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Hackney’s, Captain Starn’s and the Restaurants That Were

These two giant seafood restaurants in the Inlet, along with other classic eateries, dominated the restaurant scene for decades in Atlantic City.

By Lori Hoffman
Add Comment Add Comment | Comments: 76 | Posted Nov. 10, 2010

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An old Hackney's Lobster Girls card

In the early 1960s my brothers and I had a Saturday morning summer ritual. We would hop on our bicycles and ride the six-mile length of the Ventnor and Atlantic City Boardwalks. When we reached Captain Starn’s Seafood Restaurant we would buy the seal chum and feed the seals and sea lions in the pen by the restaurant.

Captain Starn’s and Hackney’s Seafood Restaurant, both located off the Boardwalk in the Inlet section of town, were two of the most famous restaurants on the entire East Coast.

They were part of a glorious era in Atlantic City — the 1940s to the 1960s — when the town was still a bustling tourist mecca in the summertime. The decline of the “Queen of Resorts” and “The World’s Playground” was just around the corner, but before that decline Atlantic City, the whole of Absecon Island and the surrounding region was well known for great restaurants.

Hackney’s, opened by Harry Hackney in 1912, bragged in its advertising that it was, “as famous as the Boardwalk.” This monster-sized facility could seat 3,200 patrons for dinner, and once claimed that it was the largest seafood restaurant in the world. It was famous for its lobster dinners and its lobster tank where you could literally pick up your dinner. Amazingly enough, there were enough customers to keep both Hackney’s and Captain Starn’s hopping despite the fact that they were just down the Boardwalk from each other. Captain Starn’s Restaurant, had seating for 750, and was opened by Clarence Starn in 1940.

As noted in a 2005 article by columnist and author Jim Waltzer in Atlantic City Weekly, “When Capt. Starn’s Restaurant and Boating Center was in its prime, the attraction was indeed more than just cuisine. ... A fleet of sailboats and motorboats provided sightseeing excursions round the island. A seaplane took the courageous on thrill rides, ending its run with a nerve-wracking dive into the ocean. Starn’s may have offered a four-star stuffed flounder and broiled Alaskan crab, but it was the atmosphere that kept the place packed.”

Also in the city were Dock’s Oyster House on Atlantic Avenue and the Knife And Fork Inn, the odd-shaped restaurant with the Flemish design, located on Albany and Pacific avenues. These two elegant, long-time culinary icons have survived to this day. So has Tony’s Baltimore Grill, at Iowa and Atlantic avenues, still a local’s favorite for its pizza and spaghetti.

Other Italian favorites that are still around are Angelo’s Fairmount Tavern (opened in 1935), at 2300 Fairmount Ave., and Angeloni’s II Restaurant at 2400 Arctic Ave. Both are local favorites in the town’s Ducktown neighborhood.

If you were in the mood for a great Jewish deli experience you had two excellent choices, Kornblau’s at Virginia and Pacific avenues in Atlantic City, and Lou’s Restaurant on Ventnor Avenue (at Nashville) in Ventnor. Kornblau’s, operated by Morris and Alex Kornblau, was known for its tasty corned-beef and hot pastrami sandwiches. Lou and Helen Adelman opened Lou’s restaurant in February 1946. It featured classic deli sandwiches, salads and soups.

It was dress-up time and a special occasion when we went to Zaberer’s on the Black Horse Pike in Egg Harbor Township. Home of the “Zaber-ized” cocktail (a mug of root beer in my case), it was opened by Charlie Zaberer in the 1940s and, in its heyday, this huge facility and popular banquet spot could seat 1,200. We would also go for a longer trip on rare occasions to Ed Zaberer’s (Charlie’s brother) in Wildwood. (When you take the escalator up to the House of Blues Music Hall at the Showboat you can see an old-style advertisement for Zaberer’s.)

When visiting Atlantic City nostalgia sites online, it becomes clear that the three Kent’s Restaurants were popular tourist stops for summer visitors. Kent’s Restaurant & Baking Co. was founded in 1903 by Morris Walton at 1208 Atlantic Ave. The second location was on Pacific and Illinois avenues, and the third at Atlantic and Arkansas avenues.

Here is one ode to Kent’s pastries found on the site iloveac.com: “Kent’s Restaurant-Bakery Uptown made delicious twice-iced chocolate cakes. The vanilla layers were covered with two chocolate icings, the first frosting was light chocolate and over this was a shiny dark chocolate icing. The cakes sat in the window on raised glass cake stands fancied with white paper doilies.”

