During the twentieth century, fast-food restaurants, or quick service restaurants (QSR), became one of the fastest-growing American industries. The major chains and franchises purchased prime real estate, thus transforming the American landscape. Along with the rise of automobiles, QSRs changed consumer behavior and spending. Major QSRs invested billions of advertising dollars to create brand-name recognition, shaping popular culture as well.
America’s first major fast-food chain was the
During the 1920’s, the American lifestyle began to change, as
Two hamburger restaurants inaugurated the modern fast-food industry. In 1948, brothers Maurice and Richard McDonald opened their
Like Ray Kroc, James
In the 1970’s, many Jack in the Box fast food restaurants, like this one in Los Angeles, featured eye-catching signs.
In 1956, Carl N.
Founded by Fred
In 1997, PepsiCo’s fast-food giants KFC, Taco Bell, and Pizza Hut were made subsidiaries of Tricon Global Restaurants, which became
In 1962, Glen
Other specialty chains developed, including
Darden, Bob. Secret Recipe: Why KFC Is Still Cookin’ After Fifty Years. Irving, Tex.: Tapestry Press, 2002. Complete history of KFC, including business secrets and narratives about founder Colonel Harlan Sanders. Illustrated. Index. Jakle, John A., and Keith A. Sculle. Fast Food: Roadside Restaurants in the Automobile Age. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1999. With over one hundred photos, this is a well-researched study of the culture of roadside eateries, fast-food chains, and the automobile. Bibliography. Love, John F. McDonald’s: Behind the Arches. Rev. ed. New York: Bantam Books, 1995. Comprehensive chronicle of the rise of McDonald’s, including behind-the-scenes stories. Illustrated. Index. McLamore, James. The Burger King: Jim McLamore and the Building of an Empire. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1997. Detailed autobiography of a cofounder of Burger King and detailed history of the company from its beginning in 1954. Illustrated. Index. Schlosser, Eric. Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2001. Well-researched New York Times bestseller that reveals the cultural, social, economic, and health consequences of the fast-food trend. Notes and index. Spurlock, Morgan. Don’t Eat This Book: Fast Food and the Supersizing of America. New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons, 2005. Humorous account of how the author lived on fast food alone for thirty days and the effect on his health. The subsequent documentary film broke box-office records. Appendixes and notes. Tennyson, Jeffrey. Hamburger Heaven: The Illustrated History of the Hamburger. New York: Hyperion, 1993. Includes the history of hamburger fast-food chains such as Burger King, McDonald’s, and Wendy’s. Beautifully illustrated.