Beautifully engraved certificate from the Jerry O'Mahony Inc.
in 1953. This historic document was printed by the Columbian Banknote Company and has an ornate border around it with a vignette of an allegorical woman leaning on a seditary lion. This item has the printed signatures of the company’s president and secretary and is
over 66 years old.
JERRY O'MAHONEY, 1890-1969: Creator of the Jersey Diner. Sold pork and beans and corned beef hash from horse-drawn lunch wagons in Bayonne, then later bought stationary cars, which he renamed diners. By 1928, O'Mahoney and his brother, Dan, were among the top three producers of the lunch cars. At the start of the 20th century, diners began to be prefabricated--mostly in New England and mostly in New Jersey--and delivered ready to start dishin' it out.
During the days of the flapper, diner manufacturers such as the Jerry O'Mahoney Company, Kullman, and Silk City deliberately began mimicking the look of railroad dining cars to add a little "class" to their products. Oh, you kid! nothing was more elegant than traveling by train in those days.
Famous diners built by Jerry O'Mahony Inc include:
The Emerald Diner doesn't date back quite as far as 23-skidoo, but this sparkling, green-accented 1939 O'Mahoney in Hubbard, Ohio, stands as an excellent example of what diners once stood for and what good restoration work can do. For 40 years, the Emerald served Norwich, Connecticut as "Burt's Diner." After Burt's closed, the building spent ten years in a purgatory familiar to many classic diners--the abandoned cornfield. Rescue came in 1994 when Hubbard, Ohio accountant James P. Marsh bought the diner, moved it to its present location, and began scrubbing this beauty up to its original lustre.
The first cup of hot coffee was pushed across the counter at the Emerald in April of 1995. For it's fine work, Marsh Development was granted a Trumbull County Historical Preservation Award.
The Emerald makes you feel at home as soon as you come through the doors. It's awfully cozy inside (seating only 43), but that won't bother you. It's hard not to notice how a lucky stool at the counter puts you right in front of the pie case and within reach of that stack of heavy, curled ice cream cups. The checkered tile floors, scalloped stainless steel back wall, and mahogany ceilings are polished and twinklingly clean.
Emerald Diner built by Jerry O'Mahony Inc
The Equinox Diner whose Equinox Cabins have become the Aspen Motel, spent $20,000 for his sixteen-stool, five-booth diner which proved to be a popular spot for local youth. Later it was operated by the Bischoff family.
The Tastee Diner built in 1946 on the northwest corner of Wayne and Georgia Avenues to make way for the new Discovery Communications office building. It's new location is the southeast corner of Cameron Street and Ramsey Avenue, one block west of Georgia Avenue and two blocks north of Colesville Road.
The YAKITTY-YAK DINER is a stainless steel diner is reportedly the last diner built by the O'Mahoney Company. Originally the GATEWAY DINER, it was located along RTE 22 in Wilkins Twp. from 1956 until 1978. The diner was later used for other purposes until being brought to North Apollo in October of 1992 and restored. The YAKKITTY-YAK DINER opened for business November 30th, 1994, and is owned and operated by Bobbie Lou Maldonado and Deb Pugsley. ~~~
Royal Diner, formerly Kelly's Comer Restaurant, originally Hill's Diner, 150 Rt. 31 S., Washington, NJ, was built by Jerry O'Mahoney, Inc., "In Our Line We Lead the World," Elizabeth, NJ ca. late 1940's.
The Shawmut Diner arrived in historic New Bedford Massachusetts via flat bed truck from the Jerry O' Mahoney Company of New Jersey in 1953. For nearly four decades,the name Shawmut Diner has been synonymous with good food and quick service, reasonable prices, and fond memories. In December of 1981, Phil and Celeste Paleologos revitalized a somewhat neglected diner and regained local status as one of the "classics" that make New Bedford, Massachusetts so special.