On the Boardwalk at Tennessee Avenue, later moving to South Carolina Avenue, was Childs, part of a chain of restaurants started by Samuel and Williams Childs in 1889. Designed to provide “economical meals for the working class,” the chain is credited as the first to use a tray line self-service cafeteria format. The restaurant in Atlantic City could seat 1,000.

This article barely scratches the surface of the great Atlantic City dining experience back in the old days. If you have memories of favorite eateries, please add them to the comments section below.

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COMMENTS

Comments 1 - 76 of 76
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1. AC InTheSeventies said... on Nov 11, 2010 at 08:25AM

“We didn't have much back then in the early 70s. Our vacation was 5 days at the Dolphin Motel in Margate. And our one big night out was a visit to Abe's Oyster House at Atlantic and Arkansas Aves (no longer there). I remember the long rows or tables and the Oyster Crackers on the tables.

After that meal, if we were lucky and had a couple of dollars left over, we would walk to the Steel Pier and watch the barkers, diving bell and try to catch a look at the diving horse.”

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2. lbsnyder said... on Nov 12, 2010 at 12:28AM

“It is sad that these great establishments were sold and the properties have languished to the detriment of the public. They were treasures. The laws should force these developers to either develop them or sell them in a period of time.”

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3. curtis h. kugel said... on Nov 15, 2010 at 01:57PM

“I would like to embellish your story concerning the many individual owner restaurants in the 1960's in AC. I will start with the Venice Restaurant on Mississippi Ave. across from St. Michael's Church. It was owned by the Dinickelantonio family. Mr Edward Dinick Senior came to work for me at Luigi's Restaurant Co. Inc. located at 2015-17-19-21 Pacific Ave. He was a wonderful employee, and taught me how to operate as a Maitre"D greeting customers. Across the street from Luigi's was "Jimmy's Just a hobby", a small 35 seat operation. If you didn't know Jimmy you did not get in. It was a very private and discreet operation. He also had a larger location on 21st street in Miami Beach, where he remained in the winter season.
The Vienna restaurant located at 1415 boardwalk owned by the Garr Family was also a wonderful restaurant, with great sandwiches. All the boardwalk merchants would hang out there for lunch, and or dinner. Their kitchen would prepare everything on premises.”

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4. curtis h. kugel said... on Nov 16, 2010 at 01:47PM

“A wonderful restaurant and bar operating in the 50's and 60's was TONY BARRATA'S ESCORT BAR AND RESTAURANT LOCATED AT ATLANTIC AND MISSOURI AVE. (on the corner). Great Shrimps Scampi, and a relaxing bar atmosphere. It was a few doors away from the 5oo club”

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5. Anna said... on Dec 26, 2010 at 09:54AM

“Ed Saberer's restaurant hangs long in my memory. My husband and I had our first dinner there, 5 hours, and started what became a 33 year marriage. The food was outstanding, but what impressed us was all the "compliments of Ed Zaberer" dishes. For instance, a 12 inch platter of shrimp to start with, and the several desserts at the end. Just a memorable experience. Wish that restaurant was still there.”

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6. eileen said... on Feb 5, 2011 at 08:06PM

“My family lived around the corner from Capt Starns. We walked there constantly , getting to know the captains who drove the Miss atlantic City andothers. Always climbing the rocks by the boardwalk and walking there length at night. Shopping at Garwood Mills and hitting the beach”

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7. John said... on Mar 29, 2011 at 04:20PM

“Docks Oyster House still remains its reputation as the best seafood restaurant on the East coast!”

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8. Frank Finelli said... on Mar 29, 2011 at 05:14PM

“I'm in the restaurant business today in pa because of growing up going to restaurants like Luigi's, Captain Starns, Hackney's . It was a great time late 50's early 60's”

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9. Evan DOughty said... on May 9, 2011 at 09:30PM

“Capt Starns was my great uncle by marriage. His wife was my grand mothers sister. We sat at his table when we visited and always had the best times be it on the sail boat, one of the motor boats, the helicopter he had or strolling the grounds. Stories abounded of what he had owned and done. I was told at one time he owned a portion of the Steel pier too. I remember the bell, the diving horse, the acades and so many things before gambling came and changed a lot of the town.”

