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Alongi’s

This small-town Illinois pizzeria has hosted the likes of Willie Nelson, Bob Hope, Stan Musial and Sonny & Cher. In the small mining community of DuQuoin, Illinois, Alongi’s is a true survivor: Sicilian immigrant Guy Alongi started his business in 1933, during the height of the Great Depression, and his family has continued to weather…

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Arcaro & Genell

For more than half a century, this legendary pizza spot has stood out in the so-called “Pizza Capital of the World.” In 1962, Angelo and Marie Genell partnered with Marie’s two brothers, Frank and Anthony Arcaro, to buy Laurenzi’s Restaurant in Old Forge, Pennsylvania. Not surprisingly, they christened the new venture Arcaro & Genell. Though…

Ken Petti, with his wife, Almeda, introduced Master Pizza in 1955.

Master Pizza

After nearly 60 years in business, this Cleveland-area pizzeria keeps up with the times through aggressive marketing and social media strategies. Not long after opening Master Pizza (masterpizza.com) in Mayfield Heights, Ohio, in 1955, founder Ken Petti was primed for impressive growth. By 1960, he took on four partners to start franchising—the first business to…

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Sal and Carmine

Founded by “the Dom DeMarco of Manhattan,” this Upper West Side pizzeria has been serving up slices and ices for more than 50 years. After immigrating to the United States from Italy in 1957, Sal Malanga worked 22 hours a day to save up for a pizza shop, and in the summer of 1959, that…

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Santarpio’s Pizza

Baseball-loving Joseph Santarpio gave up a shot at playing for the New York Yankees to run his dad’s bakery—and Red Sox pizza fans are forever grateful. Pizza might never have been introduced at Boston-based Santarpio’s Pizza (santarpiospizza.com) if Joseph Santarpio didn’t turn down an offer to play for the New York Yankees. His father, Francisco,…

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Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana

Best-known for his White Clam Pizza, Frank Pepe is also credited as the originator of New Haven-style pies. Today, pizza from New Haven, Connecticut, is legendary for its misshapen appearance, thin crust and charred edges—but someone had to start it all, and that someone was Frank Pepe, who in 1925 opened up Frank Pepe Pizzeria…

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Frankie’s Pizza

From its grand opening on Valentine’s Day in 1955, Miami’s oldest pizzeria began as a true labor of love. After young Frank Pasquarella and his wife, Noreen, visited Miami on their honeymoon, they fell in love with the city and decided to relocate from Ohio and open a pizzeria. On Valentine’s Day in 1955, Frankie’s…

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Hideaway Pizza

With its fleet of VW Bugs, dancing waiters and hippie attitude, this laidback pizzeria has been rocking Stillwater, Oklahoma, since 1957. Opened in 1957, Hideaway Pizza (hideawaypizza.net) was Oklahoma’s second pizzeria, but it probably would have gone under if Richard Dermer, at age 20, hadn’t taken the helm in 1960. That decade ushered in both…

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Fricano’s Pizza Tavern

Even his mother doubted people would pay good money for this thing called “pizza,” but Gus Fricano persisted—and gained a bona fide cult following. In the early 1950s, tavern owner Cosimo Fricano (known as Gus) decided that his menu needed a boost. After seeing a sign that advertised something called “pizza” near Wrigley Field in…

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Mary’s Pizza Shack

Mary Fazio started this legendary pizza joint in 1959, with $600 and the pots and pans from her own kitchen. In 1959, Mary Fazio wisely took this casual advice from a friend: “You make such good pizza, you should open a restaurant.” The friend’s husband lent Mary one of his vacation cottages and, with help…