McDonald’s or MacDonald’s? – Fast Food Chain Name

Do you recall the fast food chain as McDonald’s or MacDonald’s?

Golden Arches
(courtesy of Wikimedia)

This is an especially odd alternate memory, since the “golden arches” are such a familiar symbol, most Americans can describe the brand icon, Ronald McDonald, without having to look him up, online, and so on.

History in this reality: The original restaurant was started in 1940 by Dick and “Mac” McDonald. The restaurant was always McDonald’s.

Ray Croc got involved in 1955 and bought the rights to the restaurant (and brand name) six years later.

The name was never MacDonald’s.

For more McDonald’s history, see McDonald’s official website, or the Wikipedia summary.

I was surprised when McDonald’s was mentioned as part of a possible alternate reality/history, because — for many years — I believed the restaurant was MacDonald’s. I ate there about once a month, mostly when my work involved travel and I wanted fast, reliable food.

During an argument with friends, in which I insisted it had to be MacDonald’s because they serve a Big Mac, we went to the restaurant and… they were right.

At the time, it seemed very odd that I’d have made that kind of mistake. I’m a bit of a fanatic about spelling, which is why my early career involved freelance proofreading and editing for MIT.

But, I decided I must have been confused, and didn’t think about it again until this topic came up in a Mandela Effect thread.

To be honest, I’m not certain mine was an alternate memory, not confusion. However, I’ve had 20 years to convince myself that I was “just confused,” so any conclusion I reach now is unreliable.

I’m moving Mac/McDonald’s comments (those with that specific focus) to this article. There may be other, related comments among the Major Memories comments pages, but if they cover a wide range of topics, I’m leaving them where they were posted.

If you remember the fast food chain as MacDonald’s, add your comment to the conversation.