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Prior to 1905, automobile drivers pulled up to any hardware or general store or even blacksmith shop to purchase gasoline from a barrel. Drivers generally carried a bucket in their autos for this purpose.  It was hardly safe or convenient.

1910 Flint MI Central Oil & Gas
Central Oil & Gas
Flint, MI 1910
 
In 1905, about 25,000 cars were manufactured in the United States, and Sylvanus F. Bowser perfected a pump that would take gas out of a barrel and fill a car's tank. The world's first "filling stations" started opening that same year in St. Louis, Missouri, the second gas station was constructed in 1907 by Standard Oil of California (which is now known as Chevron) in Seattle Washington at what is now Pier 32.  Reighard's gas station in Altoona, Pennsylvania claims that it dates from 1909 and is the oldest existing gas station in the United States.
1918 Lakewood, Ohio Filling Station
1918 Lakewood, OH
Filling Station
.
Those early filling stations were not the drive-in type that we've known all of our lives, instead the filling station owner would place a pump out front of their establishment on the sidewalk.  The cars would just stop right in the midst of traffic and fill up.  This problem grew much worse by 1910, when there were 500,000 cars looking for gas and blocking traffic while doing it.

This is when the drive-in stations began to appear with their pumps sometimes covered by canvas awnings and located on a lot off the main street next to a "store".  These stores began selling auto supplies and food - just like what we see today.

Gasoline Advertising
By the 1930s gas stations had undergone a complete make-over.  Signs such as the iconic shell of Shell Oil Company and slogans such as "You can trust your car to the man who wears the star" for Texaco had become commonplace.  

Suddenly, gas was cheap and plentiful and this forced companies to compete for their customers which in turn brought about a new term for these gas stations -- "service stations".  And service they did, right down to the attendants in matching spiffy uniforms who raced out to the customer's car, pumped the gas, cleaned the windshield, checked the oil and water, tested the air in the tires and politely asked the customer if there was anything else they needed.(!)

Hancock Oil circa 1930's
 
.
Now stations were finding it tough to keep existing customers and attract new ones leading owners to offer more and more services in order to stay competitive. How did a new company get motorist to buy its gas rather than a the fellow's down the street?  Oil changes; tire repairs, changes or rotations; mechanic services; car washes and waxes were a few of the services station owners began offering and all at affordable prices.
.
Restroom sign outside Baltimore, MD Gas Station
.
Services for the automobile were not the only enticement used by station owners.  S & H Green Stamps were offered by most major Oil Companies and almost all stations boasted "Clean and Sanitary Rest Rooms".  Many many other giveaways were offered, from maps to toy cars and trucks as well as dishes and glassware which wasn't plastered with the name of the company either.

Just think about this for a moment...gas stations pumped your gas, checked the oil and water and tire pressure, cleaned the windshield and gave you a gift, all for the privileged of having you for a customer.  

This is one of those times when change is not so good, eh?

You might enjoy the following links loaded with vintage photos:

Old Baltimore gas stations

National Refiing Photo Album - Service Stations

Gas Station Historic Photo Archive

Filling Stations in vintage photographs  Click on the slideshow for this one -- very very good photos

Vintage Service Station Photos

Originally posted to MOT - Morning Open Thread on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 03:30 AM PDT.

Also republished by J Town and Community Spotlight.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Good Sunday Morning, MOTliteers (48+ / 0-)

    Photobucket

    Have a wonderful day, everybuddy ;~D

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Sat Sep 22, 2012 at 02:35:17 PM PDT

  •  Skow gas station. (15+ / 0-)

    Grandpa Skow ran the Standard Oil in Moorhead, Iowa from 1931 to around 1970. He sold it off to concentrate on his Allis-Chalmers dealership.

    It's change ownership umpteen times since then and has been remodeled twice over into just another convenience store.

