Saturday, August 27, 2011
Where Go My Escargot?
Another landmark Mooresville (well, close to) restaurant is under the demolition ball. It is sad on so many levels. NOW where will I get my escargot?
The Great Escargot Escape
Chez Jean Restaurant François (a mile or two north of Mooresville on State Road 67; technically, in Camby, Indiana) first opened for business in July, 1957. It celebrated its 50th anniversary in July, 2007, but sometime thereafter (2008, according to one report) the place was closed, for sale, and weedy. Now it is quite definitely going the way of the wrecking ball.
Au Revoir, Vieil Ami
(Thanks to Buffalo Gal for these photos of the Chez Jean.)
The inn portion of Chez Jean had some near-personal significance. Scowl-Face, who, as you know, is one of my lesser library colleagues, spent the night there before his wedding at the Mooresville United Methodist Church (formerly the Methodist Episcopal, or M.E., Church). (He and his family, who were not M'ville Pioneer natives ["Mo-Pi's"], came from out-of-town for the wedding.)
United Methodist Church on May 31, 1980
If you're interested in the history of the M.E. Church, go here. If not, then don't. It's your call.
Businesses come and go in small towns, of course, as proprietors retire or pass over, but it is a sad event nonetheless. We mark our personal histories by the establishments we frequented or were familiar with during our formative years. Certainly, Chez Jean was a familiar landmark for anyone who grew up in Mooresville during the past half century. Soon it will be only a memory, filed away in my Library's Indiana Room vertical files. Could I have a tissue, please? There's something in my eye.
Cauli Le Chat
MPL Roving Reporter
Home Town Eatery News Beat
P.S. Here is a melancholy look at small town America and the passing of wonderful hangouts. Simon & Garfunkel rejoined forces to record "My Little Town" in 1975. Visit the official S & G website for lots of cool information about this classic folk-rock duo.
P.P.S. Here is another moving look at our changing hometowns: Bruce Springsteen's "My Hometown," which closed side two of the Born in the U.S.A. album (1984). Here is a music video of one of Bruce's live performances of the song.