It seems a bit of a fried chicken craze hit Schaumburg Township in the early 1970’s.  Kentucky Fried Chicken had already paved the way in Hoffman Estates in the late 1960s when they opened a brand new restaurant at Higgins and Roselle Roads.   In 1970 Ray and Geri Herringer opened a Chicken Unlimited franchise at 10 N. Roselle Road.  [Daily Herald, April 26, 1971]  This was followed by another Chicken Unlimited franchise that opened in July 1972 on Higgins Road.  In addition, Brown’s Chicken decided to join the competition with their restaurant at 620 S. Roselle Road in September.

In the July 12, 1972 issue of the Daily Herald, an ad invited the public to the grand opening of Chicken Unlimited’s Schaumburg stores at 805 W. Higgins Road and at 10 N. Roselle Road. The Higgins Road store was at the intersection of Higgins and Golf and the Roselle Road store was in this small strip mall that was on the northwest side of the intersection of Schaumburg and Roselle Roads.


When they came to town they brought not only “the world’s best fried chicken” but fish & chips, giant Whamburgers, fried shrimp and hot apple puffs.  Yum!  And, to celebrate the opening of the stores, they offered a “Get Acquainted Coupon” that featured 12 pieces of light, crispy chicken, french fries, cole slaw, hot rolls and honey.  All for the low price of $3.99.  Certainly enough to feed a family of five or six!

The Herringers also offered a package deal for catering purposes.  It was called “Parties Unlimited” and featured a package of chicken, salad, rolls, plates, knives and forks.

Yet another ad from a November 1973 mailer stated that the stores were open 7 days a week, beginning at 11 a.m.  It also featured this coupon for a fast way to save a buck.


Unfortunately, though, Chicken Unlimited did not last long. On March 30, 1976, the franchise filed for bankruptcy and it was around this time that the restaurants shut down in Schaumburg.  The last time there was an appearance in the Daily Herald for one of the Schaumburg locations was in 1976, although ads for the Palatine and Elk Grove locations appeared into the later 70’s.

Maybe one of our readers worked at one of the restaurants or remembers when they closed?  If you can clue us in, it would be most appreciated!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library


  1. Fred Luft Says:

    My memory must be getting worse. I graduated Conant in June 1971. I thought I remembered classmates working at Chicken Unlimited at 10 N. Roselle Rd before graduation from High School. This article shows otherwise.

    • jrozek Says:

      Thank you for alerting me to this Fred! I was able to find one article from 1971 that mentioned the Chicken Unlimited at Roselle and Schaumburg Road opening “last year.” I’ve updated the blog posting to reflect that. This helps!

      Jane Rozek
      Local History Librarian
      Schaumburg Township District Library

  2. Dan Says:

    I didn’t know there was ever a Brown’s in Weatherway Plaza…. I had thought they opened around 1979 at 950 S Roselle (current Enterprise rent a car building).

    Jane, my dad also recalls there being a Chicken Unlimited on Irving Park Road west of Barrington across from Burger King. The building is now CarX. Not sure if you found anything to confirm that. I think there was also another Brown’s on Irving Park west of that Burger King.

    On the topic of fried chicken in Schaumburg Township, we can’t forget Church’s Chicken at the northeast corner of Golf/Roselle. I think they opened around 1978 and closed in ’98. I believe the guy who franchised it in the late 80s-early 90s now is a partner at the Culver’s on Wise. I seem to recall back in the 80s the building being of red brick and having an orange and green roof, though in later years it was painted a beige. Would love to see some pictures of the Church’s….

    • jrozek Says:

      There was an ad from September 15, 1972, that said “Browns’ Fried Chicken Comes to Schaumburg” and they listed 620 S. Roselle Road as the address. I suspect in a global address change at some point, the address for 1972 could have later changed to 950 S. Roselle. Does this sound possible?

      I did see that Hanover Park location for the Chicken Unlimited on Irving Park Road. There was also one on Devon in Elk Grove Village. Thank you for mentioning it and the Brown’s in Hanover Park too.

      You were darned close with the date on Church’s Chicken. I found an ad from the Daily Herald from July 25, 1979 on Church’s and it said, “Church’s Fried Chicken has arrived and that’s great news for chicken lovers…Like our brand new store in Schaumburg.” I miss that store and their location on north-bound Roselle Road. I mainly remember the beige look, which must have happened when they painted the building. I especially liked their spicy chicken nuggets!

      Thank you for these wonderful details!

