Website dedicated to Colonel Sanders tells story of his legacy

The world's largest fast-food chicken chain has set up an online archive dedicated to keeping the legacy of its original founder alive.

More than 30 years after his death, KFC is resurrecting the memory of Colonel Harland Sanders, whose face still graces every bucket of deep-fried chicken but whose story is relatively unknown among its millions of customers.

Spearheaded by the colonel's assistant, Shirley Topmiller, the website also invites people with personal memories of the colonel and his family to contribute their stories.

The collection of photos, videos and testimonials tell the archetypal American success story of a humble man who, at the age of 65, turned a $105 social security check into a global chicken empire.

Though today the chain serves 12 million customers in 109 countries around the world, the multinational chain started in the humble kitchen of a service station, where the colonel served what is now known as his original recipe chicken on his own dining table.

Prior to his success, the sixth-grade dropout had worked as a farmhand, an army mule-tender, a locomotive fireman, railroad worker, insurance salesman and tire salesman before opening up a service station in Corbin, Kentucky, at the age of 40. There, he fed hungry travelers his signature chicken and soon invented the "home meal replacement," complete meals he called "Sunday Dinner, Seven Days a Week," created for busy time-strapped families.

When a new interstate highway forced the closure of his restaurant, the colonel, then 65, took his "secret recipe" of 11 herbs and spices and his $105 check and pounded the pavement, striking handshake deals with restaurant owners who agreed to sell his fried chicken.

Today, KFC is the largest chicken chain in the world.

Launched early this week, the site already has testimonials from people who had met the colonel, a man who was easily identifiable by his signature white suit, neatly trimmed moustache, snow-white hair and spectacles.

But perhaps most telling is the fact that while the he was a poultry champion, even the colonel couldn't eat chicken every day.

 "I met the Colonel back in 1973. I believe I was working in a cafeteria in Lauderhill, Fla," wrote Lorri Jewell. "I was on the serving line and I asked him if he wanted some chicken, and he laughed and took the fish instead."

The colonel died in 1980 at the age of 90.

Meanwhile, Kenny Rogers serves as another silver-haired face of a chicken franchise, Kenny Rogers Roasters, which now mainly operates stores in Asia after closing most of its US locations. The chain was developed with the help of former Kentucky governor John Y. Brown Jr., who also owned KFC from 1964 to 1971.

For more from the colonel's website, visit http://www.colonelsanders.com/.

 

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    Guru Careers: Events Coordinator / Junior Events Planner

    £24K + Excellent Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking an Events Coordinator ...

    Royal Yachting Association Cymru Wales: Chief Executive Officer

    Salary 42,000: Royal Yachting Association Cymru Wales: The CEO is responsible ...

    Guru Careers: Marketing Manager / Marketing Communications Manager

    £35-40k (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Marketing Communicati...

    Ashdown Group: Technical IT Manager - North London - Growing business

    £40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A growing business that has been ope...

    Day In a Page

    Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

    Sun, sex and an anthropological study

    One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
    From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

    Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

    'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
    'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

    Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

    This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
    Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

    Songs from the bell jar

    Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
    How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

    One man's day in high heels

    ...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
    Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

    Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

    Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
    The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

    King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

    The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
    More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

    End of the Aussie brain drain

    More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
    Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

    Can meditation be bad for you?

    Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
    Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

    Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

    Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
    Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

    Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

    Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
    Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

    Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

    Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
    Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

    Join the tequila gold rush

    The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
    12 best statement wallpapers

    12 best statement wallpapers

    Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
    Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

    Paul Scholes column

    Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?