The first Sandy's came to Memphis, Tennessee in the early 1960's on Summer Avenue and quickly became a huge success. Larry Agee not only worked at this location but also had the honor to occasionally work at the newer Sandy's location on Highland Street as well!
Larry has provided this photo from his college yearbook of the Highland Street location as well as an incredible story involving himself, Sandy's and the godfather of soul Mr. James Brown!
Notice in the photo that the sign for Sandy's at the edge of the parking lot, near the street, appears to be a downsized version of the original Sandy's marquee sign. The head of the Scottish dancing girl is cut off in the photo but you can still distinctly see her image which hundreds of hungry customers saw on a daily basis as they came to Sandy's for a delicious 15Ę hamburger and a triple thick shake.
Also note the giant Sandy's sign board on top of the building as well as the trademark wooden beams which are holding up the classic 1960's ceiling fins. One can also make out the classic HAMBURGERS-SHAKES above the walk-up section. This picture was taken during the Sandy's explosion which was taking part across the midwest as well as other areas of the country!
Jan. 8, 2005
I worked for Sandy's while I was in Messick High School and as a freshman at Memphis State University. I worked at the one on Highland Street. There was another on Summer Ave. that I did fill in at a few times when they were having school functions on the other side of town! I'll scan a picture out of my yearbook that has my car in the parking lot. They did not turn into Hardee's in Memphis. They became Arthur Treacher's Fish and Chips. I worked at the same location for Arthur after I got married. It was 1971.
Iím 54 years old now and was only 15 when I started at Sandyís. I donít know if my memory is correct about both Sandyís becoming Arthur Treacherís Fish & Chips stores. I know the one on Highland did.
My brush with celebrity happened one dismal Saturday afternoon when a long white limousine came in full of people. A large man got out and placed a big order for HiLos, fish sandwiches, cokes, orange drinks, milk shakes and more. He carried the food to the car, came back and paid and picked up the drinks. We asked who was out there and he said it was James Brown who was performing in the Mid-South Coliseum that night. We asked if we could get autographs and he carried some Sandyís napkins out to the limo. When he came back with our prizes he ordered 2 more HiLos because James Brown had eaten his! Several of the Sandyís employees went out and shook hands with James Brown and several pretty ladies in his car. I gave my autographed napkin away to a girl friend.
Iím sorry I donít have a better picture. This one came from the Memphis State University yearbook, DESOTO, from 1969. This is a picture from the homecoming parade which went right in front of the store that year. You can tell the year book staff was really photographing the pretty girls, After that year they shortened the parade. I was a freshman tuba player in the band.
In the background you can see the Sandyís sign. Our girl did not spin. I worked at the store when we closed in the area in front of the windows so customers could get out of the weather while we served them. I believe the franchise was owned by the Robinson (Robertson?) family from Georgia. They also owned a store near Georgia Tech. That is where James Brown was supposed to have developed his taste for Sandyís burgers.
One of our managers while I worked there was Torch Robinson. His brother was a drag racer and would park his racing machine out front when he was in Memphis for the races. You had to go by McDonaldís to get to Sandyís from the MSU campus. The last time I was in that part of Memphis the building was an abandoned Greek restaurant. Iím sorry to say the McDonaldís is still there.
If you live near Granbury, TX, Larry is an accomplished musician. If you need help with a musical event or just want someone to help you prepare for a special event, Larry can help! He taught public school band for 8 years and plays the tuba, guitar and bass guitar. Visit his website for more details! www.froma2g.com
Floor sweeper to lead man 1966 - 1969
Frequent contributor to this website Robby Delius has provided incredible advertisements from Memphis Sandy's. The two Memphis locations were not part of the final 1973 corporate Sandy's locations list. They may have been in existence and missed along with other known locations such as all Indiana locations. Regardless, the addresses were missing up until now. Thanks to Robby's outstanding work, we now know that 3592 Summer and 775 S. Highland were the exact locations. Furthermore, a check of the 1968 Sandy's locations list shows that Summer opened first and was one of the early Sandy's opening as Sandy's #40 or close to it. Highland opened some twenty stores later.
Davenport, Iowa, Harrison Sandy's opened some five or so locations before Summer in June of 1962 so with Robby's newly discovered Memphis advertisements appearing as early as October 18th, 1962, he has shown that Summer opened shortly before these clippings appeared in the newspaper! The timeline for Summer's grand opening is now narrowed down to a short period of time.
