Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Ayers Diner

1947 Charles C. Ayers (1908 -1983) with his wife (Mary Cicatelli Ayers) and children (Paul, Charles and Margaret) opened the Ayers Diner at North Salisbury Boulevard and London Street in Salisbury, Maryland.  It had a capacity for about 44 people.

1949 they had a new dining room (22x36 block and stucco) added to the diner that could seat 66 people.  It almost doubled the capacity of the restaurant.  The Dining room was constructed by Ed Wainwright, who would later construct and operate the State Line Motel, Restaurant etc complex at the State Line in Delmar.  

In 1952 Mr. Ayers replaced the old diner with a new stainless steel Mountain View Diner made in New Jersey (see above).  It was moved from the factory in Singac, New Jersey to Salisbury at 12 miles an hour.  The new diner at a cost of $75,000 was 66 by 17 feet and seated 102 people. It is the diner most people associate with Ayers Diner due to the postcard images. Mr. Ayers chose a light rose color scheme inside the diner and the 12 waitresses wore uniforms that reflected that color scheme. The restaurant was open 24-hours a day.  The light rose color is also the color reflected in the postcards of the diner. A block and stucco addition was added later.

The Mountain View Diner Company would cease operation in 1957 after making about 400 diners over its 20 year history.  They were makers of the classic prefabricated stainless steel diner with a formica counter and bolt down stools, tile or terazza floor, and formica tables.  

In 1952 the businesses that were around Ayers Diner were E. S. Adkins, The Star Laundry, Pete’s Amoco, Sweetheart Bakeries, Peninsular Roofing, Frank Mohler Atlantic, and the North End Esso,

In 1956 he opened a second Ayers Diner in Easton, Maryland.

1961 Mr Ayers leased the restaurant in Salisbury and moved to Easton where he operated the second Ayers Diner.

As you can tell from the 1952 photograph above there was very little front space for parking.  Up until 1963 parking was allowed on each side of Salisbury Boulevard and the businesses on RT13 didn’t have to have a parking lot or at least not a very large parking lot. In fact when Charles Ayers moved the new diner in to the spot in 1952 he moved it 12 feet closer to Salisbury Boulevard.   In 1963 Mayor Frank Morris did away with on street parking on RT13.  This led to a lot of protest from business owners particularly Charles Ayers, but there was no longer parking on RT13.

By the late 1960s maybe early 1970s the restaurant shutdown.  In 1975 the diner had been moved from its London Street location to the Stateline motel on RT13 a few block south of its original London street location, to be used as a diner. The location and whereabouts of the diner is unknown after 1975.

Above the present building on the property where the diner stood.

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