A Texas restaurant is defending a controversial sign that some say is racist.
The sign consists of a Black man wearing a porter’s cap with the words Coon Chicken Inn written inside the mouth.
A person attending their company Christmas party on Wednesday night at Cook’s Garage noticed the sign on the wall. The person posted photos of the sign on Facebook and got the attention of the owners of Cook’s Garage — and the public.
The owners of the restaurant responded to the person’s complaint, defending the sign as part of American history.
The now-deleted post said:
“We did not put this sign up to be derogatory, racist or to offend anyone. This is part of Americana History…just like everything else hung in our collection and buildings.” The post also contains images of the sign, and other signs they have collected, which are all hanging on the walls of the restaurant. Aunt Jemima, mammies, and lots of other black collectibles are highly sought after, as is Americana collectibles with white characters. The Coon Chicken Inn was an actual restaurant started in the 20’s. Again, we want to stress we do not intend to offend anyone, and are only preserving a part of history that should remind us all of the senselessness of racial prejudice.”
If the restaurant contains a bunch of historical artifacts — similar to a museum — should this racist sign be taken down?
According to the Ferris State University Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia:
The Coon Chicken Inn was a highly successful restaurant chain from the late 1920s through the 1950s. A grinning, grotesque head of a bald Black man with a porter’s cap and winking eye formed a restaurant’s entryway. The door was through the middle of his mouth. The restaurants sold southern fried Coon Chicken sandwiches, chicken pie, livers — and hamburgers, seafood, chili, cakes, and assorted sandwiches. When possible, Blacks were used as waiters, waitresses, and cooks.
What are your thoughts on this, love muffins?