    "If this Studebaker had anymore Atomic Space-Age Style, you'd have to be an astronaut with a geiger counter!"

    by Stude Dude on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 03:36:39 AM PDT

  •  Morning JaxDem and all... (9+ / 0-)

    Fun read, :)

    "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

    by smiley7 on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 03:54:13 AM PDT

  •  Great story, JaxDem! (10+ / 0-)

    I remember the full service gas station near the neighborhood I grew up in. Everyone knew the people who worked there, they repaired people's cars and pumped gas.

    Just think about this for a moment...gas stations pumped your gas, checked the oil and water and tire pressure, cleaned the windshield and gave you a gift, all for the privileged of having you for a customer.  
    If the prices had come down to make up for the loss of these services, it would certainly be more palatable. I remember 19 cent gas ... yikes! Of course, 19 cent gas was pumped out of the now depleted reservoirs. Too bad we didn't charge an extra $3 per gallon back then and "pumped" that into developing clean renewable energy sources.

    ~

    The Wisconsin Badgers embarrassed themselves again yesterday. We let another FCS school stay in the game until the very end. We were supposed to beat them by 17 points and we sweated it out until the final 2 minutes.

    Our coach Bret Bielema is from the defensive side of the ball and his offensive coordinator, who led to the programs success over his early tenure, was a guy who worked for Barry Alvarez and stayed on when Bielema was named coach. Now he is gone and the guy he picked to take his place is not up to the task. Boring uninspired play calling. And Bielema is knee-jerking his way through the pre-conference schedule. He fired his offensive line coach after two games, last week he switched quarterbacks at half time, yesterday he yanked his kicker only to have the backup kicker shank a field goal try. You can't coach by fear and that is what he is doing. What he needs to do is kick some butt on the defensive side because huge plays given up by our secondary are killing us. His hand picked defensive coordinator (new last year) sucks.

    So there! We are going to get crushed when the Big Ten season starts next week. The only thing saving us is that in our division, a losing record may get us to the BigTen Championship game because Ohio State and Penn State are under sanctions.

    Packers play Seattle tomorrow night. No football for me today!

    Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

    by JanF on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 03:58:59 AM PDT

    •  Good Morning, Jan! (9+ / 0-)

      It is mind boggling to think of the price of gas back when.  

      In fact, I thought about including the rise in gas prices over the years, but that could (and should) be a diary on its own.  You might want to take a look at this article:  New York History: History and Rising Gas Prices

      Raising the price of gas posed a concern in the 1930s, but not to worry. State Tax Commissioner Thomas Lynch said that there was “no assurance that the public would pay two cents more for gas.” Since it was taxed at the source (the distributors), Lynch said the oil companies would probably just absorb the cost. (A fine example of naiveté on its grandest scale.)

      As for that new money in the treasury? In no time at all, politicians were appropriating gas-tax funds for a variety of non-road-related uses. Once the feeding frenzy began, it was all over. Requests to raise the gas tax soon became routine. After all, it was a state income bonanza.

      Even a county as small as Clinton paid $293,000 in 1932, of which only $96,000 came back for highway use. By 1934, the gas tax itself amounted to 24 percent of the price. In 1934, the state took in $85 million from the gas tax, $50 million of which was diverted for non-highway use. (That very same issue arose recently with the loss of the Lake Champlain Bridge.)

      It is a very interesting read.  We so seldom "remember" how much we tax our gasoline when we complain about the price of gas.

      This piece has some mighty fine graphs:  Historical Gas Prices, 1919 - 2004

      Sorry about your Badgers.  Sounds like the coach needs to go.  Coaching by fear....hummm.   Why does that sound so familiar....Oh, Governing by fear!

      Have a great day and clear the schedule for tomorrow night's game!

