By Stephen Fried
Featured within the PBS documentary The Harvey ladies: chance Bound
The mythical lifestyles and entrepreneurial imaginative and prescient of Fred Harvey contributed to shaping American tradition and historical past for 3 generations—from the Eighties all through global warfare II—and nonetheless effect our lives at the present time in extraordinary and engaging methods. Now award-winning journalist Stephen Fried re-creates the lifetime of this not likely American hero, the founder of the nation’s carrier undefined, whose outstanding kin company civilized the West and brought the United States to Americans.
Appetite for America is the significant real-life tale of Fred Harvey—told intensive for the 1st time ever—as good because the tale of this country’s enlargement into the Wild West of Bat Masterson and Billy the child, of the nice days of the railroad, of a time while a deal may perhaps nonetheless be made with a handshake and the us was once nonetheless uniting. As a tender immigrant, Fred Harvey labored his means up from dishwasher to loved ones identify: He was once Ray Kroc prior to McDonald’s, J. Willard Marriott earlier than Marriott resorts, Howard Schultz prior to Starbucks. His consuming homes and motels alongside the Atchison, Topeka, and Santa Fe railroad (including historical resorts nonetheless in use on the Grand Canyon) have been patronized by means of princes, presidents, and numerous usual tourists trying to find the easiest cup of espresso within the nation. Harvey’s employees of conscientiously screened unmarried younger women—the celebrated Harvey Girls—were the country’s first woman crew and have become real Americana, even inspiring an MGM musical starring Judy Garland.
With the verve and keenness of Fred Harvey himself, Stephen Fried tells the tale of ways this visionary outfitted his company from a unmarried lunch counter right into a relatives empire whose advertising and concepts we nonetheless stumble upon in myriad methods. Inspiring, instructive, and highly enjoyable, Appetite for America is ancient biography that's as richly lucrative as a slice of unpolluted apple pie—and each piece as satisfying.
*With photograph inserts that includes over seventy five photographs, and an appendix with over fifty Fred Harvey recipes, so much of them never-before-published.
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Additional resources for Appetite for America: How Visionary Businessman Fred Harvey Built a Railroad Hospitality Empire that Civilized the Wild West
These figures are based on consumer price index comparisons using the handy “MeasuringWorth calculator” developed by economists from the University of Illinois at Chicago and Miami University. CHAPTER 2 THE LAST TRAIN STOP IN AMERICA BEFORE FRED LOST HIS RESTAURANT, ONE OF HIS FAVORITE regular customers was Captain Rufus Ford, a veteran boatman who lived upriver in Quincy, Illinois, but often stopped in during his regular runs between St. Louis and St. Paul. Ford had become successful in the 1850s skippering “packet boats”—regularly scheduled steamships carrying people, goods, and mail—on the upper Mississippi.
But, like many Londoners who came to New York that year, he was also seeking opportunity. S. soil, the Exhibition of the Industry of All Nations. It was an Americanized version of the first world’s fair anywhere, London’s Crystal Palace Exhibition, which had drawn over six million visitors to the 990,000-square-foot exhibition hall in Hyde Park in 1851. New York decided to build its own Crystal Palace on 42nd Street between Fifth and Sixth avenues, in what is now Bryant Park, and was expecting a similar rush of tourists.
Fred set out to make an immediate impression in the business community, as the Leavenworth Conservative hailed his arrival: “The men of Leavenworth will be glad to hear of this most excellent appointment. Mr. H is a man of extensive railroad and steamboat experience … He is well and widely known as a thorough, competent and efficient business man, and a most agreeable gentleman. ” The Harveys arrived in town just as the Civil War appeared to be finally wearing down. The slaves had been freed, Lincoln had been reelected, tentative peace talks had begun.
Appetite for America: How Visionary Businessman Fred Harvey Built a Railroad Hospitality Empire that Civilized the Wild West by Stephen Fried