New Boston Historical Society
New Boston, New Hampshire
Bob & Marjorie Bose in Kane's Luncheonette - 1959
The Luncheonette"Luncheonette" is a uniquely American word that describes "a small restaurant, similar to a diner, where the patron sits on a stool on one side of the counter." Kane's Luncheonette is one of several which operated in the building that is now Tates Gallery, beside the bridge in New Boston's Central Square. The photograph at the top of this page, in which Paula LeBaron's parents are seated at the lunch counter in Kane's, reminds me of a Norman Rockwell painting.
Greer's Drugstore - photo from Granite Monthly, 1897
Hagland's Drugstore in the 1920s - built by Ernest Bartlett
The left half of the building was Ernest Hagland's store; there was a grocery store to the right, and at one time, gas pumps out front.
Drugstore (left) and The Tavern (right)
The War Memorial you see in the traffic circle was moved to the Town Green in 1947.
Ernest "Pop" Hagland - 1932
What is the connection between drugstores and ice cream? I don't know!
Kane's Luncheonette - 1961
Barney and Dorothea had two sons, and it was their younger son Steve Kane who shared his mother's photo albums with me, and his memories of New Boston in the 1950s, too. The Kane house next to the luncheonette was in the center of town, so the 4th of July parade passed right by their front doorstep, as you'll see in the photos below.
4th of July parade - 1955
This parade float was sponsored by Cott Beverages, as sold in Kane's Luncheonette.
Edgar Clayton Cann (in the top-hat) was Barney Kane's step-grandfather.
Babson Reports Library - 1961
On August 12, 1957, Kane's Luncheonette caught on fire in the middle of the night; a problem with a water heater was the suspected cause. Barney and Skibby awoke at 1:00AM to the sound of bottles of tonic exploding next door. Skibby bundled their children out of the house while Barney raised the alarm. Volunteer firemen (including Barney) directed by Fire Chief Robert Barss fought the blaze and saved the Kane house. The newspaper reported that the store and its contents were declared a total loss.
Barney Kane in the doorway of his new store
Dorothea "Skibby" Kane behind the lunch counter of the "new store" - 1957
Seated are: Barney's nieces Sharon and Sandy Todd, and Oliver Bailey who worked in Homer Dodge's store.
Christmas dinner 1957
During hunting season, Barney opened his luncheonette before dawn so that hunters could grab a cup of coffee and something to eat. In 1963, after fourteen years of working long, long hours, the Kanes sold their store and moved to Merrimack.
Pringle's Store - 1963
For many years, the building was the home of Hunter's Angling Supplies. Bill Hunter sold everything a fly fisherman might need, and you often saw someone standing in the parking lot, practising their fly-casting.
Tates Gallery 2019
If you want to sit down and have a bite to eat in the center of New Boston, there is a café only a stone's throw away. The café is delightful; however it does not have a luncheonette counter, or shiny metal stools, or a sign listing all the flavors of Hood ice cream.
--Dan R. 2019