Sunday, February 12, 2012

followup on Connecticut Ward & Dickinson

In 1964, the Ward & Dickinson was replaced by a diner that came to Meriden via Hartford, CT.
Some brief history of the diner. In January, 1931, it was announced that Fred Klett had to file a building permit for a diner that was arriving from Silver Creek, NY in about a week. Klett committed suicide in 1936, and his wife ran the diner until November, 1938 when it was sold to Wilson Veillette who ran the diner until about 1956 when he sold it to Clifford Hourigan who replaced the diner in 1963. The article said the diner was being demolished. So my theory of this being the diner that is currently in Willimantic is probably not good. But you never know.
This story does leave a few more questions to search concerning Klett.
Klett ran diners in Hartford, CT and Detroit, MI before coming back to Meriden to open the Ward & Dickinson. Did he have other Wards in Hartford and Detroit? also, in 1916 he had a "Uneeda Lunch" for four years, which he was selling. Uneeda was a popular lunch car name, which was also used by a few Closson Lunch Wagons at times. Might this explain why he was familiar with Ward & Dickinson. Of course, he could have also seen the factory traveling back form Detroit by car on US Route 20. Hartford supposedly had a Ward & Dickinson for sale in the 1940s, so Klett's name will have to be researched in Hartford.

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