Julia Chaney

Julia Chaney met her husband Sheldon “Red” Chaney as she was on her way to the New York World’s Fair, and they were married during World War II.  After Red got out of the service, his father suggested that the whole family take a trip out West since his son was agitated without the military structure he was used to.  On the way home, they fell in love with Springfield and purchased cabins, a station and a restaurant which were right on Route 66.  Red had big ambitions and to match them built a very tall sign “Red’s Giant Hamburger”.  When he went to hang the sign, however, it was too tall and so he simply cut off the “er” becoming famous for his originality and humor.  “Red’s Giant Hamburg” became an icon of the mother road, as did the drive up window, which he pioneered and claimed was the first drive up window ever!  Meanwhile, Julia was busy in the kitchen.  She claimed she could cut 35 pounds of potatoes for Red’s famous french fries by hand in 30 minutes!  Julia and Red worked side by side for thirty-seven years, until they retired.  Julia shared some of the secrets to their business success in an interview conducted by Tommy Pike of the Missouri Route 66 Association (see below). These tips include always using a high quality of meat and maintaining consistent portions. These factors certainly contributed to Red and Julia’s success, but it was also their charm that kept customers from all over Missouri and beyond coming back!  



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