Wednesday, September 14, 2016
The Kewpee and Markley's
When the Kewpee Hotel opened on September 14, 1939, several area businesses offered their best wishes in the Sandusky Register. A regular hamburger sold for ten cents, and a deluxe hamburger cost fifteen cents. The advertisement stated that the restaurant was “Sandusky’s Only Hamburg Shop.” Besides hamburgers, the Kewpee featured malted milks, a full line of beverages, pies, rolls, and cereals. Kewpee Hotel restaurants were started by Sam Blair in Flint, Michigan in the 1920s. Soon Kewpee Hotel restaurants opened in nearby states.
By the late 1940s, the restaurant was known as the Kewpee Lunch; in 1954, it was sold by owners Carl and Helen Ruth to Lyle Mayhew. The new name of the restaurant was the Whitehouse Restaurant, and Lyle’s brother in law Roger Markley was the manager. Eventually Mr. Markley acquired the restaurant, and it became known as Markley’s. In the 1960s, the doorway was moved from the corner of the restaurant to the Market Street side of the building. Many a young person went to Markley’s after Sandusky High School sporting events. The chili was very comforting after sitting out in the cold weather for a football game. A longtime staff member of the Sandusky Library fondly recalls the Little Sister sandwich from Markley’s.
Markley’s closed about 2010, and now a Subway shop and Amarone Italian Restaurant share the site.