From Livery Stables to Auto Centres


    Seems like all new things that come to Leduc in its early years started in downtown. By the time Paul Therriault sold his livery stable in 1923 the automobile had replaced horses as the normal means of transportation. By 1924 both the Leduc Hardware and the Moss/Bullock Hardware stores had established Bowser pumps in front of their stores to meet the needs of their customers. 
    It didn’t take long for individuals to see the need for auto mechanics and by the mid 1930’s several auto mechanical shops were open for business on 50th Avenue. Perhaps the best know was called Otto’s Auto Service and was operated by Otto Grubert.
    One of the first gasoline companies to make their products available to Leduc residents was the Purity 99 Oil Company. This was an Alberta company that built their own refinery in Turner Valley. The company expanded and by the 1940’s had stations across the prairies. In 1953 the company was bought out by another Canadian company called the Anglo American Exploration. Purity 99 would keep its brand name. Eventually BA bought out Anglo in 1963 and in turn was absorbed by Gulf Canada in 1970 and the Purity 99 brand name disappeared. Gulf would be sold to Petro Canada in 1985 and now is part of Suncor Energy. The Leduc Motors, located on Therriault’s original Livery stable site, sold Purity 99 gas for 11 cents a gallon in the early 1950’s.
    Other well-known Alberta brands available in Leduc during the 1930’s and 40’s were Red Head and Royalite as well as the still familiar international companies of ESSO and Shell.
    It didn’t take long for several Leduc businessmen to decide there was money to be made in selling automobiles directly to Leduc residents and a number of dealerships opened their doors to the public. Among the first to open was the Maple Leaf Motors in 1937 and would sell Dodge and DeSoto cars and trucks. Their competition saw Ford’s being sold by H. Judson’s Garage and in 1947 Howard Henderson open up his Chrysler - Plymouth - Fargo dealership on the corner of 50th Avenue and 48th Street. 
    Henderson had trouble opening up on time as three weeks prior to the grand opening a huge wind and hailstorm hit the area and blew out 15 of the buildings windows. The storm was so large that dirt blown into the air as far away as Telfordville could be seen as a black cloud. The dealership was, at the time, the biggest in Leduc and provided gas and a repair shop as well as new and used trucks and cars. In time Henderson changed the cars he sold to Buicks and Pontiacs.
    Just as the various grocery stores found it more and more difficult to serve their customers because of increase traffic flow and moved to locations that could handle the parking needs of their customers the various dealerships began to move away from downtown to more convenient locations. By 1961 Henderson had moved and sold the building. Today a number of businesses are located in the structure where one once bought and had repaired their automobiles. The building has been modernized and streamlined and from the front looks nothing like what one saw when Henderson sold his cars, but if you walk around the back you can still see the white wall just as it looked in the 1950’s.

More Stories:
  • The Wild Side - A New Local TV Series Coming Soon Coming your way is a new television series, detailing the life of the average outdoorsman here in Alberta, the team they share the field with, and the families involved in accommodating their passion, named, ‘The WildSide’. ...
  • Fall Crocuses Dare Alberta Winters Canadian gardeners are known for their adventurous spirit. Not to climb mountains or hike in a foreign wilderness, but to sometimes introduce new plants in their gardens, year after year. Through the import of seeds and bulbs ...
  • Rising Starz Fundraiser For Make-A-Wish Set aside this Saturday, October 25th, for the First Annual Rising Starz Event, showcasing the talents of local performers with the intent to raise enough money to grant a wish to a wish child. The ‘magic’ of a wish can reinvigorate ...
  • Rosebrier 4H Beef Club It’s that time of the year, 4H has begun. We are all so excited to begin a new year with new calves. We have 19 members in our club this year. During our October meeting we held elections. Our Executive are as follows: Emilee ...
  • Leduc City’s Emergency Response Proves Effective In Dealing With Spill Leduc Fire Services responded to a chemical spill at the Leduc Recreation Centre (LRC) on Oct. 16, 2014. Fourteen firefighters, two pump trucks, one rescue truck and a command vehicle were dispatched to the LRC shortly after ...
  • The 2014 Calmar Firemen’s Ball Goes Country! This year, the 8th annual Calmar Firemen’s Ball did a 360 and went from the usual formal affair to a down home country casual theme, much to everyone’s liking! The evening began with an excellent meal with plenty of country ...
  • Medieval Fundraiser Immanuel Anglican Church in Wetaskiwin had a wonderful time with its second annual evening of Medieval Feasting and Entertainment. The evening was intended as a fundraiser for the church, and included a silent auction. The ...
  • Thorsby Ballerina Headed For the Big Stage Six years of dance classes might enrich the life of a youth, but for a young Thorsby ballerina, hard work and focused passion will lead to an opportunity of a lifetime. Kiera Souza, who turned nine years old on October 17th, ...
  • Bob Robinson: Rodeo Hall Of Fame Inductee 2014 Millet’s own Bob Robinson had the honor of being inducted into the Rodeo Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City, during the Rodeo Historical Society’s Rodeo Weekend, September 26-27. Born September 13, 1931 in Calgary to Frederick ...
  • Small Fire Department Receives Big Boost On Friday, October 10th, the County of Wetaskiwin’s Mulhurst & District Fire & Rescue Department was presented with a cheque for $15,000. The money was donated during the ‘2014 Larry Majeski Memorial Golf Tournament & BBQ’ ...
  • This, That And Everything As of October 10th, Millet really does have This That And Everything. Located at 5009 – 49 Ave in the old Fields location, owners Richard and Sabrina Jaffray-Barnes have realized their dream of a family business. The couple ...
  • Louisiana Hayride At Maclab Upon making plans to attend the country Music Tribute concert, “Hayride” at the Maclab Centre for the Performing Arts in Leduc, it came to the attention of regional theatre-goers that the Maclab now offers reserved seating. ...
  • Power Off Predators Technology, the Internet and social media are facts of life in today’s society, and with all the benefits, there is a dark corner where predators groom and lure young people. When Warburg resident Colleen Foster was approached ...
  • Turkey Chase and Search for The Yeti The Annual Devon Turkey Chase is in its 9th year, held once again at the Lions Campground on the shore of the North Saskatchewan River. This fun outdoor event is so rooted in the Town of Devon’s local culture, that it has ...
  • Fall Food Roundup Success The shelves of the Leduc and District Food Bank are filling up again with another successful Fall Food Round Up. This year, 17,679 pounds of food was collected in the door-to-door food drive Oct. 6. Another 3,900 pounds have ...
  • Leduc Food Bank Cooking Lessons Each month, between 100 and 150 families in the Beaumont, Calmar, Leduc, Leduc County, Devon, New Sarepta, Thorsby, Nisku and Warburg walk through the doors at the Leduc and District Food Bank looking for help to feed their ...
  • Young Leaders To Be Praised At 3rd Annual Mayor’s Event On October 29th, from noon till 2 pm, at the Best Western, over 70 Leduc teens will be applauded for their character, service and leadership at the 3rd Annual Mayor’s Youth Leadership Recognition Awards Luncheon. Leduc Mayor ...
  • Battle Lake Church Welcomes New Pastor A Commissioning Service planned for October 25 marks the first six months of the Buchholz’ pastoral ministry at Battle Lake Community Baptist Church. This is a momentous event for the congregation as it marks the end of a ...
  • Saving Lives During Operation Impact Submitted by S/Sgt Neill Pearson A/Officer in Charge, Wetaskiwin RCMP October 10-13, 2014 will mark Operation Impact, a national campaign to make Canada’s roads the safest in the world. Members of the Wetaskiwin RCMP detachment ...
  • 1st Annual WCTS Walker-Thon Raises Over $3,000!!! The Wetaskiwin Community Transportation Society held its 1st Annual Walker-thon earlier today (Friday, September 26, 2014) at the Wetaskiwin Mall. Led by Mayor Bill Elliot and W1440 Morning Man Billy Williams, 14 participants ...




 
  • Leduc Radio Ad
  • Industrial Netmedia
  • Industrial Netmedia
  • Industrial Netmedia