David Melson

Picturing the Past 108: Dixie Service Station

Posted Tuesday, April 26, 2011, at 2:47 PM
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  • The Dixie Service Station was once operated by Mr. Harry Alexander, known to many in later years as "The Bicycle Man". Well into his 70's he could be seen on his bike on any end of Bedford County, and Miss Ollie made more than one trip to fetch him home with her Oldsmobile because of flat tires.

    -- Posted by superx1250 on Tue, Apr 26, 2011, at 3:04 PM
  • Yes David there once was three service stations at this intersection. Along with Dixie Service Station, there was also the Gulfpride Service Station, and if my memory serves me correctly the other corner had a Mobil Service Station with the big flying red horse sign in front. Then of course there was the Rebel Maid on the other corner.

    -- Posted by leeiii on Tue, Apr 26, 2011, at 3:35 PM
  • The Dixie Service station later became a Goodyear service center later didn't it? If my memory serves me correctly, the building underneath the Firestone sign held a Western Auto store.

    -- Posted by Tim Lokey on Tue, Apr 26, 2011, at 11:38 PM
  • The Dixie Service Station was operated (maybe partly owned) by Leslie Cartwright....I bought many a $1.00 lube and $1.25 oil change there which was as cheap as the oil and grease cost my Dad at Safety Motor Service....Lots of Drag Races were organized either there or over at the Rebel Maid...Great Photo David...

    -- Posted by FlaDon on Wed, Apr 27, 2011, at 6:20 AM
  • Remember the street light right in the center of the intersection.

    -- Posted by Cal t on Wed, Apr 27, 2011, at 10:09 AM
  • Calt: We covered the "Fender Nocker with Scars" a while back

    but you reminded me that the one in Crossvile,TN

    did not have a Red Lite.....Leeiii, can you

    contribute to this????

    -- Posted by FlaDon on Wed, Apr 27, 2011, at 1:41 PM
  • I worked at Dixie Service Station for 1959 to 1962 and while I worked there Leslie, Billy and Ben Cartwright owned the service station. I worked the weekend shift, Saturday and Sunday, from 7 am to 6 pm while I was in high school. There was a garage behind the station and Joe Cartwright was the mechanic. There was also a Firestone Store at the station and it sold tires and appliances. It was closed, I think around 1960. A wash job was $1.00 and repairing a flat tire was also $1.00. Regular gas was 33 cents a gallon. Everytime you bought gas you got you windshield cleaned, oil and water checked and you got the air in your tires checked. It was the only station in Shelbyville that was open 24 hours a day that I know of. The Western Auto Store was south of the service station.

    -- Posted by bellbuckle62 on Wed, Apr 27, 2011, at 2:22 PM
  • This building was built for Mr. David Enochs as a

    Studebaker dealership called Dixie Motors. It was built by Thomas Cartwright Contractor. I think Studebaker went out of business in about 1952 or '53 and Mr. Enochs closed shop.

    Leslie, Billy, and Ben Cartwright did open the Dixie Service Station and Joe Cartwright was the mechanic in the back. Mr. J. D. Hutton, who was the Texaco/Firestone Distributor, for this area, was the one who was responsibile for the tire store, I think, and his son-in-law ran it.

    -- Posted by walrite on Wed, Apr 27, 2011, at 3:14 PM
  • FlaDon, several months back a friend of mine sent me a photo of the pylon in Crossville that was made in 1937. It did not have a traffic light on it.

    -- Posted by leeiii on Wed, Apr 27, 2011, at 4:34 PM
  • I went back to blog #21 to see the traffic light and the Gulf station across the street.Is there a larger pic of this area?

    -- Posted by Cal t on Thu, Apr 28, 2011, at 10:15 AM
  • David, I have forgotten how to access the Picturing the Past web photos. Would you please refresh my memory.

    -- Posted by leeiii on Thu, Apr 28, 2011, at 1:10 PM
  • leeiii,in home page search box type "picturing the past" (no quotation marks), then scroll down the list and mark "photos" then hit search. Sorry David, not meaning to jump in front of anybody.

    -- Posted by ilikeoldsongs on Thu, Apr 28, 2011, at 2:53 PM
  • Thanks ilikeoldsongs.

    -- Posted by leeiii on Thu, Apr 28, 2011, at 3:34 PM
  • I'm not sure about the equation of this Dixie Service Station with Dixie Motors. The latter has been discussed here a lot -- especially on the "Looking back: Where was it?" thread, between March 19 and May 20 of last year:


    That Studebaker dealership was in at least three other locations -- if it was also here, that would make four. Also, Studebaker didn't cease its US production until Dec. 1963 (and in Canada, a year or two later).

    My dad used to point at the Dixie Service Station (the Main St. side) and tell people "I was born under that gas pump." That is, he was born in 1910 at home; and that's where the Hulan family lived when they moved to Shelbyville from Nashville in 1898. I have 1946 photos of the old house, mentioned (as the original site of the Shelbyville Harness Company) on p. 101 of the bicentennial book that was edited by Rene Capley and published by the T-G last summer. I believe my dad took the photos because the house was about to be demolished to build this gas station.

    I've emailed one of the photos to David, in case anybody wants to see a couple of mid-19th century brick homes that used to grace the present Rite-Aid parking lot.

    -- Posted by razyn on Fri, Apr 29, 2011, at 10:44 AM
  • razyn, I do not ever remember the Studebaker dealership being at this location. I am not saying that it never was; just that I do not remember it being at that location.

    -- Posted by leeiii on Fri, Apr 29, 2011, at 2:47 PM
  • The building was originally Dixie Motors and was the Studebaker dealership. It was in operation since about 1946 or l947. I remember it very well since my dad worked there (Everett Locke). The truck lot was across Madison St. next to the Rebel Maid Grill. There was a small showroom on the right hand as you went in the front doors. David Enochs owned the dealership.

    -- Posted by JRL on Sat, Apr 30, 2011, at 10:34 PM
  • Mr. Leslie, Billy and Ben Cartwright operated a true SERVICE station. During my freshman year in college I once parked my car back of the station and rode to MTSU with a friend that day. When I returned Mr. Leslie put four new tires on my car and told me he had noticed the tires and put a new set on the car. "I know it's tough on you going to college on the GI Bill right now. Pay when whenever you can."

    -- Posted by bomelson on Sun, May 1, 2011, at 3:57 PM
  • This article was the closest thing I could find to an item I recently acquired. I have an old ashtray that has "Stolen from the Rebel Maid Shelbyville Tenn." printed inside it. Can anyone tell me anything about this establishment?


    -- Posted by rustyflea on Fri, May 27, 2011, at 11:54 AM
  • rustyflea, I am sure that there are others who could give you more information than me but I will be glad to tell you what I know. The Rebel Maid was located on the Northeast corner of the Highway 41-A/Highway 231 intersection. I am not sure of the year it opened for business but I am guessing that it was in the late 40s to early 50s. It was one of the popular hang-outs for teens during my teenage years. It started as a two window walk up type of Dairy Dip and grew through the years into a sit down hamburger and fries restaurant that also offered curb service. I am not sure who the property owner was but I do know that "Chick" Thorton was the proprietor for many years. I hope this is some help to you.

    -- Posted by leeiii on Sat, May 28, 2011, at 8:33 AM
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