Jerry O'Mahony Diner Company

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The Summit Diner in Summit, New Jersey, is a prototypical "rail car" style diner. Built by the O'Mahony Company in 1938, and is the oldest operating diner in the state.[1]
Collin's Diner, North Canaan, Connecticut, USA.

The Jerry O'Mahony Diner Company of Elizabeth, New Jersey, whose motto was "In our line, We lead the world", was said to have produced 2,000 diners from 1917 to 1941, and became the largest manufacturer of its period.[2] The roadside diners referred to are long, narrow, primarily metal buildings, prefabricated in a factory, and trucked to the location. They resemble and are often confused with actual railroad rolling stock, but these buildings were never railroad cars.


A Bayonne, New Jersey, man by the name of Jerry O'Mahony (1890-1969) is credited by some to have made the first "diner".[3] The Jerry O'Mahony Diner Company of Elizabeth, New Jersey, produced 2,000 diners from 1917 to 1952. Only approximately twenty[4] O'Mahony diners are still in existence throughout the United States and in certain parts of the world. As an example, the Murphy's Diner from Cambridge, Massachusetts, was sold across the Atlantic Ocean and is currently trading as the 50s American Diner in Swadlincote, South Derbyshire in the United Kingdom. The Shawmut Diner of New Bedford, Massachusetts was donated by its owners to the Bristol County House of Corrections in Dartmouth, Massachusetts and will serve as a training facility for inmates.[5] In the U.S., the northernmost is Martha's Diner in Coventry, Vermont. The Summit Diner, a 1938 model, is located in Summit, NJ. The oldest southern diner (non–stainless steel style) is believed to be the Hillsville Diner in Carroll County, Virginia. The Excellent Diner, a 1947 model, was located in Westfield, NJ. closed in 1995, shipped to Germany and now at Disneyland Paris as Café des Cascadeurs, (Café of the Stuntmen). The Triangle Diner,[6] a 1948 stainless steel O'Mahony original model, is located in the old town of Winchester, Virginia and is currently being historically restored to how it appeared in 1948. The Triangle Diner is the oldest stainless steel style O'Mahony diner in the State of Virginia. In 2007 Tommy's Deluxe Diner was moved from Middletown, Rhode Island to Oakley, Utah where it opened as the Road Island Diner. One of the original ones displayed at the 1939 New York World's Fair, made by Paramount Diners, is still in operation as the White Mana in Jersey City.[7][8][9] Also in Jersey City is the Miss America, a 1942 classic stainless steel model, located next to the New Jersey City University campus.[10]

Pre-war streamline moderne style diners[edit]

There are at least 26 pre-war Streamline Moderne style O'Mahony diners (diners built between 1932-1941) still in existence.[11] These include the smaller 50' x 10' Mickey's Diner serial # 1067 in Saint Paul, Minnesota, which is one of several listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the 40' x 16' Collin's Diner serial # 1103 in North Canaan, Connecticut, and the 1938 Summit Diner in Summit, N.J. The Road Island Diner (O'Mahony Dining Car #1107) was added to the National Register of Historic Places by the National Park Service on August 21, 2009.[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^ Offitzer, Karen (2002). Diners. New York, NY: New Line Books. p. 46. ISBN 1-57717-052-0. 
  3. ^ p.16 Westergaard, Barbara A Guide to New Jersey Rutgers University Press
  4. ^ Ontdek de WinstMethode | Eenvoudig online geld verdienen
  5. ^ [1]
  6. ^ Triangle Diner - Official Page (Winchester, VA). Facebook
  7. ^ White Mana Diner
  8. ^ "Diners - Various, 1920s & 1930s". Art and Archtitecture of New Jersey. Stockton University. Retrieved 2011-05-24. 
  9. ^ Patrick Kevin (July 21, 2010). "Endangered New Jersey Diners". Retrieved 2011-05-23. 
  10. ^ Miss America Diner
  11. ^
  12. ^ Garbin, Randy. "RoadsideOnline Diner Finder". Coffee Cup Media. Retrieved 28 March 2011.