Site of the Original Stuckey’s, 1937, Eastman

This structure, located on the site of Williamson S. Stuckey, Sr.’s (1909-1977) original roadside stand, has the familiar teal blue roof that was a beacon to tourists throughout America from the 1940s until the 1970s. I’m  not sure as to the date of this structure, but it’s probably from the 1940s or 1950s. The Stuckey’s Candy Factory, built in 1948, is located on the property, as well.

In 1937, Mr. Stuckey had a bumper crop of pecans and opened a roadside stand to sell them to the many tourists who passed through town on busy US 23. His wife, Ethel Mullis Stuckey (1909-1991), concocted a rolled pecan confection which quickly became Stuckey’s most iconic treat, the Pecan Log Roll (some love them, some not so much, but their impact on the business can’t be understated). While pecans and pecan-based treats were always the focus, Mr. Stuckey realized that travelers wanted more, and soon added other confections, a restaurant, souvenirs, and gasoline service.

By the late 1960s, there were over 350 Stuckey’s franchises throughout the United States, and their teal blue roofs were as iconic then as McDonald’s golden arches are today. The family sold the business to Pet Milk in 1967, but the focus became more corporate and less personal and changing travel patterns saw the rise of other roadside businesses that were quite competitive. From 1967-1977, Williamson (Billy) Stuckey, Jr., served five terms in the U. S. Congress. In 1985, determined to see his family name return to national prominence, Mr. Stuckey and a group of investors bought back the family business from Pet Milk. Though the familiar Stuckey’s locations of yesterday are no longer in operation, the brand remains strong and store-within-store locations are once again found throughout the eastern United States. In 2019, Stephanie Stuckey took over as CEO with plans of expanding even more, insuring the Stuckey’s name will be known well into the 21st century.

 

6 Comments

Filed under --DODGE COUNTY GA--, Eastman GA

6 responses to “Site of the Original Stuckey’s, 1937, Eastman

  1. Jerry Levy

    Great memories. I stopped for breakfast at a Stucky’s just south of the GA/FL border in the mid 1980s near Folkston on US 23 & 301. While there they had set up a display and free samples of their candy. I got into a discussion with an elderly couple from Pittsburgh who were going to Florida. Funny how one remembers little things.

  2. Ron Park err r

    Rode the Greyhound bus from Waycross to Macon in 1967. Driver stopped there for a rest break and that was the only time I went inside. I travelled by there many times over the years. Certainly is a historic place.

  3. Leland McGough

    You brought back so memories with this one. I have been to Eastman several times with my uncle, Robert Harman, when he worked for GM AC.
    There was a Stuckey’s .just north of Unadilla on US41 where he or my aunt, Doris Harman,would treat me to ice cream. It was right next to a short cut road that we would take to go visit my grandmother in Hawkinsville. .It’s not there any more and has been gone for a long time. When I was in the Air Force in Denver Colorado and would drive to Miami on leave, my wife and I would stop at this Stuckey’s somewhere in north Florida for breakfast. I can’t remember where. When my family would drive me to Georgia to spend he summers with by relatives, I remember the many Stuckey’s we passed by.

    Thanks

    Victor McGough

  4. My favorite was the Dark Chocolate/Coconut Patty. And they always had the Best souvenirs, toys and trinkets that even kids could afford. Great memories here as a lucky kid who’s parents threw the kids in the back of the station wagon and got down to FL. in the 50’s

  5. John Harrison

    Stuckey’s, 7 miles.

  6. Such good memories! As a child in the ’50s, I enjoyed epic vacations on the road with my parents every summer. My Dad was stationed in Illinois and then later in Alabama and in Georgia where he retired. My Dad never took a sick day, saved all of those days plus a two week vacation and off we went. Stuckey’s was prominant during these trips. I think we stopped at every one we encountered. When he retired in Georgia, it was not very far to a Stucky’s and we did not have to wait for a vacation to enjoy pecans. Thank’s for the wonderful memories this image has brought!

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