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Powell Aeroplane Filling Station

Elmer and Henry Nickle built the Airplane Filling Station, as it is commonly known, along the newly widened US 25 in 1930. The two brothers knew the value of using an eye catching design for their station. They knew that the key to success would be too not only serve the residents of the area, but they would also need to draw for the recent influx of travelers that the introduction of the automobile to the mass public had created. They chose the Fantastic style of architecture in order to make their station more appealing to the traveling public. While the form of the airplane lends itself well to use as a gas station, it was Elmer Nickle’s affinity for airplanes that was the driving force behind the stations construction. In the early years the brothers advertised on the reversible business cards with "Colonel" Harlen Sanders, who later converted his roadside station in to what would become the Kentucky Fried Chicken Empire. From :

"The Airplane Filling Station is a widely recognized local landmark and an important element in Knox County’s historical and architectural landscape. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, it is the region’s sole extant example of mimetic architecture and is arguably the best example of this roadside building style in the state. It is also significant reminder of the early days of auto travel and a tribute to the beginnings of aviation."

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Photo details

  • Uploaded on July 25, 2012
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by tarheel_ron
    • Camera: Apple iPhone 4
    • Taken on 2012/07/24 12:44:04
    • Exposure: 0.003s (1/392)
    • Focal Length: 3.85mm
    • F/Stop: f/2.800
    • ISO Speed: ISO80
    • No flash