Las Vegas strip, 1965

Las Vegas strip, 1965

Collection of Denise Scott Brown

Franchising increased after 1950 and offered Americans the opportunity to own a small business. Franchises were also a good deal for parent companies, shifting much of the risk to proprietors while requiring them to adhere to certain standards for branding and service.

Kentucky Fried Chicken

In the mid-1950s, Kentucky Fried Chicken founder Harland Sanders, and his first franchisee, Pete Harman, innovated cooking methods and insisted that local owners maintain service and stick to the “original recipe.” Sanders succeeded through standardizing his product and making his brand reliable.

Kentucky Fried Chicken weathervane, 1960s

Chicken bucket, about 1969

Franchise Brochure, 1961

Modern Franchising, 1965

Modern Franchising, 1965

Howard Johnson’s

Howard Johnson’s dinnerware underscored the company’s relationship to travel. The distinctive colors and colonial revival buildings also distinguished the brand. HoJo’s started as a clam shack in Quincy, Massachusetts, in the 1920s, survived the Great Depression, and expanded its restaurants and hotels along the interstate highway system in the 1950s.

Howard Johnson’s children’s plate, 1950s–1960s

Howard Johnson’s platter, 1950s–1960s

Howard Johnson’s hotel keys, 1960s–1970s

Howard Johnson’s 5-year employee bracelet, 1970s

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