100 Years Ago Today

A History Of Events And Happenings From Exactly One Hundred Years Ago

The World’s First Filling Station

Harvey Wickliffe started working for Standard Oil of Ohio in 1895 driving a tank wagon delivering coal oil to stores within a 20 mile radius of Columbus, Ohio. Once the automobile began to become popular, Wickliffe could foresee that this was more than a passing fad. Early auto enthusiasts had to get fuel from hardware stores or pharmacists. With his friend and partner B A Mathews they planned and built a drive-through all service station that catered only to automobiles and dispensed gas.

On June 1, 1912 the very first full service gas station opened on the corners of Oak and Young in Columbus, Ohio 3 blocks from the State Capitol. Wickliffe called it a “filling station” and automobiles will enter from the front and have their tanks filled by hand-cranked pumps with Standard Red Crown gasoline. Oils and grease will also be offered. There is no electricity so sales will end at sundown.

The world’s first filling station in Columbus, Ohio – 1912


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