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10. marvin said... on Aug 28, 2011 at 04:47AM

“i grew up in atlantic city fond memories”

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11. Keith Rodgers said... on Oct 31, 2011 at 10:56AM

“As I sit in my office I'm looking at matchbook photos of my family at the table in Starn's. There are 8 of us, my oldest brother Bruce and my youngest sister Sharon were not there. I'm about 12 in the left-hand match-book so the year must be 1961. The matchbooks are 3.5" wide and 4" tall.
The two are of one panoramic closeup split between the 2. Mom's wearing her favorite dining apparel- a lobster bib. Dad's in a suitjacket, of course!
Dad worked for Bell Tel but he still could take us all to a nice restaurant several times a year. Those were the days!”

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12. Anonymous said... on Dec 6, 2011 at 08:49PM

“Great town. Family owned house on bellvue ave. & boardwalk. Everyone sat out to all hours in front of houses. Town Tavern, WhiteHouse, Tony Baltimore Grill. Boardwalk @ night. Italian Village inside Million Dollar Pier. Acme on Atlanitc Ave. Wrestling @ Convention Hall on wednesday nights Cowboy friday's @ Steel Pier. Got in for 50 cents on friday with a coupon from acme supermarket. ( early 70's )
Loved the town. It did always have a shady side about it. I think that's what made it so cool. Those were the days!!!!”

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13. Wes Johnson said... on Dec 25, 2011 at 09:49PM

“It could seat 3200? Seriously? What is the source of that information?”

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14. Anonymous said... on Feb 18, 2012 at 05:26PM

“In the fifties I sang with a group on the Steel Pier. We stayed at a boarding house a couple blocks from the pier. I don't remember the name of the street or the name of the owners but we were treated like family. As often as we could we treated ourselves to dinner at Hackney's. Atlantic City was a magical place and this was a magical time in my life.”

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15. Anonymous said... on Mar 3, 2012 at 12:44AM

“what was the name of the first gourmet italian restaurant in harrahs marina ac”

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16. Tim said... on Mar 16, 2012 at 03:53PM

“What was the name of the restaurant next door to the Knife and Fork?”

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17. Anonymous said... on Jun 26, 2012 at 09:28AM

“Had forgotten about Hackney's and Starn's....did not go there that frequently as a child, but can remember my mother speaking of them, so we must have been there.

Does anyone remember the small but wonderful Shoreham hotel on Virginia Avenue? It was a door or two away from the Morton Hotel. Also, very close to a small restaurant named "Betty's" which had the most phenomenal home cooked food. Never had I had fried fish filet like that at Betty's (other than my mom's).

Thanks for the memories”

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18. Pittsburgh Doug said... on Aug 5, 2012 at 06:55PM

“Captain Starns was the best! And, tes it was more than a great restaurant.... it was a destination. The hustle and bustle around the dokcs, the constant clanging of silverware in the restaurant as large summer dinner party’s feasted o the fresh seafood. Starn’s galley, outside where it was a lot cheaper to eat the same seafood out in the fresh sea air, the boat rides, the seals.

It was the place you always visited at least once during your stay.

Too bad the politicians and planners who sold the city down the drain did not come up with a much better development plan that preserved these important historic elements.

Cape May embraced historic preservation and played to its strengths in remaking itself as a great beach town.

Poor Atlantic City missed that boat. At least I have many happy memories of having a bucket of longnecks and a bottle of beer at the Captain’s Galley and roaming the docks at Starn's Inlet.

Wonder what happened to those fine speed boats?

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19. Ken Shane said... on Aug 14, 2012 at 09:19AM

“I'm surprised that you didn't mention the White House, which is still going strong, and still making great sandwiches. Speaking of sandwiches, how about the great little place called Jimmy's-Just A Sandwich, which made these amazing, never duplicated steak sandwiches. As for upscale joints, how about Jack Guischard's, and Lou Tendler's, both on Atlantic Avenue? Then there was the unforgettable Bestman's in Margate, which later turned into the wonderful Jul on the Bay.”

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20. Susan said... on Sep 2, 2012 at 08:37PM

“I was born in AC. We lived in Chelsea Village, that was on the bay side. My dad worked at Bestman's. My mom worked at the Windsor Cafe on S. Carolina. That's where my parents met. Later my mom worked at Alfred's Villa. It must have been nice in the summer, we would go on the beach in the morning and they would go to work at 4PM. I remember feeding the pigeons on the boardwalk. I also have the lg matchbook photos. When we moved to Absecon my dad worked at Seaview Country Club. Unfortunately my dad died in 58 and we moved to MD. But my son-in-law is from Vineland. And he and his dad have played golf at Seaview's for yrs. Our families have shared a lot of great stories over the yrs. Their main place is Cape May. My mom says you never walked on the boardwalk in your bathing suit. You walked under. (circa 45-55). And her best line is: Once you have lived at the beach, you never get the sand out of your shoes. She is now 96.
Thanks for the stories. I've enjoyed reading and remembering.”

