Wednesday, November 4, 2015

The Hubcap Place: Mel's Tires in Florence, SC

Between meetings for a project back home, I stopped by this place and asked if they'd mind my sketching. The owner really got a kick out of it, and even brought me a chair to sit in.

I remember this place so well from growing up.  A place for which you made your parents drive the long way home. An article appeared in the local paper a few years ago (see this link) telling the story of the father, Melvin Wright, who started the business, and the son, Melvin, Jr., who is keeping it up.

Of architectural interest is the building itself. The Pure Oil Company built its gas stations in the 30's and 40's in a Tudor Revival style, attempting to blend with the residential neighborhoods in which they were built. This example still has the original circular blue enamel sign above the entrance, echoing the shape and size of the hundreds of hubcaps hanging on the building.