      Jane Rozek
      Local History Librarian
      Schaumburg Township District Library

  3. BetsyArmistead Says:

    In the March, 1967 photo of the northwest corner of Schaumburg and Roselle Rds., I notice the Marathon station is offering Plaid Stamps. That’s a blast from the past (along with Green Stamps). I wonder how many businesses in town offered trading stamps as a premium with purchase back in those days.

  4. Fred Luft Says:

    If my memory serves me right, The National Food Store that was in the SW corner of Golf and Roselle Rds where Petland sits now, had S&H green stamps in the 1960’s. I remember my mom saving them. You would put the stamps in a small book and turn them in when you had enough books to get what you wanted.

    Also the Hoffman Estates Volunteer Fire Dept. in early 1960’s asked the people of Hoffman Estates to save S&H green stamps so they could get an ambulance. They were able to get a Cadillac Ambulance for the town.

  5. randy schallau Says:

    On the Chicken Unlimited in Hanover Park and the Browns across
    the street the neighboring business when I worked at both of
    the franchises was a Purple Martin gas station it opened in 1970
    and gave stamps and a six pack of Coke with a ten gallon fill-up
    of 34 cent gasoline.

  6. john briandi Says:

    my father Anthony briandi opened some with Lou Rifkin in the late 60. in chicago

  7. Shenda Says:

    It sure was good chicken, we had one in Roseland on 111 th Michigan, Chicago!

  8. Frank Says:

    I worked at the Chicken Unlimited on the south side of Chicago on 35th between Halsted and Morgan while I was in High School. That restaurant closed in 1978

  9. Ron Says:

    There was also a chicken unlimited I’m Milwaukee Avenue in Niles close to Milwaukee and Dempster

    • Ron Says:

      There was also a chicken unlimited on Milwaukee Avenue in Niles at Milwaukee and dempster.. I am not disputing about the two Schaumburg locations maybe it was a franchise in Niles I’m just saying it was there

  10. John Siedlinski Says:

    There was a Chicken Unlimited in Lisle just east of 53 on Maple. It was owned and managed by an Asian couple and featured huge fried breasts than were dunked into a crock pot of BBQ sauce if you desired. It was awesome chicken, freshly made, until the late 80’s. Gone, but not forgotten!

  11. Fred Rohlfing Says:

    I worked at the Chicken Unlimited on Devon while in High School and so did my sister. I started as delivery driver in 1975 under the original owner and then it was purchased in August 1975 by Tony Graczyk. I became the part-time night manager in 1975. Tony operated it for years even after Chicken Unlimited folded sometime before 1980, he converted it to a Browns. At the time I worked there there was the Schaumburg location, Wheaton, Niles and one at Golf rd and Arlington Heights. We would sometime trade supplies with the Wheaton location. Chicken unlimited would sometimes use a 9 piece cut which would yield 3 breasts. The “upper breast” had almost all the meat and that may be the giant breast that another poster refers to. I still have various stickers and promotional items. In 1976, CU started an all you can eat Tuesday dinner which was popular (dine in). In addition to chicken, we had burgers, tacos, fried shrimp and fish. From memory, I believe that at the peak there were about 115 CU’s. Mainly in Illinois and Florida.

  12. Henrietta patty Says:

    I thought someone by the name of Felix Traskaski owned this restaurant at one time.

  13. Mark Larson Says:

    I worked at the one in Barrington Illinois on Route 14 across from McDonald’s. It was around 1972 got paid $1.25 an hour got a raise three months later to $1.40 an hour

    • jrozek Says:


      Is this the location that is now Bronco Burrito? And, if so, did that building originally open as a Chicken Unlimited franchise?

      Just curious…

      Jane Rozek
      Local History Librarian
      Schaumburg Township District Library

  14. winifred Says:

    looking for the recipe for chicken unlimited

  15. Alberto Merced Says:

    Chicken unlimited was the best tastes fried chicken back then
    I know l used to worked for one of there franchised when l was a teenager in Chicago Illinois

  16. J.P. Gleason Says:

    the person who mentioned a ( 9 ) piece chicken which seemed to have a 3rd breast, this part of the chicken was known as the pullet breast, use to get them years ago at another gone but not forgotten Maryland Fried Chicken in Romeoville, IL

  17. Daryel Anderson Says:

    Love the article.. We had the pleasure to eat the best chicken in the world too. I grew up in Florida. Fort
    Lauderdale Broward County. A Ckicken Unlimited Restaurant located on Sunrise Blvd. and 31st. Ave. That would be about a 1000 feet east of the famous Swap Shop. Florida’s second highest tourist attraction. Any body that has ever been to south Florida knows what talking about.
    It was a sad day to find out as a child the restaurant that served the brownish red chick was going away.
    Chicken Unlimited had the best tasting chicken in the world.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: