Long John Silver's

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Long John Silver's, Inc. is a United States-based fast-food restaurant that specializes in seafood. The name and concept were inspired by Robert Louis Stevenson's book Treasure Island. Its headquarters are in Louisville, Kentucky.[2]

Contents

History

The first restaurant was opened in 1969 in Lexington, Kentucky. (The original location, on Southland Drive just off Nicholasville Road, was previously a seafood restaurant named the Cape Codder, which accounts for the Cape Cod style of LJS’s early chain restaurants.) Until its bankruptcy in 1998, Long John Silver's was a privately owned corporation. The chain began as a division of Jerrico, Inc., which also operated Jerry's Restaurants, a chain of family restaurants which also began in Lexington, and was very similar to Big Boy restaurants. Jerry's was located in the Midwest and South. When the company was sold in 1989, the Long John Silver's concept had far outgrown the Jerry's chain. Most of Jerry's 46 remaining locations were converted to Denny's by the new owners, with a handful staying under the original name, usually because there was already an existing Denny's nearby. Only a dozen or so, now called Jerry's J-Boy Restaurants, are still open in Kentucky and southern Indiana. LJS stores were largely unaffected by this move. (Many original LJS franchisees were also operators of Jerry's locations.)

Earlier restaurants were known for their Cape Cod-style buildings, blue roofs, small steeples, and nautically-themed decorations such as seats made to look like nautical flags. Most early restaurants also featured separate entrance and exit doors, a corridor-like waiting line area, food heaters that were transparent so customers could see the food waiting to be served, and a bell by the exit which customers could "ring if we did it well." Many of these buildings had dock-like walkways lined with pilings and thick ropes that wrapped around the building exterior. Somewhat newer restaurants kept the basic structural design and theme, but eliminated most of the interior features. The contemporary, multi-brand outlets do not use the blue roofed Cape Cod-style buildings. All locations continue to have the "ring if we did well" bell by the exit, a feature that was later copied by Arby's. Originally, the chain had a much larger focus on a pirate theme. For example, the chain used to offer small chicken drumsticks which they called "peg-legs".

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