The original owner of the restaurant known today as "Skeeters" was a man named Mr. E.N. Umberger. The first E.N. Umberger Store opened in 1925, originally located in a different building on Main St. before moving to its current location at 165 E. Main Street in the 1940s.
When Mr. E.N. Umberger first started selling hot dogs, they sold for a nickle. Though the price of a hot dog has changed. the hot dogs themselves have remained the same as the millions that have been sold since 1925.
The name "Skeeters" came from the nickname given to Mr. Umberger's son, E.N. Jr., by his mother. Over the years when Skeeter ran the store, the hot dogs became known as "Skeeter-dogs" and the store became affectionately known as "Skeeter's". According to Skeeter, prior to 1950 (when his dad ran the store) it was a grocery and the hot dogs and lunches were a sideline. With time, the hot dogs drew customers locally and from around the world and is the main seller today.
Generations of families have sat on the spinning stools at the vintage lunch counter, sipped a Baby Coke, and enjoyed the steamed hot dogs served on plain white napkins.
Skeeter's World Famous Hot Dogs made the list of Top 64 hot dogs in America in the Rachel Ray magazine Every Day.
The building that Skeeter's calls home is not only known for its delicious hot dogs - it is also the birthplace of First Lady Edith Bolling Wilson, wife of our 28th President, Woodrow Wilson.
Birthplace of First Lady Mrs. Wilson
The bolling Building dates back to the year 1840 and is a national historic site. The second floor of the building is the birthplace and childhood home of Edith Bolling Wilson, wife of President Woodrow Wilson.
Edith Bolling Wilson, a direct descendant of Pocahontas was the 7th of 11 children born to Judge William H Bolling and Sallie Bolling. She was born in 1872 in her parents' room, a corner room of the building that is located directly above Skeeter's.
One of the most dramatic chapters in presidential history unfolded in October of 1919 when President Wilson suffered a stroke . While the first Lady publicly minimized her involvement in the affairs of the state, her stewardship of government duties earned her such titles as "The First Woman President" and "The Secret President."
The Edith Bolling Wilson Birthplace Museum is located beside Skeeter's and the museum shares the story of Mrs. Wilson's journey, "From Wytheville to the White House." Visit the Edith Bolling Wilson Birthplace Museum and tour the Bolling Home in this building at 145 E. Main Street.