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:18:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Speaking of disappointments. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JanF, JaxDem

      I hope no one watched BSU-BYU game last Thursday night on ESPN. Our only touchdown was from a huge D liner, who intercepted and rumbled in for a TD. I can't believe we actually one, by one point. Our defense was phenomenal, with five interceptions, but our offense was dismal. Quite a change from the past decade, and we all wished Kellen Moore had one more year as QB. Ah, well, I guess we can call if a rebuilding time (if we could get someone who could kick a field goal, and a new offensive coordinator, who called for some stupid plays). Coach Pete said, after the game, "I guess we need to find some simpler plays." Ouch

      I think, therefore I am. I think.

      by mcmom on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:09:37 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We had such a huge drop off at quarterback (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, drmah

        Russell Wilson, our quarterback last year, is the starting qb for Seattle as a rookie.

        It is a shock to our system.

        Words have meaning. Our words will reflect what is in our souls.

        by JanF on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:26:15 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Good Morning (10+ / 0-)

    My first pay check was from working @ Larry's Standard Oil.
    Nice topic JD.

    I feel almost human again.
    Much better than 24 hours ago.

    Happy Sunday to all.

  •  Here in Mexico we still have it all (14+ / 0-)

    self service hasn't caught on.
    I remember when, in the states, they started telling you to put out your cigarettes while you pumped gas. Before that it was not strange to see someone with a butt hanging out of his mouth while filling his tank. At 22 cents a gallon and 25 cents a pack.

    "HAPPINESS IS A CHOICE" , bumpersticker on a burning Subaru

    by tRueffert on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:52:46 AM PDT

  •  When I was an undergraduate in the early 1970s ... (9+ / 0-)

    ... I recall gas @ 25 cents to 35 cents a gallon. It was common to drive in to the local gas station for "a dollar's worth" of gasoline. It seems bizarre to think about the "energy shortages" of the late 1970s when the public was so outraged at President Carter because gas went from about 60 cents a gallon to 85 cents or so. There were a few stations in the Denver area (where I lived at the time) that charged $1 to $1.25 a gallon and were subjected to boycotts and accusations of price gouging. Full service started disappearing about that time, too, and attendants stopped wearing the uniforms and only pumped gas or maybe cleaned windshields. Here in Nashville, there are a few gas stations that maintain a dedicated full service pump along with the self-service pumps, to cater to old-fashioned southern belles of a certain age and people who are disabled. Thanks for the fine diary. Have a great Sunday MOTleys everywhere!

    Ah, my friends from the prison, they ask unto me, "how good, how good does it feel to be free? " And I answer them most mysteriously, "are birds free from the chains of the skyway? " (Bob Dylan)

    by JKTownsend on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:16:44 AM PDT

    •  Good Morning,JK (6+ / 0-)

      I've enjoyed reading your recollections.  

      It was common to drive in to the local gas station for "a dollar's worth" of gasoline
      That produced an "Oh, yeah" moment for me.  Can't even get enough to fill a lawnmower with $1.00 these days.

      Hope you and the girls have a wonderful day.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:29:05 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Oregon-where you NEVER have to fill your own tank (9+ / 0-)

    And service stations in Oregon still give service. Do you know its illegal to fill your own tank in Oregon? Thats right, the only state in the union where you have to wait for someone to fill your tank----you can't do it yourself.

    Why this law is I dunno,, maybe its the Full Employment For Gas Station Atenndants Law.  When its rainy or snowy its a good thing. When youre waiting like for days for some mimimum wage yobbo to recognize you and come over and start filling your tank it can be aggravating. I have no idea why they do this.

    I used to work in gas stations when I was a kid and after the Army. I worked at an all nighter in downtown West Oajland and was robbed twice at gunpoint---for minimum wage. This was  not like behind a bulletproof glass robbery like today, this was face to face and not at all friendly.  I started carrying a gun myself, thinking it was gonna be easier to get out of jail than get out of a graveyard. Shades of Vietnam, which I had just left. I was just too open a target

    Learned a lot about fixing cars working gas stations but since than cars have gotten all computerfied and I haven't kept up.

    I miss the old gas stations and there used to be a lot more of them.

    Happy just to be alive

    by exlrrp on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:19:55 AM PDT

    •  Mornin, ex. (4+ / 0-)

      Glad to see you made the trip to CA just fine.  

      Yes, there are good and bad sides to everything.  It would drive me crazy waiting on someone to "recognize" that I'm sitting there in my car beside the pump waiting...still waiting...  I would hate that.  Other side of the coin is that you don't have to get out of the car in the heat, cold, wind or rain.

      Enjoy your brother's birthday party!

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:32:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  You can't pump it yourself in JOISEY, either. I (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem, drmah

      figure it's because too many people pumped their own gas and got back on the Gawden State PAWKway, btu Oregon? Probably because the lege was afraid that too much gas vapor would hurt snail darters or something (tee hee).

      I remember two things about the we-pump-it-for-you era:
      A commercial where a man and his g.f. are at the pump and he's afraid he'll have to pay extra for the attendant pumping the gas, checking his oil, etc. (boy, was THAT a while ago). The man says he spent his last free dime on the gas pedal, which we see is decorated with a metal cutout of a human foot.

      The other was when we stopped at a Martin station in some part of Chicago we rarely visited. "First to serve you in tuxedos!" their sign blared. The attendant wore some kind of dark jacket and pants, a white shirt, and bowtie. Didn't all gas station attendants wear that sort of outfit way back when?

    •  The reason givenis that it's too dangerous (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem

      for the eldery, infirm disabled or idiotic to do it themselves. I don't drive, but if the law had changed recently in NJ, I think I would have heard or noticed in passing.

      Don't let millionaires steal Social Security.
      I said, "Don't let millionaires steal Social Security!"

      by Leo in NJ on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 08:49:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My Town Is Full-Serve Too (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem

        The town where I live—Huntington, New York—also does not allow self-serve stations. I can count on one hand the amount of times I've had to pump my own gas during my lifetime.

        My younger sister lives in New Jersey, and as of May 2012 it was still full-serve there too.

        This diary hits home for me because my dad ran a Texaco station during the 1970s and 80s. He and my brothers then ran a repair shop until 1996. My brother Jimmy, who was the mechanic in the family, passed away that year and my dad didn't have the heart to run it anymore. To this day, visiting a repair shop brings back many memories for me.

  •  Memories of ARCO (10+ / 0-)

    One of my summer jobs was as an attendant at the third ARCO station between the bottom of the Grapevine and Bakersfield, CA.

    I only worked there for a couple of months in 1968 but I remember so much of it and so much of the circumstances surrounding it that sometimes it scares me, lol. I roomed with a family in Bakersfield. The man of the house was a retired heavy equipment operator with no hearing left who would occasionally walk to the nearest Alpha Beta, buy a bottle of ripple and drink it on the way home. Which in summer would also involve him passing out in the heat and a subsequent $25 (!) ambulance ride. Which was why his wife, a kind of hard-edged Edith Bunker, would go to almost any lengths to try to keep him from being sold alcohol at nearby stores. She was still working and $25 went a long way in those days. For example, the gas we sold at the ARCO station was 39 cents a gallon.

    The rest of the staff at the station included the owner, who had been working in offshore drilling but through one circumstance or another had been led to try making a living with the third ARCO station.... .

    Then there was our resident mechanic and Bircher with bad teeth, fading automotive skills (we once watched him try to take the left side lug nuts of a Chrysler product with an air wrench while forgetting that they were left-hand threaded in those days), and who had personally donated a scoped .303 hunting rifle for the lube room and an M1911 (.45 automatic by its real name) for the men's room paper towel dispenser. We were supposed to come out blazing away at whatever crook had tied us up and deposited us in either of those locations.

    There was also a pretty convincing replica (or prototype, actually given the timeframe) of the Fonz working there. He was a fellow attendant, but like the TV character kind of kept things running and supplied wisdom and muscle as required. I learned quite a lot from him.

