Wimpy, originally Wimpy Grills is an international fast food chain that surprisingly, (to me) was founded in Bloomington, Indiana by Edward Gold during 1934. Why the recent surprise to me? Growing up on the east coast of the United States I had never heard of Wimpy. The oldest fast food chain, (which is also not in all 50 United States) that I knew of is White Castle.
Wimpy, (yes named after the Popeye character) once had 25 restaurants in midwestern US cities. By 1977 there were only 7 locations. When Edward Gold passed on the following year, the remaining US locations closed there doors.
That would have been it and I wouldn’t be writing about them today. If it hadn’t been for some foresight. Mr. Edward Gold licensed to J. Lyons and Co. back in 1954 to open Wimpy restaurants in the United Kingdom. McDonalds and Burger King were infants.
In the 1960s Wimpy had expanded to other European countries and eventually other continents. Today Wimpy parent company, Famous Brands Limited has its headquarters in Johannesburg, South Africa.
That’s why 11 years later as adults and kids were making Ghostbusters II memories at Hardee’s, (Ecto–Containment Blog Post, March 25, 2017) ghostheads in the United Kingdom (and hopefully abroad) also made Ghostbusters II memories at Wimpy locations.