Bill Reese's "World-Famous" Barbecue



I'm always intrigued by places that call themselves "World Famous" because, really — who says they are? Did the International Tribunal in The Hague hand down that decision?

But, judging from this tiny ad that ran in a 1958 issue of the Memphis Hotel & Motel Guide, a fellow named Bill Reese made that claim about the barbecue served from his humble drive-in establishment on Jackson Avenue.

And, to be fair, since I never dined there, who's to argue?

(Does anyone remember this place? Was it really that good?)

I can't say how long Reese stayed in business here — well, I could, but I don't feel like going to all that trouble. But sometime in the late 1960s the building was demolished to make way for one of our city's first Kentucky Fried Chicken franchises. I'm assuming that, only because the city directories listed it as KFC #1, though such numbering isn't always reliable. It doesn't really matter. Nowadays, the old KFC building is home to a car dealership.

Perhaps even a "world famous" car dealership? Well, why not?

ADVERTISEMENT COURTESY MEMPHIS HOTEL & MOTEL GUIDE

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

Want a Bird’s-Eye View of Memphis 50 Years Ago? The Historic Aerials Website Gives You That — and More

The Historic Aerials website is a treasure trove of images for historians and anyone who wants a glimpse into the past — without using a time machine.
2015.07.17 11:06 AM

Rare Photo: Gladys Presley's Original Gravesite at Forest Hill Cemetery — Mother of Elvis Presley

2012.11.18 08:47 PM

When Trent Wood Met George Bruno

It’s handy when two people I’ve written about come together in one photo: in this case, TV personality Trent Wood and Bruno’s By-Ryt owner George Bruno.
2015.07.21 12:18 PM
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Stories

When Trent Wood Met George Bruno

It’s handy when two people I’ve written about come together in one photo: in this case, TV personality Trent Wood and Bruno’s By-Ryt owner George Bruno.
2015.07.21 12:18 PM

Want a Bird’s-Eye View of Memphis 50 Years Ago? The Historic Aerials Website Gives You That — and More

The Historic Aerials website is a treasure trove of images for historians and anyone who wants a glimpse into the past — without using a time machine.
2015.07.17 11:06 AM

Is This the Original Sign from the Capitol Theatre? (Today Home of Stax Records)

A photo mystery: Was this metal dome ever part of the sign for the old Capitol Theatre, which was converted into Stax Records?
2015.07.13 11:54 AM

Add your comment:
Edit Module

Buy the Ask Vance Books

Edit ModuleShow Tags


Famed Memphis trivia expert Vance Lauderdale answers reader questions weekly here on his blog!

About This Blog

Ask Vance is the blog of Vance Lauderdale, the award-winning columnist of Memphis magazine and Inside Memphis Business. Vance is the author of three books: Ask Vance: The Best Questions and Answers from Memphis Magazine's History and Trivia Expert (2003), as well as Ask Vance: More Questions and Answers from Memphis Magazine's History Expert (2011) and Vance Lauderdale's Lost Memphis (2013). He is also the recipient of quite a few nice awards, the creator of several eye-catching wall calendars, and the only person we know with a vintage shock-treatment machine in his den. 

You can find him from time to time in the pages of the Memphis Flyer and MBQ, on WKNO television, and on Facebook. When he is not exploring the highways and byways of Memphis, he spends his time sleeping, napping, and dozing.

Got a question for Vance?  Email him here.

Find Vance's old blog posts (pre-April 2011) and comments here.

Be Vance's friend on Facebook:  facebook.com/vancelauderdale

Recent Posts

Archives

Feed

Atom Feed Subscribe to the Ask Vance Feed »

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags