The official logo of the Sand Lake Historical Society

Historical Highlights


Gas Stations in the Town of Sand Lake

"You can trust your car to the man who wears the star.the big, bright Texaco Star!" . or to the man at the sign of the Flying Horse (SOCONY, later Mobil), "put a tiger in your tank" (at Esso), "custom blend" your gasoline (at Sunoco), or just fill up on either Good Gulf or Gulf No-Nox!

Texaco sign

SOCONY (Mobil) sign

Esso sign

Sunoco sign

Cities Service sign

Gulf sign

Sinclair 'H-C' gasoline sign

These were just some of the gasoline brands available in the Town of Sand Lake, back when you pulled up to the pumps, the car tires running over an air hose that rang a bell inside and signaled an attendant to approach your car. He (yes, almost always male back then) not only pumped your gasoline while you sat in the car, but usually washed your windshield and at least offered to "check under the hood"! And you remained in the car while the attendant brought back your change or your gas company card and receipt!

That's just one reason they were called "service stations" back in those days. Most of these stations also offered tires, oil and lubrication and at least some level of repairs.

Nowadays, it's different. Gas stations (most also "convenience stores"), with their 6, 8, 12 or more pumps, all self-service, most all set up to take your credit card to save you the walk inside.unless you're hungry or need a quick coffee, gallon of milk or Lotto ticket! Oh, if you look hard enough, you might find that quart of oil you need - and then you get to put it in yourself. At least most pumps have large awnings overhead to keep the rain and snow off you.

"Full service" is pretty much a thing of the past nowadays. But many of us can still remember pulling into Werger's in West Sand Lake in the family's 1956 Plymouth wagon, or filling up the '36 Ford at Nash's in Sand Lake. If the old Chevy Bel Air didn't mind, maybe you filled up on discount "GULFTANE" in Averill Park. Dad's and my sporty little Triumphs needed to use Gulf "No-Nox" or Mobil "Special" premium! My current antique Triumph also takes "premium"; it's now usually better known by the octane rating number, possibly easier to remember than clever names from the marketing departments!

This is a work in progress. Although there were other garages, only those with gas pumps are included here. If you have any pictures of gas stations in and around the Town of Sand Lake, please let us know! Meanwhile, return with us now to those "filling" days of yesteryear! -- Andrew Mace

Our tour begins at the eastern end of the town line on Routes 43 and 66.
Les and Edmund Wagner operated a station on this location in the early 1950s and sold it to Harry Griswold. Later it was Mark Perry's cemetery stone business. Currently it serves as a used car sales office.

Griswold station, Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

At Sand Lake corners, there have been gas stations on each corner.
Nash's post office had gas pumps (southwest corner).another view of Nash's store and Mobil gas pump; click for a larger version

another view of Nash's store and Mobil gas pump; click for a larger version

After Crape's Hotel was razed, a gas station was built on that (southeast) corner and run by Alvin Teal. Later, it was known as Schermerhorn's. (If you have a better picture of this station, please let us know!) On the other (northeast) corner of Taborton Road, Henry Zweibel ran a gas station and garage in the 1940s.

Crape's Hotel, Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Schermhorn gas station, Sand Lake

Cumberland Farms and the Sand Lake Post Office are now located where there was an Esso station run by Paul St. Germain (northwest corner). Earlier, Harold Tifft had leased the station for his brother Delmar to run.

Cumberland Farms and US Post Office, Sand Lake; click for a larger version

We're traveling west on Route 43.
Across from what is now the Sand Lake School, Fred Robertson operated a Standard Oil Company of New York station in the middle 1930s. Jean Robertson Fleming's brother Clifford told her when the new road was built, Lane Construction always got their gas at the station. Her mother made doughnuts, and they were a big hit!

Fred Robertson's Standard Oil station, Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Here are two circa 1952-3 pictures of the above station when it was run as a Sinclair station by Ben Budesheim under the name Benny's Auto Repair. In the first picture, Ben's son Bob is on the bike and Ben, Jr. is standing. Later, candy and school supplies were sold by Mrs. Budesheim. In the second view, you can see the newly completed Miller Hill School on the left in the background.

Benny's Auto Repair and Sinclair station, Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Another view looking east from Benny's Auto Repair and Sinclair station, Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Continuing toward Averill Park we pass by William Rendert's Ford dealership (now the law office of Richard Ceresia); he had one gas pump. Walter Strope also ran a business there.
In the late 40s, Fred Kainer, Sr. had this Texaco station built on Route 43 at Eastern Union Turnpike. Other operators included Alvin Teal and Marty Butler, and it had also been both a Gulf and Sunoco station. It's now Miller's Automotive and has no gas pumps.

Fred Kainer's Texaco station, Averill Park; click on the image for a larger version

Further up the hill look to the left.
Over the years this building was Wright's Drug Store, the A&P, and Gauch's Gift and Appliance. Does anyone know when gas was sold at this location?

