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History


In 1946: Eldridge Litton founded Litton’s Market originally located in the small north Knoxville community of Inskip.  Litton's Market became known for offering a wide range of groceries, produce, hardware, feed, and a full service gas station.  
  
 

 

1955 Inskip: Local delivery and credit accounts were offered to customers.  

  
 
1953 - 1962: Eldridge Litton’s son Edwin grew up helping in the family business. In 1953 he became a partner with his father in Litton’s Market.  A counter deli was added to the market in 1962. The very first “Litton Burger” was sold here for .89 cents. This soon to be famous hamburger would later launch the idea of a new direction for Litton’s Market.
 
  
  
Third Generation: Edwin’s two children, Barry and Kelly, the third generation of the Litton’s Market family, picked up where their father and grandfather left off.
  
1975 Fairview Grocery: Barry and Erik. After graduating from Central High School in 1969, Barry Litton joined the Marines and served one tour of duty to Vietnam in 1971.  Upon his return to Knoxville he managed the family business for the next 7 years.
 
  
  
January 1980: Barry, a butcher by trade, opened a fresh meat market in Knoxville's charming neighborhood of Fountain City in January 1980.
  
1981: In 1981 a customer asked Barry to cook him a hamburger on the market's three-legged electric skillet. The next day, the gentleman returned bringing in 4 more customers. Barry sold his first 8 oz hamburger with bacon on a hoagie bun for $1.99.  This rekindled the “Litton Burger” that had been a success since 1962. Two months later Barry was taking counter orders. 
  
1982: Kelly Litton is passionate for fresh, well-prepared food and the culinary arts. Years ago Kelly wrote to her idol Julia Child telling the Master Chef of her dream to also become a chef.  She received a hand written reply from Child that advised, “Just do it.” Kelly was inspired and in 1982 she received her Certificate of Accomplishment for Rich’s Cooking School with Nathalie Dupree in Atlanta. She attended the prestigious Cordon Bleu Cookery School Limited in London, England in 1983.
  
More About Kelly: Following her studies Kelly began overseeing the kitchen at Litton’s Market. The Litton’s reputation and business were growing.  Barry expanded his once small meat market to a full service restaurant.  In 1983, Litton’s Market and Restaurant was born. Sundays and holidays were always reserved for family time, the Littons continued the tradition of closing the restaurant to honor the commitment to church and family.
  
Perfection: During the 1990’s, Litton’s Market and Restaurant became a North Knoxville landmark known as the home of the “10” (“10” came from the Bo Derek era; a slang statement for perfection).  Litton’s Market and Restaurant has been highlighted in the pages of Southern Living Magazine and is continually voted East Tennessee’s best year after year for their delicious hamburgers and desserts. 
  
The Bakery: Litton’s Market and Restaurant opened their bakery in 1983.  Under the direction of self-taught baker Lynda Jones, the bakery begins creating a wide range of delectable cakes, pies, cookies and brownies at 4:30 in the morning six days a week. Please click the picture for more information about Litton’s Market and Restaurant home-style bakery and the delicious choices from which you can have delivered to your door.
  
The Family: Barry Litton’s three children, Erik, Ashley, and Elizabeth have grown up in the restaurant working their way through school by participating in the family business.
  
The Family Cont'd: Erik Litton represents the 4th generation of the Litton Market family. He attended Johnson and Wales University Charleston in 1992.  Erik continues working in the family business preparing to one day take over management as did his father and his grandfather before him.
  
Jimmy and Rosie: Jimmy Tindell and Rosie Peralta. Several times Litton’s Market and Restaurant was awarded Employer of the Year by Goodwill Industries for their commitment to hiring men and women with disabilities for most of their 25 year history.   Rosie, who washes dishes, has been with Litton’s Market and Restaurant for over 23 years.  Her loyalty and hard work opened doors for many other disabled persons.  Rosie has grown to be a part of the Litton family.  Jimmy Tindal came to the restaurant a few years later and has been with Litton’s for nearly 21 years.  They are a valuable part of the business and family.
  
Loyalty: Over the decades, Knoxvillians have come here to eat, laugh, argue and swap tall tales over lunch. The back room is a private lunch area for the regular customers who dine at Litton’s daily for over 10 years. Their stories run deep and a sign on the wall describes it “The truth according to Litton’s.”
  
Today: In 1983, a generation came of age at Litton’s Market and Restaurant. Loyal customers from all walks of life politicians, lawyers, business leaders, athletes, coaches, and popular entertainers, have made the restaurant their personal dining room.
  
Today Cont'd: Regional and national media coverage such as ESPN and Southern Living have enticed travelers to include Litton’s Market and Restaurant as a destination in their travel plans through East Tennessee.
  
Today Cont'd: Litton’s Market and Restaurant continues to offer the highest quality beef, seafood, and ingredients available. Delicious home-style food partnered with the staff’s genuine southern hospitality and excellent customer service keeps this unique dining experience at the top of food lovers’ lists of favorites.
  
Today Cont'd: Barry, Kelly, and Erik with their combined culinary and business talents maintain the character, dedication and integrity that have always underscored the “Litton’s Market” name for quality and excellence. Name: today4Description: Group: Photo Gallery



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