AskDefine | Define luncheonette

User Contributed Dictionary



  1. A small diner or restaurant that serves lunch.

Extensive Definition

A lunch counter is a small restaurant, much like a diner, where the patron sits on a stool on one side of the bar and the server serves from the other side of the bar, where the kitchen is. As the name suggests, they were most widely used for the lunch meal. Lunch counters were often found in five and dime stores, like Woolworths, S. H. Kress, H.L. Green, McLellan's or McCrory's.
Integrating lunch counters in the US South was a major accomplishment of the United States civil rights movement of the 1960s, using sit-ins. These involved minorities and their supporters sitting at the lunch counter in areas designated for whites-only, demanding service.
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