A&P, also Lakeview Hotel, Averill Park; click on the image for a larger version

Let's travel to the intersection of Route 43 and old Route 66.
The building currently housing Jiffy Mart was formerly a Mobil station, this building replacing an earlier Mobil station. Gas stations on this site date back to one being operated by Harold Garstang, Leon Smith, Brian Hallett and in the late 1930s by "Doc" Ferguson. It is shown here as a Neasco station. (Neasco appears to be an acronym for North End Auto Supply Company -- Troy, NY)

Neasco gas station, Averill Park; click on the image for a larger version

Continuing west on Route 43. On the left, across from the Averill Park High School, we find two stations.
Around 1954, Les Wagner built a station according to Sunoco specifications and ran it until the mid 1970s, when the gas crunch made it difficult to operate. It was also a favorite spot for kids to stop in for soda and candy bars. He later leased it to Carlton Hughes and then to Spencer Hughes. Ernie Hoffman worked for Les for several years.

Les Wagner's former Sunoco station, Averill Park; click on the image for a larger version

This is the current Sunoco station, located a short distance west of Les Wagner's station.

Sunoco station and convenience store, Averill Park; click on the image for a larger version

We're getting closer to the hamlet of West Sand Lake.
Bashford's Market (previously known as Hardin's) would be today's convenience store and gas station. Notice the price of gas in "the good old days" (2nd picture, from the 1970s). It is now an apartment house and is located across from Stewart's Shop on Route 43.

Bashford's Market and Texaco Station, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Bashford's Market in the 1970s, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Harold Foster had his first garage at this location, which is now an apartment house at the corner of Brookview Court, (the first left turn traveling east, past the 43 Mall) and Route 43.

Harold Foster's first gas station, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Garage-hand Ethan Miller is standing in front of Harold Foster's Olixir Service station, when he moved to the corner of Springer Road and Route 43. In 1963, Tom Cipperly bought it from Foster, ran it for two years and then sold the building to the Sand Lake Ambulance.

Harold Foster's Olixir gas station, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Sand Lake Ambulance, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Now we are in the hamlet of West Sand Lake and find -- at various times -- gas stations on three corners.

Judging by the Buick parked near the Mobil gas pumps of Mike Miller & Sons Meats - Groceries, this view is c.1939. The building was built in 1878 and was on the southeast corner of Routes 43 and 150.

Mike Miller & Sons Meats - Groceries - Mobilgas station, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

In the 1930s to mid-1940s Chauncey V. Waterbury, Charlie Ryemiller, and Charlie Coons ran this station located on the northeast corner of Routes 43 and 150. Roland Sewell was running it when WWII ended, as did gas rationing. It was J. Ken Van Hoesen's gas station in 1948. Until 2007, a Mobil station was operated on this site.

Gas station, northeast corner, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Mobil gas station, northeast corner, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

The Greenman and Apple Garage, started in 1925 by Zenas Greenman and Howard Apple, was located in the north end of the old Brewster House Hotel, which stood on the northwest corner of Routes 43 and 150. It was used temporarily by the KLWM bus company. A.K. Wolfe's Appliance Store and several gas stations have since occupied this corner, including Joseph Werger's Mobil gas station (shown here in the 1950s; later Gulf and then Sunoco and Citgo under other owners/ operators). Currently, a Rite Aid Pharmacy occupies this site.

Greenman and Apple's West Sand Lake Garage and Neaso station, northeast corner, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Werger's Mobil station, northeast corner, West Sand Lake; click on the image for a larger version

Can you help us locate these stations? 

This postcard shows The Maple Shade, Averill Park, NY." Do you know where it was?

'The Maple Shade, Averill Park'; click on the image for a larger version

Where was Harry Ostrom's Sinclair Gas Station? Perhaps on the hill going east towards Averill Park?

Harry Ostrom's Sinclair station; click on the image for a larger version

Irving Sewell remembers that, in the 1930s, Chauncey V. Waterbury had two gas pumps in the front yard of his home, close to the town line on the west side of Route 150 near Stop 13. He also remembers that, c. 1932, the last house on the right hand side of Route 43 before going up the hill out of West Sand Lake had been a gas station. It was later the residence of Bob Hitchcock.

Another remembrance for Irv is Jack Bink's station in the 1940s at the corner of Route 150 and County Route 50, known more recently as Connie's Corner or Maple Leaf Floor Covering.

Leads to gas stations/pumps located on Route 150 South near Sherwin's Laundry, at the point of Crystal Cove near Larkin's Funeral Home, and on Burden Lake Road have not been able to be substantiated.

Again, we welcome any of you reading this to fill in the blanks and/or add new material. Please let us know.

Back to the
Home Page

SLHS glassblower

Back to the Highlights Page

Do you have any information on or pictures of gas stations in Sand Lake? If so, please contact us!

SLHS glassblower 1/1/08, updated 3/23/12; last revised January 3, 2015 -- asm. © 2018 Sand Lake Historical Society; all rights reserved. Special thanks to RootsWeb for providing space for our web site. © 2010; all rights reserved.