    There were a few local repeat customers, mostly from the surrounding farms. I remember one in particular who reminded me of Mr. Haney from Green Acres primarily from his accent.

    I got $1.75 for my time at that place. If one were to maintain the ratio of pay to gas price in the present day, gas station attendants would get about $17 an hour. Which might go some way towards explaining the lack of gas station attendants, I would think.

    Moderation in most things.

    by billmosby on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:31:19 AM PDT

    •  Such great recollections, bill. (4+ / 0-)

      What a cast of characters you were around in those days!  

      The rifle for the lube room and automatic for the bathroom (!)  were there that many robberies that you needed those guns?  

      I guess so, especially if the station was located in a rural area instead of smack in the middle of a busy town.

      Isn't it funny that we can recall so clearly some of our life experiences and almost nothing of others?  Wonder what that says about us.

      Have a great day and thanks for the entertaining story ;-)

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:40:53 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  They worked hard for that 23 cent gas... (7+ / 0-)

    Our ears hear symphonies through wireless headsets, but our knuckles still drag the ground.

    by ZedMont on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:39:07 AM PDT

  •  By the way, thanks for "Bowser". (6+ / 0-)

    As an aviation enthusiast I noticed early on that the Brits called their fuel trucks "Bowsers". Now I think I know why. This blog has a number of good pictures of such.

    Moderation in most things.

    by billmosby on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:43:57 AM PDT

  •  Thank you for the diary! You read my mind. (8+ / 0-)

    I've just taken up photographing vintage gas stations as a hobby and am surprised at the treasures I'm finding in my part of Alabama.  Everything from canopied, castle-like 1920s buildings originally built as Sinclair stations, to the 1940s-1950s "icebox" designs on the Texacos, Shells and Essos, to an old Phillips 66 "batwing" station representing the space-age '60s.  

    The architecture on many of these can be amazing, and I always smile when someone restores or repurposes one--from the law firm that occupies an old Pure Oil cottage in Rome, Georgia, to a Nationwide Insurance office in Gadsden, Alabama that playfully embraces the history of the former Texaco where they're located.

    At the same time, even the run-down, plain ones tell a story--about the old route through town before interstates, or the old neighborhood station.  I am surprised at the nice little historical nuggets I find in even the most run-down stations, like the one just outside Anniston, Alabama that happens to have the old Cities Service logo ghosting on the side of the building.  (Cities Service was the original name of Citgo before 1965.)

    ...being a bully was normal, average, status quo behavior for him. And no one remembers an average day.--kos

    by dwayne on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 06:49:24 AM PDT

    •  A whole diary could be devoted to the (5+ / 0-)

      structures themselves.  I stumbled across so many of those too in my research, but in the interest of keeping it short and sweet, I couldn't allow myself to get sidetracked.  There are many other side stories to pursue on this topic too.

      I love your hobby!  It sounds wonderful.  And you really got to me with this:

      ...the old Cities Service logo ghosting on the side of the building.  
      That's the photography hobby I'd like to pursue -- Ghost signs.  

      I did this piece back in February:

      Ghost Signs and Wall Dogs

      Thank you so much for sharing your hobby with us.  If you ever diary on this and share your photos, please give me a head's up.  I'd love to see that.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 07:03:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Hi JaxDem and MOT's! (7+ / 0-)

    My Dad worked in a true filling station in Scotland, Indiana when he was young. I think it was a DX, which I think was later absorbed by Sunoco.

    Brush with greatness, Scotland was down the road from Dana, Indiana, boyhood home of Ernie Pyle, the WWII correspondent. Grandpa was the milk man in Dana until his untimely death from a horse kick. Funny how the memories work.

    Thanks!


    - The most perfect political community is one in which the middle class is in control, and outnumbers both of the other classes.
    - Aristotle


    by rudyblues on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 07:03:21 AM PDT

    •  Mornin', rudy. Good to see you again. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      rudyblues, worldlotus

      Seems a good many males of a certain age worked in gas stations.  

