The English Diner opened in 1939 on the corner of Wicomico Street and Baltimore Avenue. Moved to 21st Street and Philadelphia Avenue in the last 1950s, it was one of Ocean City’s most popular family restaurants.
It was known as “Little City Hall” for the daily breakfast gatherings of Ocean City’s political elite during the years that Hugh Cropper, Harry Kelley and Roland “Fish” Powell served as mayors.
The English Diner was demolished in November 2005 and the Mariner’s Watch condominium was built on the site the following year.
Photo by Bunk Mann from Nov. 6, 2005
The Ocean City Beach Patrol (OCBP) served the town with great distinction during the summer of 1942-45. With most men over the age of 18 in the service, the OCBP relied on young men aged 15 to 17 to protect the beaches. It is a proud footnote to the history of Ocean City that no drownings were recorded on a … Continue reading
Much of the bayside was still undeveloped in this aerial view of 53rd to 54th streets in the mid-1970s. Boulden’s Marina — today the site of Beach World, Chauncey’s Surf-O-Rama and Bayside Rentals — is in the center of the photo while the large grassy area is now occupied by the San Remo Condominium. The small island in the background … Continue reading
The Ocean City Police Department (OCPD) in the years following World War II was small but adequate for what was then a seasonal town only 25 blocks long. There was just one police car prior to 1953 and police headquarters shared a building with City Hall on Dorchester Street. The police force was augmented for the summer season with its … Continue reading
This circa 1915 photo is of the George Conner family, pioneers in Ocean City’s hotel and restaurant industry. George Conner (1874-1916) opened Ocean City’s first restaurant on the Boardwalk at S. Division Street in 1892; his wife, Willye Jones Conner (1886-1971) — known to later generations as Willye Conner Ludlam — purchased the Hastings Hotel in 1922. Still active in … Continue reading
When a firefighter dies, it is said that “he has answered his last alarm.” Charles Elliott passed away on Oct. 22, 2008 and Engine 8, the Ocean City Volunteer Fire Company’s antique parade piece (a 1953 Ford/American) was draped in black and placed on the ramp at the 15th Street fire headquarters. Less than a week later on Oct. 27, … Continue reading
In a precursor to American involvement in World War II, the Norwegian freighter “Olaf Bergh” ran aground about 60 yards off the beach at 94th Street on March 7, 1941. The ship was hugging the coastline to avoid German submarines that were lurking offshore. The U.S. Coast Guard stationed in Ocean City rescued the crew by means of a breeches … Continue reading
The Samoa and Mario’s were two of Ocean City’s most popular restaurants in the late 1960s. Located in Philadelphia Avenue between 22nd and 23rd streets, the Samoa moved two blocks north in 1969 and is now the location of a Sunsations store. Mario’s was a favorite of Ocean City’s locals and stayed open year-round serving some of the resort’s best … Continue reading
The Alamo Court was the first motel in Worcester County. Bill Weaver, a former World War II fighter pilot, bought two acres along the then new Route 50 entrance to Ocean City in 1946 and hired contractor Ridge Harman, Sr. to build a 40-unit motel. Weaver had been stationed in San Antonio, Texas during his Army Air Force training and … Continue reading
Ocean City’s 9th Street was the big hangout for the college-age crowd during the 1950s and 1960s. One of the major attractions was the Beach Club where live bands provided a party atmosphere and beer flowed freely. Next door, Tom Shill’s Hamburger Heaven served hot dogs, burgers and fries and had a unique machine that rolled out perfectly formed hamburger … Continue reading