Summer and Highland both appear on every ad presented here so it appears that both most likely opened in 1962. Highland located just south of the University of Memphis campus on the Highland strip and is an Indian cuisine restaurant as of March 2006, carrying on the tradition as an eatery now for some forty-five years later!
Robby's first advertisement is from April 1964. The Milwaukee Braves are still in existence (before moving to Atlanta) so some lucky fan is going to win a trip to see Hank Aaron in his prime! The reason that the St. Louis Cardinals are being promoted here is that Memphis is the longtime home of the St. Louis Cardinal's triple A affiliate the Memphis Redbirds.
November 16th, 1962 is the date for the next advertisement. Sandy's was famous for their incredible cherry and apple pies. Here something called cherry & apple flips are presented. Perhaps this is a Memphis way of calling a pie?
This next ad is from October 18th, 1962. It is interesting to note that Pepsi is being served here in the south as well as Teem, Pepsi's answer to Mountain Dew which was later purchased by Pepsi!
Finally, Robby provides this advertisement from October 29th, 1962. Even early in the history of Sandy's, a fun atmosphere was being promoted for families. Children are invited to stop by Sandy's for a Halloween treat. This later evolved into Sandy's famous promotion of giving away a trick or treat bag free to every child!
Big Special thanks again to Robby Delius whose ongoing archival work yet again provides a great addition to the history of Sandy's as well as other websites on the internet!
UPDATE 07/19/06!!! Robby Delius has provided another piece to the history puzzle of Sandy's Memphis! Robby shows in this ad from 1972 that not only did one Sandy's location become Arthur Treacher's fish and chips but both locations did as shown on the addresses in this ad! Memphis Sandy's does not appear on the final Sandy's list from 1973 and here Robby proves what Sandy's fan Larry Agee said - that they both flipped to Arthur's well before the 1973 Hardees buy out. Thank you Robby for this important Sandy's information!
Sandy's fan Matt Dillon remembers Sandy's Memphis locations and has possibly found two missing Sandy's locations!
Surfing the web I came across the Sandy's website by accident. I routinely visited the Highland and Summer Avenue stores during my youth, but there were two other Memphis locations. One was not far from the other two in East Memphis at Getwell Road near Rhodes Avenue and Barron Avenue.
The site was in a strip shopping center that housed about 12 businesses including a Kroger and a 5 and dime called TG&Y. The restaurant was at the south end of the parking lot and was in the classic Sandy's style. I remember the sign and building design well. My home was only two blocks away in a subdivision called Sherwood Forrest and all of us kids would ride our bikes to Sandy's to buy their delicious fries.
I moved to Kentucky in late 1963 and returned to Memphis in 1967 to enroll at Memphis State University. The restaurant was still open, but closed shortly thereafter. The building was torn down to make way for a muffler shop. I do not know the exact address on Getwell, but could find out with a little research.
The other location was on Lamar Avenue near the intersection of Pendelton Avenue. It was a stand alone location with its own parking lot. The site was not too far from the airport and my father would stop there to feed us after we had gone out to watch planes take off. My dad got so used to us going that whenever we went to the airport we stopped at Sandy's for food. This one closed about the same time as the one on Getwell and the building was there for a number of years. I also can find out the address of this unit if needed and could see if any of the building still remains. It is now in a bad part of town and I have not ventured by there in years.
I hope this helps you out! Sandy's was much better than the Golden Arches! It was a shame they were bought out.
08/14/2006 ... Robby Delius has found what appears to be the earliest advertisement for Arthur Treachers Memphis locations. The importance of this ad is it points to the time period as to when Memphis Sandy's flipped to Arthurs! The date of this ad is July 3rd, 1970 which leads one to believe that sometime in early 1970 the owner of both Sandy's either sold out or more likely flipped his franchise from Sandy's to Arthurs.
Robby puts the final end to the legacy of Memphis Sandy's. On 05/08/70, Arthur Treachers Original Fish & Chips was now open in what was both Sandy's locations! Wouldn't it be incredible to see a picture of the Arthur Treachers signage attached to the Sandy's building! (More pictures of Memphis Sandy's even better still!) If you have access to the Memphis Yearbooks & can look into the early 1970's business sponsor section & if perhaps there is a picture of the Arthur Trachers/Sandy's building, please email me!
Rob was also looking through the Memphis papers and found an ad for Carrols Hamburgers 1259 Getwell at Barron in the Cross Rhodes Shopping Center from 08/23/62. Perhaps this was confused with a Sandy's or there could have been both Sandy's and Carrols near the same corner!
If you have any memorabilia, pictures or stories of Sandy's in Memphis, Tennessee or elsewhere, please email me!