      Nice memories, rudy, thank you for sharing them.  I really enjoy reading about people's trips down memory lane.

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 07:08:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Anyone remember the highway (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem, drmah

      Burma Shave signs? They were a hoot. Example. "She drove her chariot at 90 per, they picked up what had been her." Then the last sign said "Burma Shave."

      I think, therefore I am. I think.

      by mcmom on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:23:59 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Some of my favorite memories when (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        drmah, mcmom

        we went on summer vacation trips were the Burma Shave signs.  We all looked for them and recited them together.  Didn't take much to entertain us back then, did it?

        In School Zones
        Take it slow
        Let the little
        Shavers Grow
        Burma Shave

        Thanks for the memories, mcmom ;-)

        As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

        by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:48:23 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Pagoda shaped gas stations (6+ / 0-)

    were the trademark of Wadham's Oil and Grease, and there were still operating Wadham's Pagodas (selling Mobil) when I was a kid in SE WI.

    (Pictures at the link)

    In Soviet Russia, you rob bank. In America, bank robs you.

    by badger on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 08:07:26 AM PDT

  •  My dad's Socony Mobil station had (4+ / 0-)

    a flying red horse logo. We gave out Green Stamps, sold gas for 32 cents a gallon when I was young, fixed tires, washed cars (and started them when it was 20 below) and changed a lot of oil.

    I dreamed I saw Joe Hill last night, alive as you and me.

    by plankbob on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 09:43:47 AM PDT

  •  My then boyfriend, eventual ex-husband (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, KibbutzAmiad, drmah, JKTownsend

    worked at a Sinclair station as an after-school job in the very early 1970s.  During his time there, it changed to Arco.  The station had 2 bays where oil changes and repair jobs were done.  I used to come down there and keep him company sometimes.  If friends of mine drove in, I'd clean their windshields while he did the fill-up and oil-checking stuff.

    Fox News is to the truth as a flaming bag of dog shit is to a packed lunch. --MinistryOfTruth

    by snazzzybird on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 09:54:33 AM PDT

  •  I have memories (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, worldlotus, JKTownsend

    of Citgo stations in the Chicago area, that, for reasons that are unclear to me, used to give away large plastic bees that had adhesive stickers on the back.  They were very cute, and I was desperate to have one.  My parents finally obliged.

    I also remember Sinclair stations, which had as their logo a green brontosaurus.  At one point, Sinclair put up a display of a bunch of "life sized" cement dinosaurs kids could climb on.  I found it really entrancing.  They also gave away small bars of soap which, when you got to the center, had a tiny rubber brontosaurus.  Those gas stations reminded me of the one from the Andy Griffith show.  They were far more than gas stations, they were where you'd encounter your neighbors, ask questions about your car, buy maps, all kinds of things.

    Justice For Will Will spent his brief, courageous life fighting for the rights we all take for granted. Please share his story to support the fight!

    by KibbutzAmiad on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 09:57:40 AM PDT

  •  the citgo bee (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, worldlotus, JKTownsend

    Justice For Will Will spent his brief, courageous life fighting for the rights we all take for granted. Please share his story to support the fight!

    by KibbutzAmiad on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 10:05:39 AM PDT

  •  My Grandmother ran a Standard Station in Port (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, worldlotus, drmah, JKTownsend, mcmom

    Orford, Oregon that pumped the second most gas of any station on the west coast in some summers of the late forties and early fifties.

    These days, I avoid having to buy gas in Oregon because they don't allow self-serve by law.  Cars don't require much maintenance any more, so it probably would be tough to make a profit operating as a full-service station.

    (An excellent place to fuel up in the Pendleton, Oregon area is the Arrowhead Travel Plaza off I-84 exit 216. It's on the Umatilla Indian Reservation, so you can pump yourself.  Plus, great window washing supplies at the pump, which really helps with the mass of dead bugs.)