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21. Anonymous said... on Oct 7, 2012 at 09:34AM

“jimmys just a hobby,arkansas ave ,cheese cake in a safe ,only had 4 booths, bettys resyaurant moved to miami in the 60.s no longer there.”

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22. Tina Brooks said... on Oct 12, 2012 at 02:54PM

“My grandparents had a house in Brigantine. We would go to Captain Starns to walk around, feed the sea lions and then have dinner. I have very fond memories of Captain Starns and was very sorry to see it disappear.”

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23. Barb said... on Oct 30, 2012 at 03:49PM

“I lived on Vermont ave. with my grandmom and grandpop.Went to Holy Spirit.my grandpop had a guess your weight scale at Missouri ave and the boardwalk it was there for 50 yrs.when he passed one of my uncle's took it over I also lived on Congress ave,Texas ave went to Our Lady Star of the Sea and danced on Summer Time on the Pier.What good days they were so many of the great stores and hotels are gone.”

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24. Anthony Scull said... on Oct 30, 2012 at 08:19PM

“Loved the inlet as a child, my dad had a store in the inlet.
Sculls market (does anyone remember it ?)”

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25. Russ In Texas said... on Nov 12, 2012 at 07:45PM

“I am from AC, moved west at 3, but went back often. I remember going to Captain Starns with Grandmother in the 70's I love living in Texas, but the food in SNJ is worth the trip.

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26. Lynda said... on Dec 1, 2012 at 05:24PM

“I remember riding tandem down to Captain Starns from Ventnor down the boardwalk on Sundays and feeding the sea lions and having breakfast outside. I loved that! I also remember riding the jitney from Ventnor to go to Steel Pier. For only $5 you could see a movie, watch Tony's Allstars, go on the diving bell, see a concert, play games, and watch the diving horse. Those were great times growing up! I went to Angelos last time I was there. Wonderful food!”

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27. Anonymous said... on Dec 6, 2012 at 10:18PM

“Carson's Triangle, The Stanley, The Jem, The Toddle Inn, The Shamitz, Super Sub Shop, The Mayfair, Eddies, Maria's, the Great Josh.”

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28. Edward Winn said... on Jan 15, 2013 at 09:46PM

“I remember juniors and Franks from the 70s as well as hotel Feely”

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29. Beverly said... on Mar 25, 2013 at 10:58AM

“Your article came from a reader in Albuquerque, New Mexico, to me, now grounded in a Snow Storm in St. Louis, MO. Thanks so much. Brought back lots of good memories.”

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30. Camille said... on Apr 9, 2013 at 02:28PM

“I grew up in AC on the boardwalk, truly a wonderful place, world's playground. Every summer we went to Ice Capades at Convention Hall and ice cream at Ice cream island in the inlet section. Thanks for the memories”

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31. Mike Tabasso said... on Apr 15, 2013 at 07:12AM

“Loved the old days in AC. Enjoyed living at my family hotel, for the summer, the MARCONI, on Pacific Avenue, next to Cole's Atlantic Service Station and the Bamboo Club.
Too bad most people don't remember the old AC and what a gem it was!!”

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32. Diane (Toler) Duran said... on Apr 15, 2013 at 12:50PM

“This is so much fun to read, having been raised in A.C. and now living in VA. I miss a lot of A.C. My grandfather was the captain of the large beautiful sailboat that Capt. Starn's provided for tours for awhile and the joy I had was not to be believed getting to ride once in awhile. I lived on Main Ave. right where Capt. Starn's was for my early years, was there when the hurricane ushered in horrible stuff, but as a kid, it was a scary adventure, in 1944 bfore they named them....Thanks for sharing”

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33. Jane said... on Apr 22, 2013 at 04:10PM

“Does anyone know when Garwood Mills first opened - the year? Please email jcuddehe@comcast.net. Thanks”

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34. Pauline said... on May 21, 2013 at 08:59AM

“Woofies Resturant under Teplisky's (1954) which than moved to Morris & the Boardwalk. That was a 350 seat with a full bake shop in the basement.
My grandparents lived at 8 N. New Hampshire Ave. As a small child we would walk to Capt. Starns and sit by the jetties.The politicians have ruined Atlantic City.”

