About The Hometown Diner
The Hometown Diner is more than just a place to quench your appetite.
We feel that every meal, regardless of the time of day, should be special.
The Hometown Diner is not only a great family restaurant, but an awesome place for all the great people traveling the highways and byways of New England! All four seasons are special in Rindge, New Hampshire, and we would love to meet you any time you are in our Hometown!
of The Hometown Diner
The Hometown Diner was originally manufactured The Silk City Diner Company, which was a division of the Patterson Wagon Company, based in Patterson New Jersey. Approximately 1500 Diners were built from 1927 until production ceased in 1966. One of the ways to determine if a Diner was produced by The Silk City Diner Company is to locate its “tag”. These tags were like the VIN number on your car. It would identify what year a diner was made, and the manufacturing sequence. For example, a diner with the tag of 5607 would have been the seventh diner made in 1956. The Hometown Diner’s tag # is 4931, therefore, it was #31 off the production line in 1949.
Several Silk City Diners are on the National Register of historic locations, including the Village Diner in Red Hook, New York, and The Tick Tock Diner in Clifton, New Jersey. Early models of Silk City Diners had porcelain steel facades. “Later” models came with stainless steel facades, as this was a much more durable finish, This is also the finish most people associate with “classic” Diners. Right now, we are working on the complete history of the Diner, but it is hard to find information prior to 1970. It would be so much easier if the Internet was invented back in 1945….
What we do know is that in the early 1970’s, Mr. John Evans of East London, Kentucky bought the Diner from a Mr. Ray Reams as basically an investment. It was a kind of a “flip this Diner” type of thing. However, the deal fell through, and now, John Evans had a diner that he wasn’t planning on owning. At that time, Mr. Evans owned a successful excavating company, however after 35 years; he decided to start the next chapter of his life, so John Evans and his wife Mae, opened “The Silver Diner” in the fall of 1977. John Evans passed away in 1998, and Mae continued to run the Diner until it closed on December 31st, 2005.
At this point, The Silver Diner remained closed until discovered by Steve Harvin of Diversified Diners, headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio. Mr. Harvin was quite familiar with Silk City Diners, having purchased and renovated others in the past. This particular renovation was different in the fact that this “newer” model had stainless steel siding, as opposed to the porcelain clad steel of the earlier models. Fortunately, the interior was, and is pretty much original. I say this because I can not find anything that points to any remodeling of the interior. To accomplish the renovation, Mr. Harwin traveled to Meriden, Ct and studied the Cassidy Diner, which was much closer to what The Hometown Diner was originally. Even after making this trip, Mr. Harwin had to get the stainless steel pieces fabricated, and then put the pieces of the puzzle together. Once the Diner was done, it was then sold to Mathias Kaplanow, who had it moved to Lima, Ohio and named it “The Hometown Diner. Mr. Kaplanow, who is a citizen of Germany, had attended Lima State Technical College. Unfortunately, Mr. Kaplanow found out you could not efficiently run a Diner from Germany, so the Hometown Diner closed in July of 2012.
It was after this that the Hometown Diner was then purchased, and moved to its current location at 1417 Route 119, Rindge, New Hampshire. This in itself was no small feat. Basically, the job entailed taking the Diner apart, piece by piece, labeling each of these pieces, and transporting it to its new home. The process was then reversed, and the puzzle was put back together. The Hometown Diner officially opened its doors on October 4th, 2013 and has quickly become a “hometown” favorite.
In 2020 when Covid hit, the Hometown Diner shut its doors once again. Rudy Rosalez, the owner of the Woodbound Inn, was able to purchase the Diner and rehire about 90% of its staff. The Hometown Diner re-opened in the late summer of 2020 and has been serving ever since!
Notes: Much of this information was obtained from Steve Cultera’s website Diner Hotline Weblog.
Check out this very cool website for an in depth history of Diners throughout the country. Silver City Diner images also courtesy of Diner Hotline Weblog.