The House That Hamburgers Paid For
The Depression hit America in November 1929. Folks found themselves without jobs, the banks closing, their savings gone, and homes being foreclosed upon, much like today’s economic downturn... though today’s situation is nowhere near as bleak as it was in 1929.
The DuPerrieus had been living in an apartment, called the Lennox, just two rooms in all.
By this time, Frenchie had gone to work as the manager of the Dixie Castle at 529 Broadway, just across the street from the Catholic Church and half a block from their apartment. In 1933, Frenchie bought the restaurant and changed the name to The Golden Tower. The restaurant served BBQ, hamburgers and short orders. It was a busy little endeavor, and both Frenchie and his wife, Emma, worked hard.
Then tragedy fell. In January 1937, the worst flood to ever hit Paducah struck. Downtown Paducah was flooded. The DuPerrieus evacuated to Mayfield. But at the first opportunity, Frenchie was back, and a herculean clean up began. His restaurant was the only one with the plate glass windows still intact, and Frenchie got the jump on the other restaurants and started flipping burgers, at two for a nickel. He cooked 14 hours a day, feeding the hungry, and in just two months, made enough to buy his first home at 3231 Madison Street. Talk about hard work paying big dividends... even in the midst of hard times!