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35. LARRY ZIEVIS said... on Jun 1, 2013 at 09:17AM

“My Grandfather had a house built just after the Noreaster of 62'. Every Saturday during the summer he'd take me to Captain Starns to watch the fishing boats come in. I was only 5 but I can remember the huge fish being thrown on the docks. My Mom took me on the speedboat, I was hooked, had boats most of my life. We'd have dinner in that massive resturant with the boat attached to the front..............In 1995 I was fishing on my own boat in the Atlantic City Inlet and you could still see the remains of the resturant. I believe today it is all Condos. When I was 13 years old I was taken to Hackney's for my Conformation. We still have a picture of all of my family at a big table. In the picture my Parents were beautiful. How I miss those days and those places and my family”

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36. William McCloskey said... on Jun 9, 2013 at 07:16PM

“My grandparents on a boat from Captain Starn's: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10201242922977823&set=o.111031335626480&type=1&theater&notif_t=photo_comment”

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37. Perot Junke said... on Jun 11, 2013 at 05:48AM

“I lived on Newport Ave. in Ventnor,

Who remembers Lamberts and Shepp Kellys for ice cream? In Margate where the trolleys turned around, there was an ice cream place that was decorated with merry-go-rounds. Name?

The Knights of Columbus on Pacific Ave had a great restaurant. Anyone regardless of religion could join as an associate. Hylers on the Boardwalk, Mammy's Pancake House, Rappettis Italian on Ventnor Ave, the Vienna restaurants, Shumskys, Super Sub, Lou's, for hot roast beef sandwiches.


I had a job as an usher at the Warner movies every summer. It was on the boards at Arkansas Ave. They had live stage shows in 55' 56' ..Fred Waring, Martin and Lewis, Victor Borge.

Hanging out at the Chelsea and Ambassador beaches.

What a shame.....A.C ain't the same.”

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38. Roxy said... on Jul 3, 2013 at 10:16AM

“My parents had a summer home in Ventnor. I spent many rainy days on Steel Pier. Great movies and shows. I eventually appeared in Tony Grant's Stars of Tomorrow. It featured lots of kids who sang and danced. It was a great time of my life.
Times have surely changed. You never went on the boardwalk unless you were dressed properly. Women had to put this gizmo on their high heels so as not to catch their shoes between the boards.
Hi hat Joe's was favorite stop for teenagers. Hanging out at Celsea. Can't forget the Super Sub Shop.
Unfortunately, what was supposed to improve AC never happened. Same deteriorating city. Looks like Steve Wynn saw the handwriting on the wall and left.”

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39. Anonymous said... on Jul 14, 2013 at 09:59AM

“Does anyone remember a restaurant famous for its fried chicken in a basket? I think it was on Pacific and either Montpelier, Sovereign, Chelsea - in that area. It had an outdoor eating area along the length of the restaurant.”

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40. Surfside17 said... on Jul 20, 2013 at 02:33PM

“My family vacationed on the Jersey shore for years! We loved Zaberers! I was the little kid in the group then, and I have fond memories of dressing up to go out for dinner at the beach. Good memories of a great place that is missed 30 years later!”

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41. Bill said... on Jul 21, 2013 at 07:58PM

“I've started a facebook page for Captain Starn's Inlet Marina. I hope some of you will "like" it and post some of your memories...photos...memorabilia!”

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42. Lynn G said... on Jul 25, 2013 at 07:52PM

“My paternal grandparents owned a house at Ventnor and Annapolis Aves in Chelsea section. My maternal grandfather, Alfred J Perkins, owned Perkins Steam Bakery on 200 block of Connecticut Ave and was Sheriff of Atlantic County for a while and postmaster of AC for most of the twenties. Also, big in the Republican party, but that's another story! Have many fond memories of Atlantic City, of many years ago.”

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43. Beth said... on Jul 27, 2013 at 11:07AM

“Oh, AC in the good ole days..... When visiting Grandmom and Grandpop in Ventnor, we'd get dressed up, have dinner at Lou's, then walk the boardwalk. It 'shore' isn't what it used to be! I used to love seeing Mr. Peanut and play some of the arcade games like Skeeball. Those were the days. Nothing like it anymore; it was a whole different feel.”

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44. Cindy said... on Jul 27, 2013 at 11:25AM

“There was a small, intimate gourmet restaurant in AC (1980's) that I think began with an "S" where you got a seven course meal, prix fixe. Does anyone remember the name of it?

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45. Anonymous said... on Aug 15, 2013 at 12:48PM

“Bussed tables at Betty's on the Boardwalk, next to Traymore Hotel on Illinois, summer of '65. Remotely related to Hermie, the owner. 17 and single in A/C. What a summer.”

