This week’s Friday is a Gas post is not about a specific brand of station, but rather a specific type of station form. Commercial block type service stations are usually found within towns or cities, often at street corners with an entrance on both sides to accommodate a cross flow of traffic. Based on the estimated dates of construction on our examples, these may be some of the earliest service stations that have been featured as part of the Friday is a Gas Series.
The 2016 TxDOT Field Guide to Gas Stations in Texas describes these stations as primarily being of the 1920s and 1930s era, having an inset service/pumping area covering much of ground floor. The field guide further describes the Commercial Block Stations with the following:
Building owners in urban areas began to incorporate service stations into corner commercial blocks, sometimes adapted to the site and other times designed for the site. Corner commercial block buildings allowed a drive-through area that covered gas pumps, creating a space for marketing and the sale of automotive products, and affording protection during inclement weather.
The field guide describes the stations as One-Part Commercial Block (for a one-story building) and Two-Part Commercial Block (for a two-story building.) Most of the today’s Mississippi examples are one-part commercial block stations. Across the street from one another in Meridian, Mississippi are two, two-part commercial block stations. The station on the right has had its first floor infilled. I am not certain of either buildings’ date of construction, but both likely date to the 1930s.
The example below from Brookhaven, Mississippi is the only example I could locate that appears as an earlier building that was modified to have an inset service/pumping area. Prior to this modification the building was a garage with curbside pumps.
Do you know of any other one-part commercial block stations in Mississippi? Or perhaps a two-part commercial block station? If so let us know if the comments below.
Did you enjoy this post on a Mississippi Gas Station? Consider checking out these other “Friday is a Gas” posts.
- Friday is a Gas: Curbside Gas Pumps (c.1910-c.1925)
- Friday is a Gas: Gulf Gas Stations c.1920-c.1930
- Friday is a Gas: Sinclair Station c.1930s
- Friday is a Gas: Pan Am/Amoco Stations c.1930-c.1940
- Friday is a Gas: Cities Service Stations c.1930 – c.1950
- Friday is a Gas: Teague & The Icebox (1937-c.1955)
- Friday is a Gas: Humble c.1950-c.1960
- Friday is a Gas: Humble, Enco, Esso, and Exxon c.1960-c.1970
- The Matawan Texacos of Mississippi (1965-c.1975)