Famous Restaurant Chains That Went Out of Business

Howard Johnson’s

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Founded in the 1920s by entrepreneur Howard Johnson, “HoJo’s,” as it’s been called colloquially, began life as a soda fountain and lunch counter before expanding into a full-fledged restaurant chain. By 1954, the chain had 400 locations in 32 states, ballooning up to 605 by 1961.

The restaurant’s signature dishes included the Ipswich Clam Plate, along with a variety of sandwiches including the Western, consisting of, simply, lettuce and mayo on bread. Unfortunately, Howard Johnson’s began to lose business to fast food chains like McDonald’s in the 1970s, causing this mainstay of American cuisine to shut down.