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46. Richard said... on Aug 31, 2013 at 12:31PM

“First job I ever had, coming from Nanticoke, PA, was a pantry boy at the Jem Restaurant on Pacific Ave. Went door to door back in 1961 (very bleak year) looking for a job as a busboy when I went into the Jem and asked Jack Rose (Max & Jack were the brother owners) for a job. He asked me if I knew what a "pantry boy" was to which I replied I didn't. He then said "Be here tomorrow morning at 7:30 and you'll learn". I never forgot that. My first real job . A nice owner and their cheesecake was to die for. Salary helped me pay for college and eventually got a Chemistry Ph.D. and worked in the Pentagon.”

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47. rjones said... on Sep 7, 2013 at 07:39PM


I have signed 1960 mitch miller photo souenir of pleasant viisit to captain starn's. Atlantic city nj. Whats its worth”

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48. atlantic city girl said... on Oct 5, 2013 at 09:42AM

“Born and raised most of the year (my father was owned auction houses on the boards so we travelled as lot). went to Massachusetts school, my sister went to Frienz and my my brother, A>C> High!! as a kid, besides Kent's Restaurant have that fabulous continuous belt of food going around and around who remembers these: Luigi's Italian Restaurant, SunRay Drugstore, Greyhound Bus Depot, Mister Peanut, Gray's Restaurant, the soda-mat, Mammy's Donuts, all the small, open aired places that sold touristy souveniers including 'pinwheels'.....and let's not forget the place on the boards that sold the turtles with Atlantc City painted on their back. There was also a large department store on Ventnor, i think it began with a B....help. so many memories, all so innocent and i need to mention, the pigeons, the eons of pigeons and the 5cent brown paper bag of feed you could buy to feed them.....ok, will stop now before i really get emotional....”

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49. atlantic city girl said... on Oct 5, 2013 at 09:46AM

“Born and raised most of the year (my father was owned auction houses on the boards so we travelled as lot). went to Massachusetts school, my sister went to Frienz and my my brother, A>C> High!! as a kid, besides Kent's Restaurant have that fabulous continuous belt of food going around and around who remembers these: Luigi's Italian Restaurant, SunRay Drugstore, Greyhound Bus Depot, Mister Peanut, Gray's Restaurant, the soda-mat, Mammy's Donuts, all the small, open aired places that sold touristy souveniers including 'pinwheels'.....and let's not forget the place on the boards that sold the turtles with Atlantc City painted on their back. There was also a large department store on Ventnor, i think it began with a B....help. so many memories, all so innocent and i need to mention, the pigeons, the eons of pigeons and the 5cent brown paper bag of feed you could buy to feed them.....ok, will stop now before i really get emotional....”

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50. Connie Green said... on Oct 11, 2013 at 09:22AM

“Live in Miami now but lived in Ventnor for a while, had hostess job at Captain Starn's, they fed us well, esp. homemade peach pie. What a great place, esp. the bar upstairs after work, where everyone gathered. Had my first alcoholic drink, a whiskey sour, at the lounge at the Traymore. Also learned how to eat raw clams at seafood place along the bay. Wonderful times.”

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51. Mike said... on Feb 3, 2014 at 03:14PM

“When I was a kid our vacations were always to Atlantic City. I loved the beach and the waves. Capt Stearns was THE place the family always went to We had a nice dinner then a nice boat ride. i remember going there at 6 and the last time at 27 with my wife. What a change. I have not been back to AC since then and am now 65.
During the time of our trips There was talk about someone's Florida Project.I always hoped when I got older I could go there but my family said AC was all we could afford. Now that AC had died and I am a grandfather I have found the money to go to "The Florida Project" Also know as Walt Disney World more times than I was ever taken to AC.”

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52. mike Herron said... on Feb 9, 2014 at 02:52PM

“Terrific piece on Capt. Starn restaurant. I remember a great meal there back in the 60s . But my best memories were at Ed Zaherers in North Wildwood Not only was it the best restaurant in the Wildwoods, but for a while in the 50s and early 60s, the only one open there. As a high school student in Wildwood, Zaberers was THE place. And Ed was outstanding person. AND very generous. I was his paperboy and the tips were great.


