  They did very well but eventually Glen decided that he didn't want any partners and wanted to go out on his own.

He sold the El Tacos to his partners and built the first Taco Bell in Downey, CA in 1962.  He quickly expanded to 8 locations (which are still open today) and sold his first franchise to Kermit Becky in 1964. 

1950 Arctic Circle Don Carlos Edwards Salt Lake City, UT www.arcticcirclerest.com
  Whataburger Harmon Dobson Corpus Christi, TX www.whataburger.com
  Dunkin Donuts Bill Rosenberg - www.dunkindonuts.com
1951 Jack in the Box Robert Peterson CA www.jackinthebox.com
Bakers Neal Baker Rialto, CA www.bakersdrivethru.com
Cozzoli's Mr. Cozzoli - www.cozzsolis.com
1952 KFC Colonel Sanders Corbin, KY www.kfc.com
  Churchs Chicken George Church San Antonio, TX www.churchs.com
  Fatburger Lovie Yancey Los Angeles, CA www.fatburger.com
1953 Denny's Harold Butler Lakewood, CA www.dennys.com
1954 Burger King James Mctomore & Dave Edgerton Miami, FL www.burgerking.com
  Et Torito Larry Cano Encino, CA www.eltorito.com
  Taco Tia Glen Bell San Bernardino, CA  
  Shakeys Sherwood Johnson - www.shakeys.com
  Polcaris - - www.polcaris.com 
1956 El Taco Glen Bell Long Beach, CA  
  Burger Chef Frank and Donald Thomas Indianapolis, IN  
1958 IHOP Al Lapin Toluca Lake, CA www.ihop.com
  Sizzler - Culver City, CA www.sizzler.com
  Pizza Hut - Wichita, KS www.pizzahut.com
  Sbarro Gennaro Sbarro Brookly, NY www.sbarro.com
  Village Inn Meron Anderson & Jim Mola Denver, CO www.villageinnrestaurants.com
1959 Little Caesars - Garden City, MI www.littlecaesars.com
Round Table Pizza William Larson Menlo Park, CA www.roundtable.com
Taco Time Ron Fredrick Eugene, OR www.tacotime.com
Bickford's Pancake House Harold Bickford Peabody, MA www.bickfords.com
Chuck's Steakhouse Chuck Rolles Waikiki, HA www.chuckssteakhouse.com

1950 Carl's Jr., Anaheim, CA
1952 Carl's Jr. puts a star on their signposts
1954 Danny's Donuts Changes to Danny's Coffee Shop
  Howard Johnson's has 400 restaurants in 32 states
1955 McDonalds is purchased by Ray Crock, Headquarters moved to Des Plaines, IL
  Glen Bell gets divorces, wife gets Bellís Burgers
  Nathan's Famous Hot Dog's Opens it's 2nd Location
1958 Burger Chef opens first official Restaurant at 1300 W. 16th St in Indianapolis - 7 more followed in 1958
1959 Danny's Coffee Shop changes to Denny's

Also at this time in History
Other Brands: 1958- Ruffles Potato Chips are introduced
Other Things: 1952- The first birth control pill is introduced
  1957- Inaugurating a new era in exploration, the U.S.S.R. launches Sputnik I and II, the
     first earth satellites.
  1957- Dr. Seuss publishes the captivating The Cat in the Hat
  1959- In January, Alaska becomes the 49th U.S. state, followed by Hawaii, in August.

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