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Montour gas station could be added to list of Lincoln Highway attractions By John Speer CIP jspeer@tamatoledonews.com

December 13, 2018
Northern-Sun Print
Closed for a long time but still standing, the little gas station at the intersection of Tama County Roads E49 and T47 and South Main in Montour may have new life. Janice Gammon, Iowa Lincoln Highway Heritage Byway coordinator, said last week efforts are underway to acquire and restore the property as another Lincoln Highway historical site. Tama County Road E49 from Tama through Montour to the Marshall County line was part of the original Lincoln Highway route. The stretch of T47 from the east side of Montour to South Main shares the route with E49. Gammon told Tama County Historic Preservation Commission members during their meeting on Dec. 6 as the Meskwkai Bingo • Casino • Hotel the owners of the station “would be willing to deed over the property to someone who would restore and maintain the building.” Jason, Shane and Dustin Kupka are listed as the owners of the property in Tama County Auditor’s Office records. Gammon said an initial contact had been made with the Montour City Council concerning the effort and she, along with members of the Historical Commission and others interested plan to attend the January, 2019, council meeting. Also, he Iowa Lincoln Highway Association meets Jan. 12, 2019, at Ames and will include the Montour gas station proposal on the agenda. Gammon said financial assistance will be needed for the restoration. Michele Anderson, an owner of Rube’s Steakhouse in Montour, told the commission their business might be oone party interested in supporting the project. Richard and Judy Dunsmoor, rural Toledo, said they have the original Phillips 66 highway sign which was posted at the station and may be willing to donate it and a gasoline pump. The Dunsmoors collect gasoline-related memorabilia. The Montour Centennial History Book lists “Red” Adair as moving to Montour in 1947 to take over the station from Walter Curphy. Later, it is known Farm Service operated it as a gas station for a time before it closed. Montour natives and Tama County historians Dallas and Joyce Wiese report the gas station was built in the late 1920s by Charley Cooper who operated the station with his son, Lawrence. They acquired the corner property from John Alden, a prominent Montour resident. Walter Curphy ran the station during the gas rationing years of WWII, Joyce Wiese said. The Montour Centennial History Book lists David “Red” Adair as moving to Montour in 1947 to take over the station from Curphy. Later, it is known Farm Service operated it as a gas station for a time before it closed. A second, closed gas station is located two blocks east on East Lincoln Highway in Montour.

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