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Archive for the ‘Hartsville’ tag

Cindy's Ole Time Hamburgers, 109 East Bobo Newsom Highway (Hartsville): 2009   19 comments

Posted at 12:13 am in closing


They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so at the time, Dave Thomas must have been very flattered.

Shortly after Wendy's came to town, a number of copycat restaurants popped up. They all had young girl mascots after which they were named, had square hamburgers and interiors set up with what at that time was Wendy's signature: One serving line. Unlike Burger King which was famous for letting McDonald's spend a lot of money finding ideal locations and then setting up across the street, these copy-cats tended to set up in smaller towns where there was, at the time, no Wendy's, or at least that's how I remember it. I'm pretty sure I recall chains called Judy's and Penny's (which I think had a restaurant in Georgetown which became El Cerro Grande before they razed it and built their own building). And then there was Cindy's Ole Time Hamburgers, which honestly I don't recall at all. Locating in Hartsville at the time would definitely be the setting up in a smaller market strategy though.

I haven't been able to find out much about Cindy's except that it definitely was a a Wendy's copy-cat and that its trademark was filed in 1976 (about the right time) and is expired. However, the chain still seems to exist in the Phillipines.

This particular location is at the intersection of US-15 & SC-151, and would have been basically in the boonies back in the day. It's still not what you would call a dense area. I may have the street address a little bit wrong, but it's close enough for Google Streetview to show the restaurant.

As you can see from the pictures, nobody else has ever set up shop here. In fact, I believe the place is now what you call a micro-clime which is uniquely suited for various plant life, though not so much for beef.

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Written by ted on November 29th, 2018

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Rancho Grande, 1809 South 5th Street Hartsville: May 2017   no comments

Posted at 2:36 am in closing















I never actually ate at Rancho Grande, but I was aware of it as we would drive by on the way to visit relatives, and they mentioned eating there from time to time. I'm pretty sure the building started life as a national brand steakhouse, possibly a Western Sizzling.

Hartsville has urbanized to a surprising extent this millennium, but when this was built, the area was still quite rural and I'm sure the out-of-town location was chosen because it is at the intersection of US-15 Bypass and US-15 Business, something quite important before the Interstates.

The restaurant's Facebook page indicates that it closed around 17 May 2017, though I am unable to explain the wreath on the door which would otherwise indicate a post-Holiday-Season closing. The page also directs patrons to Neuva Villa which is apparently owned by the same family.

Written by ted on October 20th, 2018

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Beaver Dam Trading Post, 2820 West Old Camden Road (Hartsville SC): mid 2000s   1 comment

Posted at 1:31 am in Uncategorized

I made a bit of a road-trip on Labor Day, and noticed this place between Camden and Hartsville. Beaver Dam Trading Post sat just up the hill from an old mill pond. While the mill was never in operation (that I can recall) while I was growing up, it sat there idle for years and years as the pond water rushed over the spillway. In general my parents didn't want us going near it for fear that something would collapse, but I recall getting up to the windows at least once, and seeing all the works and millstone still inside the place. Of course, despite driving past the mill at least a dozen times every year, and despite fancying myself as a shutterbug with my 35mm constantly at the ready on these family trips, I never thought to take a single picture of it until after it was gone.

Also at the side of the lake by the mill was an unlabelled upside-down "L" shaped pipe which was the outlet for an artesian well. This flowed 24/7/365, and we would always make our parents stop there so we could drink from this marvel. Once our dog got into the spirit as well, and jumped out the car window to join us at the pipe, managing to break her leg.

The small spurt of development that brought the Trading Post seemed to have put paid to the old mill and well. This is complete speculation but I suspect that people locating around the lake were distrustful of the old spillway, and that increased septic usage made a potable well somewhat iffy. At any rate, the mill went first, and the well a few years later.

After the route from I-20 through Bishopville to Hartsville developed, we travelled this stretch of road much less often, and in my case usually at night. To me it seemed that Beaver Dam Trading Post was doing neither better nor worse than you would expect for a convienience store in what was still a pretty sparse and rural area. It wasn't packed, but there were always a few cars there. This Administrative Court decision shows that they were apparently owned by a former Lee County Magistrate and got a permit to sell beer & wine to go in 1999. This set of game-day driving directions shows that they were closed by 2009. Judging from the growth of the tree around the gas island, I would say maybe 2007 or 2008, but given that the interior is still intact, probably not much earlier than that.

UPDATE 21 Sep 2010: I should probably note that although most google searches list this spot as "Hartsville", it is actually well outside the town limits and is much closer to the unincorporated little community of Kellytown.

Written by ted on September 16th, 2010

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