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Looking back, it was kind of a surprising place for a Kentucky Fried Chicken

Old Kentucky Fried Chicken

The folks at the Boston City Archives wonder if you can place this photo. See it larger.

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Looks like it's now a jewlery store.

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I never would have guessed Charles Street, but you totally called that one!

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Seriously impressive work. So little information AND it was before Charles was one way..in the opposite direction.

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Something about it just looked like Charles St to me (flat, brick buildings, brick sidewalks, gas lamp, retail), so I just went down the street in Street View looking for a 1-story building until I found the one with the matching building next door.

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The gas lamp gave it away as Beacon Hill.

Old city directory says KFC was at 62 Charles St as of 1973.

Photo of the spot in 2010.

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Kentucky fried chicken on Charles Street,
The 1970s had very limited restaurant chains and KFC was one of them, among them were Friendlys, these places were considered very appealing places to eat, but their locations were mostly in suburban towns in Massachusetts and not inner Boston city neighborhoods. McDonalds was a big deal when they first opened in 1975 in Central Sq in East Boston. Now chain restaurants seem to be everywhere.

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'' BOSTON
Chicago invented deep-dish pizza, but it took an entrepreneur from Boston to serve up Windy City-style slices on the national stage. In the mid-1970s, Aaron Spencer owned more than 30 Kentucky Fried Chicken franchises in Greater Boston. When Spencer attended a franchisees’ meeting at a Chicago advertising agency, pizza from the original Uno location was part of the lunch spread......

Spencer formed a restaurant company to build corporate-owned units in Harvard Square and other Massachusetts locations. He expanded his former Kentucky Fried Chicken franchising office in West Roxbury to serve as Uno’s corporate office, where it remains to this day ''

http://www.patriotledger.com/article/20090408/news/304089501

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I'd guess Charles Street in the 1970s when it was one-way northbound from the Common to Charles Circle, before they reversed the direction of the street. These businesses would be on the left, just before the corner of Mount Vernon. Back in those days Beacon Hill was still something of a gay neighborhood (though folks were moving increasingly into the South End, Jamaica Plain and elsewhere), and I used to spend a lot of time in the neighborhood even though I never lived there: Charles Street Meetinghouse, Sporter's, the Esplanade...

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reversed direction of Charles street one night in 1982 without asking anyone. I wonder how that would work with todays beacon hill crowd?

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You can go the wrong way or the White way!

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that Boston's street signage was determined by a small tribe of elves or gnomes who roam the city at night moving the signs around on whatever whim strikes them.

They're most proud of the MFA sign in Packard's Corner, I hear.

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Prior to the change in direction, Charles Street was a bit of a highway leading to Charles Circle and from there to the major highways. The switch was considered a gift from White to his own neighbors.

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a lot of whom were gay lived there and hung out on Charles St. It was always fancy but boy...nothing like it is now--there were always a lot of shabby, more bohemian bits.

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We need a KFC/Taco Bell in the Copley area.

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Wendy's isn't enough?

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Sometimes you need to make a run for the border. Sometimes you need those herbs and spices.

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No, during my lunch break i'd love a few of their soft tacos or a KFC bowl. You'd figure there would be more fast food places in the area. Families with kids come for vacation and its a cheaper alternative than eating at a place such as Atlantic Seafood

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Or maybe just more mom and pop Mexican places, delis, etc.

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Boloco- wrap type things
b.good- burgers and other stuff seemingly healthy
tasty burger- yes, at the Back Bay T station, but a block from the square
Chipotle- at the old Burger King, if you wanted a more national chain

And that's just off the top of my head. I didn't even get into the sandwich places. Of course, in the summer there are the food trucks, and I would be remiss if I missed a cheap food option for those in the know- Star Market.

Of course, if you want KFC, you gotta have KFC.

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And you can pick up some sides at the salad bar or deli case. They also have a decent selection of Indian-style food in their hot food bar.

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Beacon Hill. Used to be all kinds of 'low class' establishments, like Dunkin Donuts, even a porn shop.

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There was also a Mr. Donut, a long forgotten chain, on Charles Street in those days. I liked their coffee much better than Dunkin Donuts.

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Lots of them -- all over Japan, seemingly. Lots of flavors (and varieties) never seen here in the USA, however.

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with the jaunty old pink and blue logo. And Sharif's which went on to be Rebecca's in the early 80s. Tons of antiques, Fischelson's the florist, a fish market...Charles Street Hardware, Gary Drug, and the Paramount have been the stalwarts, though today's Paramount is nothing like the greasy spoon that it once was.

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To the left of the KFC, you can see a Baskin-Robbins. My friends and I from MIT were regular patrons of the B-R around 1969-70, but I don't remember the KFC next door. This was one of the first Baskin-Robbins stores around greater Boston, and it was before the advent of fancier home-grown ice cream shops like Steve's.

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Thanks for playing, folks! Those of you that guessed Beacon Hill are correct. This is 64 Charles Street on January 14, 1973.

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Charles St, Ate there many times. Did it close?

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Just after 5PM every day folks would race down to Charles Circle to go to the highways, if you caught the lights just right you could sail all the way without slowing down. The reversal of the traffic direction was a good idea for the neighborhood, not for the commuters. It seems every time I drive down there now it seems I'm almost the only car on the road.

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Imagine what we could achieve if every street changed direction every block!

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"Coin-Op Dry Cleaning"?

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