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1917 Murrieta Garage.jpg

Welcome to the Murrieta Valley Historical Society's

History Marker Project.

The Murrieta Garage


The Murrieta Garage was built by James Witcher in 1914. He was Earnest Lakeman’s step-son. The garage was located on the corner of Washington Avenue and Juniper Street. It is believed to be the first service station established in Murrieta. The business serviced travelers on Riverside County’s first paved highway, the Inland Highway, which was routed along Washington Avenue.

James Witcher sold the business to Harry Lewis on August 1, 1927. In 1930, Harry’s wife, Edna, became the town librarian. The Lewis garage hosted the Murrieta Public Library from 1930 to 1934. It became a business where a person could fill up the gas tank or check out a library book. Harry Lewis sold the business to Albert K. Small in May 1934. Albert purchased the business for his youngest son, Edward Small. He operated the garage for two years. On October 1936, the station was sold to Miles W. Thompson. He had bought the business for his son, Max Thompson. The business was renamed, the Murrieta Service Station. Max Thompson operated the station for one year. Then on September 23, 1937, the station was sold to Eldon Knott. Knott’s Garage became a favorite hang out place for the young boys in Murrieta. The boys would visit the garage and learn how to work on engines and car maintenance. Eldon operated the business for nine years. He then sold it to his brother, Gordon Knott and Robert Beauchamp.

Marvin Curran, who was one of the young boys that hung out at the garage, eventually bought the station. Later, Marvin purchased a service station on Ivy Street next to King’s Café. He then sold the garage on Washington Avenue. By the 1970s, the service station closed. By 1991, the station was demolished and only a vacant lot remained.

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