14,248: Number of McDonald’s locations in America—more than one-and-half times more than there are hospitals (about 10,660)! The first Mickey D’s—a BBQ joint!—was founded by brothers Richard and Maurice McDonald in San Bernadino, California in 1940. Ray Kroc bought the franchise rights and opened his first restaurant 15 years later. Today, McDonald’s Golden Arches are said to be the most recognized symbol in the world. Their best-selling menu item? French fries!