Skip to main content

Diner Ahoy

June 2024
1min read

Richard J. S. Gutman’s article on the diner in the April issue ("American Made") brings to mind a time before World War II when Elliott Bay off Seattle’s waterfront was well stocked with delicious kings and silvers the whole summer long. On any morning there would be upward of five hundred rowboats out there trolling back and forth. No outboards; only the low squeak of oars in oarlocks could be heard. The sun rising on Puget Sound with snowcapped mountains east and west was a beautiful sight.

What does this have to do with a diner? Well, an enterprising fry cook anchored one in the midst of the boats. His diner was about thirty by thirty feet, built like a houseboat on logs, open on three sides with counters and stools and with the cooks inside. When the smell of bacon frying and coffee brewing drifted over the water, it was very hard to find room to tie up a boat and get some breakfast.

Enjoy our work? Help us keep going.

Now in its 75th year, American Heritage relies on contributions from readers like you to survive. You can support this magazine of trusted historical writing and the volunteers that sustain it by donating today.