|Dill’s Esso Station on the Asheville Highway, 1965. The service bays are the home of White Squirrel Car Wash today.|
first motorized vehicles arrived in Transylvania County in the early 1900s
drivers purchased gas from businesses, such as general stores or hardware stores
that had storage tanks. The first
mention of a filling station in local newspapers was May 27, 1921 when it was
reported that Robert Whitmire of Greenville would build a station “on the site
of the old laundry building near Smith’s garage.” In March 1922 J.B. Bromfield began
construction of a Texaco station on Caldwell St. This would later be the home of McCrary Auto
in the 1930s.
|Inside Patton’s Service Station on the southwest corner of
Broad and Morgan streets, 1948.
next month several others announced similar ventures. A Standard filling station was built on
W. Main St. by L.B. Houston and J.A. Miller.
The office was constructed of gray granite. Carl McCrary opened his first tire and battery
shop there in 1928. The “old rock
station” stood for over 45 years until it was torn down to make room for the
new City Hall and Fire Department in the late 1960s.
at these full-service stations would pump the gas for customers, clean the windows,
and often check the oil and tire pressure.
He collected the payment as well so the customer never left their
|The Atlantic Station on the Hendersonville Highway just west of the Dollar General.|
filling stations typically had a garage or repair shop also. They offered a wide range of services,
including battery replacement, checking and replacing belts and hoses, brake
work, lubrication, tune-ups, tires, wheel balancing, and even washing and
waxing of vehicles. Many also offered
road service for motorists who broke down on the road or at home.
|Taylor’s Esso Station was located next door to the Brevard Post Office in 1961.
Eldridge’s Marathon station and service center is located there today.
first self-service filling or gas station in the United States opened in 1947
prior to 1970 most stations remained full-service.
In 1969 there were approximately 30 full-service stations in
Transylvania County. Today it is
difficult to find a filling station in the U.S. that offers full-service and includes a
and information for this column are provided by the Rowell Bosse North Carolina
Room, Transylvania County Library. Visit
the NC Room during regular library hours (Monday-Friday) to learn more about
our history and see additional photographs.
For more information, comments or suggestions contact Marcy at [email protected] or 828-884-1820.