The Colonel Sanders You Didn't Know

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The Colonel Sanders You Didn't Know

Post by Darrell » Mon Mar 21, 2016 10:45 pm

Funny and informative article about Col. Harland Sanders:
The seventh of May 1931 was a hot, dusty day in the mountain town of Corbin, Kentucky. Alongside a dirt road, a service station manager named Matt Stewart stood on a ladder painting a cement railroad wall. His application of a fresh coat of paint was gradually obscuring the sign that had been painted there previously. Stewart paused when he heard an automobile approaching at high speed—or what counted for high speed in 1931.

It was coming from the north—from the swath of backcountry known among locals as “Hell’s Half-Acre.” The area was so named for its primary exports: bootleg booze, bullets, and bodies. The neighborhood was also commonly referred to as “the asshole of creation.”

Stewart probably squinted through the dust at the approaching car, and he probably wiped sweat from his brow with the back of a paint-flecked wrist. He probably knew that the driver would be armed, angry, and about to skid to a stop nearby. Stewart set down his paint brush and picked up his pistol. The car skidded to a stop nearby. But it was not an armed man that emerged—it was three armed men. “Well, you son of a bitch!” the driver shouted at the painter, “I see you done it again.” The driver of the car had been using this particular railroad wall to advertise his service station in town, and this was not the first time that the painter—the manager of a competing station—had installed an ad blocker.

Stewart leapt from his ladder, firing his pistol wildly as he dove for cover behind the railroad wall. One of the driver’s two companions collapsed to the ground. The driver picked up his fallen comrade’s pistol and returned fire. Amid a hail of bullets from his pair of adversaries, the painter finally shouted, “Don’t shoot, Sanders! You’ve killed me!” The dusty roadside shootout fell silent, and indeed the former painter was bleeding from his shoulder and hip. But he would live, unlike the Shell Oil executive lying nearby with a bullet wound to the chest.

This encounter might have been as commonplace as any other gunfight around Hell’s Half-Acre were it not for the identity of the driver. The “Sanders” who put two bullets in Matt Stewart was none other than Harland Sanders, the man who would go on to become the world-famous Colonel Sanders. He was dark-haired and clean-shaven at the time, but his future likeness would one day appear on Kentucky Fried Chicken billboards, buildings, and buckets worldwide. In contrast to most other famous food icons, Colonel Sanders was once a living, breathing person, and his life story is considerably more tumultuous than the white-washed corporate biography suggests.

Found via Insty. And sad to say, per mention in the article, his chicken ain't nearly what it used to be.
Eppur si muove--Galileo

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Re: The Colonel Sanders You Didn't Know

Post by blackeagle603 » Tue Mar 22, 2016 2:09 am

it was high living on a day when Dad would treat us to a bucket of the Colonel's best. I still the coleslaw is without peer.
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Re: The Colonel Sanders You Didn't Know

Post by PawPaw » Tue Mar 22, 2016 5:49 pm

I was stationed at Fort Knox from '76-79 and would regularly see Sanders driving his Cadillac. It was hard to miss. A Caddy convertible, painted in the trademark red/white stripes of every KFC franchise. By that time, he had sold the corporate KFC to some big conglomerate, but they paid him a yearly salary to be an ambassador of good will.

He was living large in the late '70s, and passed away in 1980.
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Re: The Colonel Sanders You Didn't Know

Post by 308Mike » Wed Mar 23, 2016 3:58 pm

blackeagle603 wrote:it was high living on a day when Dad would treat us to a bucket of the Colonel's best. I still the coleslaw is without peer.
I love their 'slaw!!! I get a large side of it instead of a small side of mashed potatoes and gravy and 'slaw!! Yummmmmmmmmmmmmmmm!!!!!

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Re: The Colonel Sanders You Didn't Know

Post by Frankingun » Thu Mar 24, 2016 11:24 pm

My dad remembers Sanders hawking his chicken breading mix in the 50's. Sanders sold it to the restaurant where my dad worked part time in Gary, but the name escapes me.
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