SMALL BUSINESS: Out of the Rough

While driving along a bumpy Texas road one day in 1936, Oklahoma Restaurateur Beverly Osborne and his wife began munching on their home-packed box lunch of fried chicken. When a piece of chicken slipped from her fingers, Mrs. Osborne let out a disgruntled complaint: "This is really eating chicken in the rough." Osborne brushed aside the complaint because he liked the phrase. He thought it was just the proper slogan to persuade Americans to eat fried chicken in public the way they do at home—with their fingers.

After that, bantam-sized (5 ft. 5...