True Diner1319 Old Birmingham Hwy (CTY-511)
Status: Closed or missing
Last Updated: Feb. 20, 2019
5PFH+27 Sylacauga, Alabama
Across from W. 4th St.
Ten-stool Valentine. The second White Midget diner to open. The original opened in North Augusta, South Carolina, c. 1947 near the Savannah River Site, “near Aiken, SC, and about 25 miles from Augusta, Georgia where Camp Gordon was located.” (See 1st B.B. Comer article, linked.)
This second White Midget opened 1951, brought in from Fort Wayne, Indiana by Ruby Diarmid, who purchased it for $10,000 and originally placed on West Fort Williams Street between two service stations (Ham’s Gulf Station and Jimmy Rudd’s Pure Oil Service Station), at approximately 101 W. Ft. Williams Ave. In 1953, she sold it to her brother Claude Newman, who in 1955 moved it to its present location to have more room for outdoor seating and parking, and then added a DJ booth on top of the roof to entertain teenage patrons, inspired by a similar setup at the Sky Castle Diner in Birmingham (7th Ave. So.). The diner closed in 1960.
Though the extant diner is presently inside the current Allcomm Wireless building at the address above, serving as an employee break area, when it was in service it stood next door, at the corner with West Highland Avenue, at a spot by a jug-handle pull-off marked by a present monument known as the White Midget marker, with many names of past patrons on it.
[Thanks to Ginger Clifton of B.B. Comer Memorial Library of Sylacauga, who supplied many helpful details, including original information from Ray Diarmid.]