    "Slavery is the legal fiction that a person is property. Corporate personhood is the legal fiction that property is a person." David Korten, When Corporations Rule the World

    by Delta Overdue on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 10:06:15 AM PDT

    •  There couldn't have been many women (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Delta Overdue, worldlotus, drmah

      running service stations during that time -- or today for that matter.  I am willing to bet you could tell many a fascinating tale about your grandmother.  Good for her ;-)

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 10:11:26 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My mother-in-law ran the station while my father- (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, JKTownsend

        in-law made farm deliveries of gasoline and horse feed from the station. She paid the bills, kept the books, swept the floors, cleaned the windows and waited on customers while he was out "working."  I'll bet there are a huge number of women who fit into this category, whose husbands would claim their wife never worked outside the home.

    •  And you can pop over into the Indian Casino (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem

      and lose a few!

      I think, therefore I am. I think.

      by mcmom on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:25:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  and the (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, Churchill, worldlotus, JKTownsend

    Sinclair Dinopark:

    Justice For Will Will spent his brief, courageous life fighting for the rights we all take for granted. Please share his story to support the fight!

    by KibbutzAmiad on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 10:16:34 AM PDT

  •  I have a complete set (8+ / 0-)

    of barware from Clark Oil company in the 1960's in the Chicago area.  I have stemmed pilsners, non stemmed pilsners, highball  glasses, cordial glasses, wine glasses, and shot glasses.  Some of the shot glasses have been lost along the way, but the rest are intact.  They are pretty nice heavy glass with a silver band around the rim and various waterfowl etched onto the side in black paint -- pheasants, quail, etc.  I never use them, but I remember how avidly my Dad collected them and how we would drive out of our way to go to the Clark station whenever there were new editions.

    The GOP -- Hating Women, Gays and People of Color since 1854

    by Former Chicagoan Now Angeleno on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 11:02:01 AM PDT

  •  thanks for this diary because (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, worldlotus, JKTownsend, mcmom

    my aunt used to give me s&h green stamps when i was a kid, enough to fill a book to buy a pair of steel roller skates. how was she able to get so many stamps (my mom did a&p herself)? buying gasoline! i had no idea you could get them that way until today.

    •  You are welcome! Green Stamps (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      worldlotus, JKTownsend, mcmom

      were given at grocery stores too and even a few department stores.  I'd guess the majority came from gas stations and grocery stores.

      Glad you got those cool skates ;-)

      As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

      by JaxDem on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 11:37:40 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Gold Strike stamps were the norm (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem, drmah

        in Idaho. My late MIL and I used to take turns getting stuff with them. I got a high chair and a kitchen step stool, I recall.

        I think, therefore I am. I think.

        by mcmom on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:27:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Speaking of groceries stores (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        JaxDem

        I was in Maceys yesterday and had an actual bagger. It made me remember when they bagged the groceries and helped you out to your car to load them. That is when I remembered the full service gas stations. And the cool glasses and of course, Green Stamps.
        Great timing on the gas stations.
        Fun diary too, to see all the memories.
        The nice things we had before profits got in the way.
        Like customer service.

        If the Fetus you Saved was GAY, would you still fight for it's RIGHT'S?

        by snoopydawg on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 09:49:42 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  They were a reward for paying cash. (0+ / 0-)

        Perhaps merchants should consider a similar program these days.

        "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

        by Yamaneko2 on Mon Sep 24, 2012 at 07:04:29 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I used Green Stamps for my son's crib and playpen. (5+ / 0-)

      Later they, and Blue Chip Stamps, were used for items the whole family wanted but we didn't feel were important enough to build into the family budget. As the kids got older they took the responsibility of keeping track of the stamps and pasting them into the books. Pouring over the catalog was great fun. Spending stamps for things we wanted felt much like spending a gift card today.

