Gaiety Sandwich Shop — an Update

Gaiety Sandwich ShopPeople constantly scour the Internet seeking the newest of the new. What I love about the Internet is that it is also a nearly infinite backlog of information. There is something for everyone, and something that may have been posted years ago is always new to a fresh pair of eyes. Case in point is the above photo which is a 35mm negative I shot as part of an art school course and forgot about in 1982; rediscovered and scanned 10 years ago and wrote a post about it on this website back in 2011. When I wrote the post, I had no idea where I shot it. I knew it was in Center City Philadelphia, but I had no idea of the exact locale until a fresh pair of eyes fell upon the post, and the owner of those eyeballs reached out.

Dennis Kirkpatrick sent me an email with the location information I so sorely lacked:

I was happy to see your photo. The address was 136 S 15th Street. This shot was of Moravian Street a small branch off of 15th facing south. The Gaiety Sandwich Shop was in my family from 1979 to 1989. We closed due to my father’s health.

Better still, Mr. Kirkpatrick also knew the gentleman in the picture who I always assumed was just a passerby I accidentally captured on film:

The gentleman in the photo worked for my dad and his name was Lee Finney. He washed dishes and cleaned up. He was taking out the garbage here as our garbage cans were directly under that sign and the dumpster to the right.

Thanks so much, Mr. Kirkpatrick!

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11 Responses to Gaiety Sandwich Shop — an Update

  1. Great shot! Cool subject matter too. Goes straight to me stomach LOL

  2. Tina says:

    The sign painted on the exterior is marvelous!

  3. Joe_Williams says:

    I would be lost if it wasn’t for people scouring the internet!

  4. L E Dezygnher Originalz says:

    Everyone – I know the name from wondering around town after Saturday classes be those of Moore or PCA. Did Pikkles Plus takeover that space???

  5. L E Dezygnher Originalz says:

    I remember it on 15 or 16th between Chestnut and Locust in the 80’s…not as it ended on Marker…Pikkles Plus – CLOSED – 14 Reviews – Delis – 1801 Market St, Penn …

  6. Joe_Williams says:

    I’m not sure what is there now.

  7. Dennis Kirkpatrick. says:

    Hi all. Dennis here again, resident expert from that area back in the 80’s. Pickles Plus was a different sandwich shop. We had several within two blocks. The Gaiety, Charlie’s Water Wheel, Jimmy’s Paper Plate and Pickles Plus. Currently the location of our Gaiety is an Apple Store. We did win Best of Philly Tuna Hoagie in 1984!

  8. Joe says:

    I remember the tile on the front of Jimmy’s Paper Plate.

  9. cecelia mader says:

    I worked at Gaiety 1986-87 and remember Lee, Dennis and Trixie the surly waitress. I still make my tuna salad exactly the way I was taught by Jack Fitzpatrick…the secret award winning recipe of 1984.

  10. cecelia mader says:

    I may be remembering wrong…it might have been Dan Kirkpatrick that taught me Gaiety’s famous award winning tuna salad. Trixie was the most memorable of the bunch…and I always suspected Lee the dishwasher had a nip or two when he went to take out the trash…

  11. Joe says:

    Thanks so much for visiting the page and commenting! I love that there are people out there supplying me with pieces to complete my various puzzles!

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