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Black businesses Black businesspeople Demolished buildings economics Food Ice cream Long School Lost history Near North Side North 24th Street Segregation

History of the 24th Street Dairy Queen

From 1951 to 1963, the 24th Street Dairy Queen was serve the Black community in the Near North Side. This is a history of the business.

North Omaha has a long history of segregated businesses. Informal Jim Crow rules kept African Americans from owning, operating, and enjoying many businesses in the community. This is a history of North Omaha’s Black-owned Dairy Queen franchise.

1956 Dairy Queen ad, Omaha, Nebraska
The North Omaha Dairy Queen was located on the southwest corner of N. 24th and Blondo Streets. The building looked like the one shown here, except that, according to Albert Tibbs, all the customers were Black.

After soft-serve ice cream was invented in 1938, the first Dairy Queen opened in 1940 in Illinois. There were more than 2,500 franchises by 1950, including four in Omaha.

Dairy Queen, N. 24th and Blondo Street, North Omaha, Nebraska
This is a July 5, 1951 ad from the Omaha Star for the “New Dairy Queen” at 24th and Blondo.

In 1950, a new Dairy Queen opened at 1922 North 24th Streets, on the corner of Blondo Street between the Near North Side neighborhood and the Long School Neighborhood. It was notable to the Omaha Star when the business hired an African American woman to work the counter. It operated without note for several years.

Dairy Queen, N. 24th and Blondo Street, North Omaha, Nebraska
This is a 1961 ad including the Dairy Queen at N. 24th and Blondo.

In 1958, the Omaha Star reported that “Albert ‘Al’ Tibbs, popular young man about town, recently invested his future in the Near Northside.” For the next several years, Tibbs operated the Dairy Queen.

The business closed around 1963, and Tibbs was working as an employment counselor for the Nebraska Employment Service by 1969.

After it was Dairy Queen, the building on the southwest corner of North 24th and Blondo served many other purposes, including being Sadie’s Bakery. The pic at the beginning of this article shows the building as of 2019.

You Might Like…

  • History of Black-Owned Businesses in Omaha
  • History of North 24th Street
  • History of the Near North Side Neighborhood
Dairy Queen North 24th and Blondo Street, North Omaha, Nebraska
This is the former North 24th Street Dairy Queen, which was open from 1951 to 1963.

One reply on “History of the 24th Street Dairy Queen”

When dairy queen opening, my Mom was giving birth to me.
I went to school with Sadie’s son, John Biddle. He was a basketball player at Central High School. Sadie’s was one of the places we would stop at on our way home from school. Thanks for sharing!!

Liked by 1 person

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