"This is the heart of America."--Dan Quayle
|"The Heart of America"
Huntington is a town of about 17,000 people in northeastern Indiana. Dan Quayle graduated from Huntington High School in 1965. In 1974, after receiving his law degree from Indiana University, Quayle returned here with his bride Marilyn. He served as general manager of the town's newspaper, the Herald-Press, and established the law practice of Quayle & Quayle with Marilyn.
Mike Perkins, the current editor of the Herald-Press, was with the paper when Quayle worked out of an upstairs office. He said that Quayle was not an absentee manager. "He worked full time; the idea was that he would eventually run the newspaper," said Perkins. Indeed, Quayle had spent part of one summer as a pressroom intern. "He understands the news business better than you'd think; his family is a newspaper family," said Perkins.
Photos from Dan Quayle's career grace a wall at Nick's Kitchen on North Jefferson, Huntington's main street. Nick's is famous for its breaded tenderloins ("since 1908"). Jean Anne Drabenstot (standing in the photo above) runs Nick's Kitchen; she recalled that Quayle came in when he worked as a lawyer; he liked a breaded tenderloin, french fries and a milk shake. She pointed to Quayle's preferred seat. "He usually sits on that barstool with his back to the counter and talks to people over there in the booth," she said. Nick's Menu features a Quayle Burger:a half pound of ground beef, grilled onion, lettuce, and tomato, with fries for $4.95.
Huntington is also the location of the Dan Quayle Center and Museum, America's only vice presidential museum. Located near downtown in a former church, the museum features exhibits on Dan Quayle's life and career and on other U.S. vice presidents.
A Huge Day for Him, A Big Day