The 15 Biggest Failed Restaurant Chains

Horn & Hardart

The automat is a defunct restaurant concept, but in its day it was a reliable way to get a quick and tasty meal. Individual sandwiches, salads, pies, and cakes were visible behind tiny glass doors.

Insert some nickels into the slot, the door would open, and the dish would be yours.

Horn and Hardart, which was founded in Philadelphia in 1888, was the undisputed king of the automat during its golden years from the 1920s through the 1950s, with more than 150 locations in Philadelphia and more than 50 in New York.

Unfortunately, with the rise of fast food in the 1960s and ‘70s, the chain took a major hit, and the final location, on 42nd Street and Third Avenue in New York, closed in 1991.

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