Payne's Still Evokes Memories Of Poodle Skirts And T-Birds On The Square In Scottsboro

Monday, July 22, 2019 - by John Wilson

One recent diner at Payne's on the square in Scottsboro, Ala., said it brought to mind the days of "poodle-skirts, greased hair, and sweet T-birds."

The popular diner that dates back a century and a half is regularly packed with locals and visitors alike harkening back to the "good ole days" of the 50s.

William Henry Payne established a drug store in 1869 and it later included a fountain with ice cream, milk shakes, giant banana splits and the works. The drug store lasted until 1991, but the dining part kept going. Jessica Walton is currently the general manager and one of the cooks.

It is now believed to be the oldest continuously operating commercial business in Alabama.

The narrow brick building across from the Jackson County Courthouse dates to 1891. Several generations of Paynes took turns operating it.

In addition to the "red slaw dogs", triple salad sliders and other unique delicacies, there's lots of people watching. You can also stay entertained with all the memorabilia. There's a handsome juke box as well as a charming Betty Boop.

A sign tells of an Elvis concert in his hometown of Tupelo with admission just $2. Wouldn't you have liked to have been there?

Another illustration displays the advancement of the Coca Cola glass bottle to the familiar eight ounce with the name of the towns on the bottom. Of course, they serve Coke.

And senior citizens get ice cream for a nickel on Thursdays. 

Payne's is just down the road from Scottsboro's biggest attraction - Unclaimed Baggage Center.

 

 


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