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Historic Cairo

Shemwell's Barbecue Stand

    In the 1920's, the Shemwell brothers opened their first BBQ stand in Marion, Illinois. Sometime in the 1930's, the brothers split and Cash Shemwell moved to Cairo and opened the first Shemwell's BBQ stand at 22nd. and Sycamore. In 1946, he bought a building once used as a Chinese Laundry at 11th and Washington Avenue and moved his BBQ business there where it is still in operation. Cash Shemwell retired in 1970 and the business was then ran by his wife, Francis. In 1977, son, Darrell, bought the business and is the present day proprietor along with his wife, Sue. Darrell Shemwell's Bar-B-Que was chosen "Best BBQ on the Old River Road" by money magazine and will be featured in the June 2003 issue of the magazine, Chicago. Shemwell's is open 7 days a week...8am to 8pm. Specialties on the menu are BBQ pork, beef brisket, ham, and turkey and are sliced NOT chopped like other BBQ. Darrell also makes his own delicious BBQ sauce to enhance the hickory flavor of his scrumptious meat.

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