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53. Jim said... on Feb 16, 2014 at 06:56PM

“We had a summer house in Margate. Our first summer was 1945 I was 1 yo and turned 2 that summer. My grandmother bought the house "cheap" after the bad hurricane of 1944. My dad like to dine out Every summer we would eat out at places like Hackney's, Capt Starn's, and the Knife and Fork in AC Also Harry's and MAC's and a place next to MAC's it in Somer's Point. The Smithville Inn and Bleasy's Point INN along Route 9 Boemhler's in Margate was on our list. The Lobster House in Cape May after we went to see the sunken Concrete ship. We kids liked Starn's better than Hackley's so we did twice a summer at Starn's. I always had fried flounder and french fries. Those were the days. Today we took our youngest grandson ( 6 years old) to the Atlantic City Aquarium which is located about 500 feet from where Capt. Starns was located GREAT MEMORIES!!”

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54. Jim said... on Feb 16, 2014 at 07:20PM

“I read all the comment after I posted my last comment.

Yes the White House sub shop is still going strong.

The Steel Pier was great. I saw Ricky Nelson there as well as Bobby Darien and Roger Miller. The famous diving bell is on display outside the Atlantic City Aquarium at Garden's Basen”

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55. Barbara said... on Feb 23, 2014 at 01:22AM

“I went there with my family in 1960. I was just looking you up.”

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56. Anonymous said... on Mar 9, 2014 at 10:43PM

“are you kidding, this was the best place to grow up .
Iwas born nd rasied in ventnor, my parents had a business in ac, Iwas always in the resturats and on the boardwalk.

great place hope it comes back to life!”

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57. Jules Weiss said... on Apr 4, 2014 at 03:07AM

“I grew up in A.C. during the 1940s, before the sterile casino onslaught, when the boardwalk was a felliniesque dreamscape...When I conjure up that long, bygone world, I get quite nostalgic ("remembrance of things past"). My dad had a mensware store at 1538 Atlantic Ave., opposite the Hollywood Theater. julesweiss@sbcglobal.net”

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58. Tommy said... on Apr 10, 2014 at 06:30PM

“Went to Atlantic City every summer. We used to stop at this bar/restaurant on the black horse pike going and leaving. It had a bowling table game which I played while my father had a drink (or two) at the bar... Great memories...”

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59. BillK said... on Apr 16, 2014 at 02:24PM

“My parents took my brother and me and our grandmother to Atlantic City for one or two weeks every Summer beginning in 1954, and ending in 1966. The first night and last night were reserved for Captain Starn's. My brother loved to ride the speedboat, while I preferred strolling and watching and feeding the sea lions and also vaguely remember porpoises at the enclosure on one occasion. I also remember that on two occasions I had a daily catch of a tuna steak that was dark and cut like a beef steak. It was one of the best things I have ever eaten. My mother always laughed at what the one waitress would say to another when approaching unseen from the rear: "hot behind." I remember old family photographs taken there , and other meals of shrimp, seafood platter, ham with raisins, flounder, etc.Among other restaurants I enjoyed were the the one at the Columbus Hotel which had a fountain and served lobster, Childs, the Vienna, the Dugout, mammys donuts, and Taylor pork sandwiches.”

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60. Bob said... on May 30, 2014 at 01:02PM

“When I was twelve, my parents took me to Atlantic City (1956). We ate at Hackney's. I had my first lobster there. Great! My dad said that "this will all be gone soon." He did the same for Horn & Hardarts in NYC. Both are gone but the sweet memories remain.
P.S. My dad encouraged me to throw some peanuts at my mom's feet. She hated pigeons and we all had a big laugh.”

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61. JJT said... on Jul 4, 2014 at 01:33PM

“Wonderful to read of post-heyday, pre-gambling AC rememberances. My grandparents went down often from NYC and came back with the large matchbooks with photos and boxes of salt water taffy. In my pre-adolescent 60's our family would pile into the '64 Chevelle (no radio or AC and parents smoking like chimneys) literally on the last day of school and head down on the GS Pkwy. We'd stay at the Coronet motel, in the shadow of the old Haddon Hall (now Resorts). Dinners at Capt. Starns and Hackneys, early morning family bike rides on the Boardwalk, and the worst sunburns of my life. I think very fondly of those moments...”

