Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.

CITGO LOCATION WAS EARLY AUTO SALES SITE

Albion Recorder, June 23, 1997, pg. 4

The recent demolition of the Citgo service station and the erection of a new one behind it on the corner of Michigan Avenue and North Superior Street reminds us that several buildings have been located at this strategic site during the 20th century, all of them related to the automobile industry.

One of Albion’s earliest automobile repair garages was opened in 1909 by Charles Groff and William Forman on Michigan Avenue. The following year it was purchased by Arthur G. Noble and his brother-in-law Harry Richards, Sr., and renamed the Albion Garage Sales Agency. A large brick building was erected on the corner at 302 N. Superior St. and opened in June, 1910.

Noble sold his interest in the firm to Richards in 1918 and started his own garage at 110-112 E. Michigan Avenue the following year. The Albion Garage Sales specialized in Overland automobiles, and the name was changed to Albion Motor Sales in 1921. Eventually the firm switched to Ford, and then moved across the street to 110 E. Michigan Avenue in the 1930s. It was known locally as the “Ford Garage.”

In 1935, the original Albion Motor Sales building on the corner of Michigan/Superior was demolished. A “High-Speed Service Station” was erected in its place, and was operated by Maurice Culyer. At this time the address was changed to 101 E. Michigan Avenue. During the 1950s and 1960s it was known as the Pure Oil Company gas station. That station was demolished at a Checker Oil Service Station was erected on the site. That, too, has been demolished. A Standard gas station was located next door at 111 E. Michigan Avenue for many years, and that building was recently demolished by the Folk Oil Company, which has just erected its new station on that site. It is interesting to know that Citgo has three address numbers it could choose from.

This week we present an interesting photograph of the Albion Garage Sales Agency during the 1920s displaying over a dozen Overland autos parked on the street in front of the showroom on the corner of Michigan Avenue and North Superior Street (across from the Post Office). To the left is the Sebastian Monument Company building. Both buildings of course are now long gone. But with the erection of yet another service station on the site, it is interesting to study this photograph in an historical context. How many of our readers remember these buildings?


Albion Garage Sales Agency

Next: ERIE STREET IS ALSO PART OF HISTORIC DOWNTOWN ALBION


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