Frank P. Thomas Jr., Donald J. Thomas, and Robert E. Wildman, owners of the General Equipment Company, entered into the fast-food business by opening a 15 hamburger restaurant called Burger Chef in Indianapolis in 1958. General Equipment was a manufacturer of restaurant machinery and built the equipment installed in each Burger Chef store. The partners started their new Burger Chef division to sell more equipment; they never could have imagined that Burger Chef would eventually grow to become the nations second-largest hamburger chain and beloved by customers in towns and cities across America. Burger Chef continued in business until 1982, cooking its popular flame-broiled hamburgers and introducing its memorable advertising icons, Burger Chef and Jeff.
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1,000th Burger Chef Big Shef brother Donald Burger Chef advertisement Burger Chef chain Burger Chef located Burger Chef operation Burger Chef restaurant Burger Chef sign Burger Chef store Burger Chef street Burger King Butch Schroeder Chef street sign cofounder Cookeville Courtesy of Butch Courtesy of Donald Courtesy of Frank Courtesy of Kyle Courtesy of Paul customers Dave Lester David Edgerton demonstration store Donald Thomas Jr downtowner drivein estate of Raymond fish sandwich Foods former Burger Chef franchise owner French chef french fry front frozen custard machine Fun Meal Georgia hamburger hamburger chain Hazel Park Indiana Indianapolis installed Kentucky Kyle Brown little chef McDonald’s menu board original Paul Browning photograph shows photograph was taken Purdue University Raymond E remodeled Robert Wildman roof arch SaniBroiler SaniServ shot slogan smiling chef logo softserve ice cream store located store owners Texas trade show Treasure Island Triple Treat unidentified location Waycross Winthrop University