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62. Anonymous said... on Jul 12, 2014 at 05:10PM

“I worked at the Mile Long Hot Dog Stand (3 summers) with Mr Jim and Eve Zabettas.. This was the best time of my life, they taught me so much at age 14 . I never got tired of watching the tourist and college kids roaming the Boards. I loved watching little kids be amazed at the cotton candy (piled high) Mr. Jim made the best Candied Apples and Chocolate Covered Bananas, The Carmel Corn was the best. When their nephew came 1 summer I had to find another job till they left, so 1 summer I worked as a shill for one of the souvenir shops.(I worked the shop the day (mostly stocking and running errands) I would make believe I won a huge stuffed animal and would walk up and down the boards saying where I won it. The Million Dollar Pier was a great place to find all my Italian Records (no such luck in Ca.) I loved working on the Steel Pier for awhile got to see Paul Anka, Tommy Sands, Fabian, Bobby Darin the original 3 Stooges. Friends Carmen Voci,Diane Slick,Maureen,Carol Sacco,Frannie,There”

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63. Linda said... on Jul 18, 2014 at 10:45PM

“Does anyone remember Carsons, they had the best shrimp salad. I have been trying for years to find someone who has the receipt. Please HELP

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64. Linda said... on Jul 18, 2014 at 10:49PM

“Does anyone remember Carsons, they had the best shrimp salad. I have been trying for years to find someone who has the receipt. Please HELP

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65. Anonymous said... on Aug 3, 2014 at 08:28AM

“A FEW YEARS BACK I WAS FISHING BY THE OLD RESTERANT AND UNDER AN OLD PILLING I FOUND A PERFECT CUP AND SAUCER FROM THE OLD RESTERANT WHAT A FIND , I STILL HAVE IT”

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66. Julie Tyler said... on Aug 7, 2014 at 06:26AM

“Does anyone remember The New Jersey Market on Arctic back in the 40s and 50s? Julius Frank was the owner if you have any memories of him or his family, they resided on Ventnor Avenue with their 2 daughters. Also looking for the name of a small appliance store in the 60s that was owned by a Jewish/Italian man, he was in his 30s back then, living at home and taking care of his elderly parents, not much to go on I know but any memories would help. Thanks, please email me anytime.”

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67. marian merlino said... on Aug 8, 2014 at 08:03PM

“I remember the old ac days, and always have fond memories of Hackneys, Steel Pier, Italian Village, I used to go from nyc with my family every summer when I was growing up. Mom and I used to ride the rented bikes on the boardwalk in the morning. GREAT memories for a kid to have! This kid is now 66. Mom and Dad are now gone, they were our best times together, illness later tore the family apart.

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68. Janet fox H said... on Aug 8, 2014 at 10:05PM

“My parents took me to different places for vacations growing up. One of which was AC when I was very young. I couldn't remember what restaruant it was that would offer taking your photos and have them made into matchbook covers. There was no name or address advertising the restaruant. However using a magnifying glass I can see an oversized goblet style glass with the name "Hackney's" on it. So fun reading everyone's memories of the 'good ol' days' . thank you”

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69. Pat said... on Aug 31, 2014 at 08:30AM

“Gosh I remember Carson's. We used to drive from Philly just to get the lobster tail....”

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70. A TENDLER said... on Sep 1, 2014 at 11:08PM

“I remember Carson's. It burned down. We used to spend ever summer at the Sheraton Dueville. My grandmother lived in Chelsea, and my other grandmother had a boarding house there in the 40's and 50's. My great Uncle had a restaurant called Mammy's and also Lew Tendler's Steak House.”

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71. Marvin said... on Sep 7, 2014 at 02:35AM

“Does anyone remember the Aruba motel in margate at Coolidge and pacific
Also there was a good restaurant called Andy's in ventnor. I think he was the son of the people who owned Lou's . This was in the 70's”

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72. John from Pittsburgh said... on Sep 13, 2014 at 03:31PM

“Born (1944) and raised in Pittsburgh (GO STEELERS) and each summer for many year our family of 5 plus Leo Greenburg would ride in my dad's car to AC. We always stayed at The Mayflower Hotel, had breakfast at The Ranch House and dinner at Hackneys and Captain Starns........MANY MANY memories of wonderful AC.
IN 1966 prior to deploying to Viet Nam my wife and I stopped in AC, stayed at The a Mayflower, had breakfast at The Ranch House and dinner at Captain Starns where they took our picture at our dinner table. Along with those memories we still have that picture.

WE MISS YOU OLD ATLANTIC CITY.

WE ARE NOW RETIRED LIVING IN GONZALES, LOUISIANA.”

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73. John said... on Sep 13, 2014 at 03:37PM

“I just made a long post and I do not see it?”

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74. John said... on Sep 13, 2014 at 03:37PM

“I just made a long post and I do not see it?”

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75. John said... on Sep 13, 2014 at 03:37PM

“I just made a long post and I do not see it?”

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76. John said... on Sep 14, 2014 at 02:02PM

“Do ya all remember the large MR. PEANUT on the Boardwalk in front of the Planters Peanut store?”

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