  •  In most of the world, full-service stations (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, worldlotus, JKTownsend, mcmom

    are still the rule.  Here in Oman -- and throughout the Gulf -- there are no self-service stations at all.  Station attendants fill you up, check oil, tire pressure, and water levels (if you ask) as well as clean your windshield, side, and rear window.  They also take your money at the pump and will sell you top-up cellphone cards and a newspaper as well.  As for the gas price, it's roughly US$1.20 a gallon for super and has held stable for at least the past ten years now.  It's quite a lot cheaper elsewhere--in Saudi Arabia, for example.

    -7.13 / -6.97 "The people never give up their liberties but under some delusion." -- Edmund Burke

    by GulfExpat on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 11:24:44 AM PDT

  •  Hubby's father ran filling staion/feed store/candy (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, JKTownsend, mcmom

    store in small town, Indiana. Candy counter was the big attraction with a giant case filled with penny candy, located across from the school.  Kids would spend their lunch recess time trying to decide how to spend their three pennies.  Local small farmers could gas up their truck, load it down with chicken feed, let the "little woman" spend an hour picking out the feed sack fabric for their next sewing fabric and entertain the kids by letting them choose a nickel's worth of penny candy. What a way to spend Saturday morning in town!

  •  I seem to recall that many of the WW11ers (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, raster44, drmah

    started their careers opening gas stations after the war. Anyway, I can, at the old age of 73, recall that maps were free, you always got your windshields washed (clear into the 60's in Idaho), and the attendant would ask if he (never she) should check your oil. Most of the service stations I recall as a kid in Portland, Or, had big metal cooling tanks (filled with cold water), that had pop in them. You opened the lid, put your money (a dime for a long time) in the slot, and a metal doohickey allowed you to pull a cold, very wet bottle loose. The opener was on the front of the tank. I seem to remember they were always red. I always had a Coke, I think the bottles held 8 oz. Most of the stations I remember did not have snacks, or any edibles of any kind, unlike the mini-marts most are today. In Oregon, it is still illegal to pump your own gas, but you do have to wash your own windshields. I also remember "gas wars," where guys would put big barrels in the back of their PUs and fill 'em up. Little did we know what "cheap" gas and the guzzlers were going to cost the environment. But, to be honest, I miss cars that were heavy, and had chrome! And, even as a kid I could tell you what each model was, and new models coming out was a big deal. The TBird caused the most excitement in the '50's when I was in HS.

    I think, therefore I am. I think.

    by mcmom on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 04:02:55 PM PDT

  •  Gasoline was a drug on the market (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem

    until the Model T caught on. Standard Oil and others made thier enourmous fortunes on kerosene for lighting. Gasoline was too volitale and flammable for that use.

    Don't let millionaires steal Social Security.
    I said, "Don't let millionaires steal Social Security!"

    by Leo in NJ on Sun Sep 23, 2012 at 08:45:18 PM PDT

  •  My grandfather owned a Cities Service station... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem, dwayne

    from about 1930-1960.

    Then, when I was in college in the late 1970, I worked at a Standard/Amoco full service station for about five years -- drove wrecker, fixed tires, did oil changes, etc etc.

    I drove by the old station Sunday when I was in town to visit relatives. It had been remodeled into a convenience store/self-serve station about 20 years ago but now even that's gone -- just an abandoned building with the pumps rusting out on the islands.

  •  Simas Brothers - CA stations with DIY lift (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JaxDem

    I remember the Simas Brothers gas station across the street from the Fairfax Theater on Foothill Blvd in East Oakland, California where I worked part time in the early 1960's.  They had a full-size hydraulic lift under a roof in the back corner that they rented for a very low fee so you could get your car up in the air, walk under it and work on it.  And the gas was 25-30 cents per gallon.

    Don't have any pics, and can't find any pics on the web of the California Simas stations.

    The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking that created them - Albert Einstein

    by DaveVH on Mon Sep 24, 2012 at 07:38:08 AM PDT

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