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Chain Restaurants: How They Got Their Starts

Chain Restaurant History

Today, it may seem like there is a Dunkin' Donuts in every town, but that wasn't always the case. It all started with one mom-and-pop shop that opened in 1950. From that one establishment, a chain was born. But even so, the popular breakfast and doughnut stores only exploded worldwide within the past decade. Many of the most popular chain restaurants -- from Subway to Applebee's -- had similar humble beginnings.

WalletPop took a look at some of America's most popular chain restaurants to see where it all began. What they found were deeply rooted entrepreneurial histories, that remind us why we fell in love with them in the first place.

Read on to find out how your favorite chains got their starts.

(AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

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