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Haysville gas station, designed by C-II architect, added to national historic register

A former gas station in Haysville that survived a tornado has been added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Vickers Petroleum Service Station at 140 N. Main was added to the national historic register last week as part of Roadside Kansas, according to the National Parks Service. It was placed on the Register of Kansas Historic Places in August.

Vickers Station was built in 1954 and was the first service station in the country featuring the so-called batwing design, Haysville officials said in a news release announcing the listing. It was designed by John M. Hickman, a student of Frank Lloyd Wright and one of the architects of Century II Performing Arts and Convention Center in Wichita.

“The feeling evoked by the property reflects its period of significance,” Haysville officials said in a release after the building was placed on the Kansas registry. “With its bold geometric form, the service station easily embodies the character of Post-War Modernism. Having two historic gas islands in front of the station, the property is easily distinguishable as a service station.”

The building sat vacant for years before a deadly F4 tornado struck Haysville in 1999. City officials said the original exterior masonry of the gas station was one of the few structures in that area of town left intact. Six people were killed amid the devastating damage in the town, the National Weather Service said.

Vickers Station was remodeled in 2007 and now houses the offices of the Haysville Chamber of Commerce.

Several other Kansas buildings were added to the national historic register last week, including a Wichita structure: the former Innes Department Store, 220-230 E. William St. The department store building later became the site of a Macy’s and a Dillard’s. It was more recently the Finney State Office Building, and now is undergoing a redevelopment to make it part of a medical complex.

Other Kansas buildings added to the National Register of Historic Places last week are:

  • Hodson Hotel, 712 Main St., Ashland;
  • William Henry house, 344 N. 1925 Rd., Lecompton;
  • Star Cash Grocery Store and Residence, 696 E. 1719 Rd., Baldwin City;
  • Eureka Downtown Historic District, Eureka;
  • Hartford House, 2309 Claflin Rd., Manhattan;
  • The Avalon, 417 Fremont St., Manhattan;
  • Fire Station No. 4, 813 SW. Clay St., Topeka;
  • St. Mark’s African Methodist Episcopal Church, 801 NW. Harrison Ave., Topeka.
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